Nollywood stars, entertainers, and celebrities appear to have distanced themselves from the political ambitions of some of their colleagues, such as Funke Akindele and Tonto Dike.
While Funke Akindele was picked as the running mate to the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Lagos State, Tonto Dike was picked as the running mate to the governorship candidate of the ADC for the 2023 election in Rivers State.
Akindele and Dike, both veteran actresses in the movie industry, are divorced and now single moms. Tonto got married to Olakunle Churchill in 2015 and left the marriage in 2017 after accusations and counter-accusations of domestic violence.
Akindele also left her marriage earlier this year and immediately declared her intention to venture into politics. A few days later, she was announced as the running mate to Abdul-Azeez Adediran, a.k.a. Jandor.
Both actresses have made a flurry of promises to the people of their states if elected into office as deputy governors, but as it stands, they are standing alone when it comes to support from their colleagues.
However, Funke Akindele and Tonto Dike are not the first popular celebrities to venture into politics with the hope of changing the political narrative of the country.
The list is long but we can easily mention the likes of actor Yul Edochie, Kenneth Okonkwo, singer Abolore Akande, a.k.a Nice, singer Bankole Wellington, a.k.a Banky W and Desmond Elliot etc.
While the likes of Honourable Desmond Elliot succeeded and are now two-time members of the Lagos State House of Assembly, it would not be altogether wrong to say that he did not get much of the support of his Nollywood colleagues in his pre-election period.
Speaking with the Daily Post, the former Chairman of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and political analyst, Dr. Sam Amadi, said cynicism at the prospect of the political ambitions of their colleagues and financial selfishness have made Nigerian celebrities distance themselves from the political ambitions of their colleagues.
In his analysis, Dr. Amadi explained the level of competition among professionals, especially in the entertainment sector, as most of their earning capacity depends on their profiles.
“Most of these actors and singers depend on politicians and corporate entities for endorsements, and oftentimes they are more concerned about what they will benefit from." And if they are going to support one of their own, it means they are going to take a position against the more commercially profitable parties that are competing.
“If Funke Akindele wasn’t running, she would probably be supporting Atiku, Tinubu, Peter Obi, or some other party that has the capacity to pay them for their endorsement, support, or other form of advocacy they do for them," he said.
The Daily Post reports that most of the celebrities are either supporting the All Progressives Congress, APC, flagbearer, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, or the candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi.
However, they have remained mum with regards to their colleagues pursuing one political ambition or another.