Wale Gates, a UK-based Nigerian comedian, has said that he detests the way his colleagues carry out their business back home in Nigeria.
The MC said his innate yearn to want to be able to say whatever he desires regardless of whose ox is gored has prevented him from doing many shows in Nigeria.
During a chat with ace broadcaster Funmi Iyanda, the talk merchant who was born in East London described Nigerian comedy as “standing in front of powerful people to make fun of poor people”.
When Iyanda implied that he may be depriving himself of opportunities in the fast-growing Nigerian comedy industry, he said, “Yeah, I am. To be honest, I don’t wanna do what they do and again I want to be free.
“That’s the dynamics of it. I hate that. Honestly, I want to look at powerful people and say [my mind]. I don’t like when comedians have to be stupid to make rich people laugh. I hate that thing. No, I don’t want to do that. In the Nigerian system, they do that.
“I want to be able to say what I want. Someone like Ali Baba, it’s taken him years to be able to do that. I don’t want to wait that long. I want to be able to speak to power now.
“Would I be able to do it in Nigeria? No. If I see something, I have to say it. The reason why Nigerian comedians can’t afford to be arrogant is that they need to conform so that money will come in,” he said.
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