NIGERIAN barbers are doing amazingly well, regardless of the unending aspersions about them. One among many funny tweets I’ve read about their selflessness reads: “Nigerian barbers will mark your head with white powder while giving you a carve, you will get home only to wash it and find your head shaped like amoeba”. That’s funny, really. I have tasted from that sour soup too. The sound of their generators, clippers, and the dirtiness of their apron are sickening on its own. They make their shops appealing by the papers/charts they plant on the walls. Wallpapers of superstars, musical icons at the national and international level. You hardly sit in Nigerian barbers’ shops without fixing these wallpapers with a gaze. In most cases, the wallpapers are aimed at giving customers an opportunity to select nice hairstyles and shapes they would love to have. Left to me, I’ve always found the hairstyle of Rick Ross more interesting to fix my sight on.
Away from the American singer’s ragged lifestyle, there’s one thing I admire most about him: his neat, bald head. It is like a well-planted grill: glaring, shinning, and compelling. Looking closely at his pictures, one could easily tell that Rick Ross is not totally bald. There’s only absence of hair on the upper part of his head, there’s much hair in the lower part – his jaw. Bushy but nicely-trimmed hair that could comfortably fill the vacuum in his upper head. Such is Rick Ross’ hair condition. Bald in the head, but hairy in the jaw. Half bald, half hairy. Nigeria’s situation is what I can perfectly liken this to. Despite the corruption and ordeals we live with, we are not totally ‘bald’ as a nation. We are mainly bald, but a little hairy. Our entertainment industry thrives with outstanding young men and women with amazing talents. Here, I would like to refer to a quote by one Fredrick Nwabufor who had written: “The talent pool of Nigeria is inexhaustible”.
We have talented musicians breaking and setting records daily, projecting a good image of the Nigerian music industry at the international level. In the acting entertainment industry, we have talented movie actors, and the comedy industry has its talented young men and women. The latter is the centre attention of this piece. I know of many: Taaoma, Mr Macaroni, Oluwadolarz, Cute Abiola and Trinity Guy, the list is endless. But there’s one who has arrested my attention for a long time with his consistent ‘edutaining’ message. I see MC_EDO PIKIN as a different breed in the comedy industry. I’m still finding it hard to guess any celebrity with the courage to castigate fellow celebrities for preaching wrong messages to the world.
Many Nigerian musicians have tasted from his soft rod. When interviewed by his popular comic interviewer, about the difference between artistes and musicians”, he lambasted musicians that promote indecency: nudity, usage of hard substances, fraud and other vices in the society and ended the comedy by giving kudos to great musicians and legends like Lucky Dube, Bob Marley and Fela Anikulapo-Kuti who sang against the ills of their societies and the corruption by leaders. I would have loved that particular comedy more if he had listed Burna Boy who, in many of his songs like Soke, Collateral Damage and Africa Giant, had spoken against the oppression and corruption of Nigerian leaders, and in many other songs, passes golden messages.
Who would make a comedy about permanent voter’s card just to educate Nigerians on the need to exercise their voting rights and shun apathy, electoral malpractices like votes selling for paltry sum and all? Has Nigerians been watching this man and imbibing good values from him? Did Nigerian entertainers watch his latest comedy about sugar daddies? He drew inspiration from the recent story of one Chidinma Adaora, a 300-level Mass Communication student of the University of Lagos who was arrested after allegedly stabbing her alleged sugar daddy, Super TV CEO, Mr. Usifo Ataga, to death. The paradigm comedian made the skit, calling on other sugar daddies to learn from the death of Mr. Usifo, stop sleeping around with young girls, and embrace their wives, some of whom even endured with them before they accumulated their wealth.
Nigerian entertainers who are promoting virtues should keep up with the commendable work. History, the say, never forgets. The ones promoting vices should stop. They should rather portray a high level of decency. Promoting vices like fraud, intake of hard substances and nudity would only fetch them momentary attention. History will never forget the bad they have contributed to the society. There’s so much mess already in the land: only virtue will clear some of the mess, not vices. Both the leaders and led should deduce insightful messages and morals from skits and songs as it is done in the advanced countries. We have found ourselves in a cave already; we shouldn’t dig deeper.
- Amao is a graduate of the University of Ilorin
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