A popular comedian, Francis Agoda, popularly known as ‘I Go Dye’, has decried the dominance of ‘old politicians’ in Nigerian politics.
The comedian barred his mind during a chat with PREMIUM TIMES on the state of the nation.
He said, “I am saddened by the way old politicians who have been in politics and governance for ages have sidelined the youth. I have not been involved in politics but you can say I have been involved in the political process because I have questioned my fears when I looked back at our history, as a people and the many opportunities that have been denied the youths of my generation.”
The 39-year-old comedian has been very outspoken about national issues in recent times.
Not too long ago, he advised former Vice President Atiku Abubakar not to use “sentimental empathy” with the Nigerian youth to drive his political ambition.
He also wrote President Mohammadu Buhari an open letter advising him not to seek reelection because he is too old to run for a second term.
His frequent social commentaries have prompted talks that he might be nursing a political ambition.
When this newspaper took him up on this, he said, “At least, I don’t belong to any political party, so I can’t say I have any partisan interest. I have written letters to President Buhari, Atiku and other political leaders to leave the scene and allow the youth to take their destinies in their hands since this old generation has consistently failed them.
“As an entertainer, I am only using the platform I have to reach out to people and government to do the right thing. Since we (entertainers) are closer to the people than the government and seem to have the listening ear of the government I can only act as a conduit between the two.”
A United Nations Peace ambassador, the comedian also reflected on the consequences of conflict, citing his personal experience.
“ I recall how I was shot and also lost close friends in the 1997 Warri crisis between the Ijaw and Itsekiri people and it isn’t something we should allow to happen again.
The Chibok and Dapchi experiences as far as I am concerned are uncalled for; we should not see our children as a tool to settle our differences.”
“The government should advance its commitment to make life more meaningful to her citizens; this is the first priority towards restructuring the nation and solving the immediate agitations.
“National pride should not be compromised, because of the selfish interest of a few self -seeking individuals who have created the seeds of discord that is hunting the foundations of this great country.”
I Go Dye’s foray into comedy began in 1994 when he got a contract as a stand up comedian at Prest Motel in Benin, Edo State. He was paid N1000 per show.
He got his big break in 2000 when he was invited to perform at the Night of A thousand Laughs comedy show.