He needs no introduction. Mention his name anywhere, either within the entertainment circles or outside of it, and many will tell you Mr. Macaroni is a name and personality they are very familiar with. And it it’s not just because he is easily one of the most celebrated young comedians at this time, Mr. Macaroni is also one of the most visible celebrities who participated actively at the ill fated EndSars protest that shook the entire nation to its foundation a few months ago. This talented actor and humour merchant whose real name is Debo Adebayo stunned everyone when he put his busy schedules and entire career on hold and threw everything he had into the protest, all in a bid to ensure that the reasons for which the protest was started were realized. He is one personality that the youth have tremendous respect for and they listen to him. He is brilliant. He is intelligent. And for a young and emerging activist, he is also very articulate. And no one could question his passion for the fight against police brutality and bad governance, it was evident for all to see. He joined thousands of other youths to sleep on the road right in front of the Lagos House of Assembly, if that was what it would take for them to be heard. Little wonder why many now look up to him and see in him a beacon of hope that indeed, there are some outstanding young people with incredible minds out there who can and will do great things in this country if they are allowed to get into positions of leadership.
Debo Adebayo is also a firm believer in the notion that the youths, if they come together to speak with one voice, have the capability to move mountains and pressure the government to perform better and meet the needs and yearnings of the people. Last week, Mr. Macaroni had an exclusive interview with City People’s Senior Editor, WALE LAWAL (08037209290). He took his time to explain why the EndSars movement turned out the way it did and why he loves to participate in youth protests despite the monumental risks involved. Here are excerpts.
There is the fear within the country at the moment that there could be another Endsars, that a wave of protest may spring up soon because the government has not shown honesty and sincerity in their dealings with the youths. What do you think is the mood of the youth as we speak seeing how insincere the government has been?
Well, for me, to be honest with you, I can’t say people are planning protest somewhere or not, but clearly, everyone is frustrated. The government has succeeded in frustrating Nigerian youths and they are not even doing anything to correct the situation. I’ve never seen any government as insensitive as this government. This government is extremely insensitive. There are things that are happening and you’re not even showing any compassion. You hear representatives of government and you listen to the tone with which they speak, then you’ll realize we are in a big mess. So, if the government does not carefully address this issue, they will have a lot of problems on their hands. Right now, there’s a lot going on in the country. Farmers were slaughtered in Bornu, that is enough to worry any government. Now, you’re having that kind of case on your hands and you’re still frustrating your youth, knowing full well your youth are unemployed, knowing full well they’re unable to maximize their potentials, so you should know that they are very itchy. One wrong move and everybody’s anger explodes. So, my prayer to them is that you just have to do better. You just have to know that the youths in this country have had enough and that at anytime should they feel scared of losing their lives, knowing full well the government has failed them, they will rather fight back than just sitting down there and waiting to be slaughtered. My prayer to the government is that they need to wake up to their responsibilities. They’re sleeping! They must wake up from their slumber! They’re sleeping intentionally. If they’re not sleeping intentionally, government isn’t rocket science. Leadership isn’t rocket science. And why is leadership not rocket science? Because it is all about placing the people first. If you place the people first, trust me it won’t be rocket science to you. That is when you will know what to do at all times and you will know that the betterment and progress of your people comes first.
Maybe I should take you back to the Lekki shooting. Though its been a few months ago now, but it is still being speculated that a number of lives were lost at the shooting. There has been conflicting figures, but everyone agrees lives were lost. Some have said its just two people that were killed by the soldiers. For someone who was part of the movement and who may have gotten privileged information that’s not out there in public space, how bad really was the Lekki saga? Is it something we should be this worried about?
Look, whichever way you want to look at it, that’s a very easy question to answer. Even if it’s only one life that was lost, we should be worried. We should be angry. We should be sad. Just one life is enough. But of course, more than one life was lost at the shooting. Even if we didn’t see actual shooting, even if we didn’t see lifeless bodies, at least we saw injured people. We were seeing it live. I cannot say this is the number of people that were killed because I wasn’t there, but we saw live recording of people on the ground, injured, and we saw people that were rushed to the hospital. The governor himself said he saw the number of injured people that were rushed to the hospitals, so for anyone to say maybe nobody died is very disrespectful. For me, we should be worried and we should realize that we’re facing a serious security risk because those that swore to protect the lives of citizens are the ones taking them. How could you send a military team to disperse peaceful protesters? What on earth is your justification? What on earth justifies that because you cannot say there was looting or destruction of properties at that time, it was the next day that all of that started! So, I even wonder what kind of wicked government will even begin to blame the unfortunate incident on peaceful protesters, it is the height of wickedness to say it was because of the protest that people started looting and burning! Were you all blind? Didn’t you all that there was peace until you sent military officers to kill civilians! And then people got angry and started to do all manner of nonsense! I am not in any way supporting the looting and burning of properties that took place afterwards, no, I’m not and will never support that, but government must take responsibility. They have failed. They have shown the height of irresponsibility in them and they have shown that they do not care. They have shown total lack of value to human lives and the government has been too insensitive to say the least.
What really fires you to do the things you do when it comes to protests and agitations? You are at the moment one of the most sought after comedians in the country and a lot of people were surprised to see how actively you participated in the recent EndSars protests. I guess the fact that you’re a comedian gave people the impression that you couldn’t be that much of a serious person. But what really fired you up to get that involved considering you’re also one of the busiest comedians at the moment?
Well, yeah, that’s true. As a matter of fact, that period I gave specific instructions to my management team that anything business, anything like advert, promotion, anything that has to do with work, put them hold for now. I wanted everyone to come together, join hands and speak against the evil in our society because if you’re in a society you simply cannot turn deaf ears to the sufferings of the people, whether you’re directly affected or not. Truth is, at the end of the day, later on you will be affected, so why not just join hands and fight the common enemy. For someone like me, whether I’m affected or not, I’m just someone that does not like evil to thrive. This is something I’ve been doing all my life. Right from school, I have always been a vocal person. I have always loved to fight for what is right. I strongly believe in love, I believe in truth and I believe in justice. So, I believe that we should build a society where citizens are not afraid to live in their country. We should be living in a society we can be proud to call home. That has always been my drive. In fact, when the whole thing first started, the first point was at Lekki. In fact, I was actually at Lekki then when I saw some tweets from few protesters in Ikeja. I think they were booing them then because they didn’t have the numbers Lekki had. I’m talking about the day the whole thing started. So, I was like okay, is this how it’s going to be, so I just went to Alausa immediately and from that moment on, the whole thing started.
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Why We, The Youths Are Very Angry – Popular Comedian, Mr MACARONI was last modified: June 28th, 2021 by
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