A lot of reactions have greeted our story about Nollywood stars campaigning for the incumbent President, Goodluck Jonathan to contest the presidential poll next year.
Some Nollywood stars that were excluded were not happy and have been reaching out and asking for ways to be included while others have gone to town with what they called the “authentic” story on the matter. One of such stories had it that coordinator of the Mobilization for Jonathan, Francis Duru “got N35 million while he is sharing a paltry N300,000”.
On his way back to Abuja after recording the song produced by Cobhams and another by Sammie Okposo, Francis Duru said all the talks about the money were lies. “Nobody is getting paid. It’s so ridiculous to say artistes of such caliber are being paid N300,000. I will like you to also think about it.
They are more than such money. They are in this , because they have decided to stop sitting on the fence. They want to identify with a good cause and use their brand leverage to draw attention to the person of President Jonathan. We didn’t pay any money, if we gave anything at all, it is to take care of their logistics such as accommodation, transportation and feeding. And as per collecting N35 million, I can only laugh. Where did N35 million come in ? The people spreading these rumours don’t know what they are talking about. Let them come with facts, proofs and figures and we can start talking from there”.
Meanwhile, president of Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), Segun Arinze, has frowned at the use of Nollywood in the campaign for Jonathan. “I have nothing against artistes campaigning for Jonathan, but they should stop using the name Nollywood or AGN. AGN is apolitical, therefore it should not be dragged into politics. Nollywood is an industry too, they should stick to using their individual names not industry name”. On why he was not part of the movement, he declined to make any comment.
Reacting to the comment, Francis Duru said he’s disappointed in Segun. Said he “Segun is my friend but when I see him, I’ll tell him the truth to his hearing that I’m disappointed. How can he say Nollywood should not be used? Are the actors we are talking about not from Nollywood? So why can’t we use Nollywood? I am from Nollywood, an industry and I am supporting Jonathan, so what’s anybody’s problem with that?
Segun was called. I personally called him and he said the logistic money was small. He was playing games with me so I decided to leave him. I don’t understand what he’s trying to achieve. people think it is time to make money but i think it is time to stand for something. As the president of the guild, he should be at the forefront of things…”