It has been almost 24 hours since Nollywood comic actor, John Okafor, professionally known as Mr Ibu, went public with the news of his ailment.
There have been several reactions in the entertainment industry and the public.
It was reported on Wednesday how the 62-year-old “Police Recruit” star opened up about his battle with “a strange and dangerous illness”, explaining that his doctors have recommended the amputation of his legs.
While Nollywood actors have rallied together to support their ailing colleague, some Nigerians have raised concerns about the numerous cases of Nollywood veterans seeking financial assistance.
The ailing actor sought financial assistance a day after he turned 62. He shot the video at an undisclosed hospital in Lagos.
Reacting to the development, Reno Omokri, a former media aide of ex-president Goodluck Jonathan, urged the candidate of the Labour Party in the 2023 presidential elections, Peter Obi, to pay Mr Ibu’s medical bills.
He wrote: “I sympathise with John Ikechukwu Okafor, AKA Mr Ibu, over his ailment, and I urge all #RenosNuggeteers to donate to the account number he put out.
“Please do not ignore his cries for help. I also urge members of the public to donate. However, this is a man who publicly endorsed Peter Obi. He and his daughter danced for Peter Obi and broke the Internet.
“They went out on the streets campaigning for Obi. The same Peter Obi boasted that he is more prosperous than President Biden of the US, who at the time of Peter’s boast was worth $8.2 million.
“After all that John Okafor did for him, perhaps Mr Peter Obi can support him by paying Mr Ibu’s medical bills. I am even surprised that Peter Obi did not remember to post about Mr. Ibu on his birthday yesterday. Even at that, Peter Obi should help him in his time of need.”
Mr Omokri’s post did not sit well with notable Nigerian actor cum lawyer Kanayo O. Kanayo aka KOK.
In an Instagram video on Thursday, KOK appreciated those who had supported his ailing colleague and condemned the insensitivity of others, including Mr Omokri, who he said are clout chasing with Mr Ibu’s illness.
In the video, Mr Kanayo said, “As actors, our heart goes out to our very dear colleague, John Okafor, Mr Ibu. His family has been doing their best since it came out last year that he was sick. And now they have come out to say that we have done our best, we need public support. It is not wrong; would we have felt better if they kept quiet and allowed our colleague to die?”
The actor also slammed Reno Omokri for taunting the Labour Party presidential candidate, Mr Obi, with Mr Ibu’s Illness.
He said, “Now I condemn in strict terms Reno Omokiri, who is coming to call Peter Obi’s name and so on. It is not a friendly thing, and it is wicked. And the other guy, I think Uche Maduagwu, or so, who talked about top actors saying ‘Shame on top actors’. Shame on you too; I say shame on you too because you do not have any value and level to call our names. It is an individual thing to do to support a colleague, and it becomes a collective as Actors Guild of Nigeria, who are doing their best within their limited terms.”
“Don’t forget that some people learn to give personally and privately, and their names will not be mentioned. We will, as individuals, support our colleagues and, as a guild, support our colleagues. Even those who have given can be appreciated based on what they gave to John Okafor. We complement your effort in providing, but nobody should use it as a platform to criticise or impune those who have not given; it is wrong, and we don’t support it.”
Mr Kanayo also appreciated his colleague, Willam Uchemba, who in the past had rendered philanthropic aid to indigent Nigerians without indicting the federal government. In contrast, he called on others to emulate Mr Uchemba.
He also warned that people should refrain from using his colleague’s health situation as a platform to find relevance or trends.
He said, “So this is a warning: if you want to give, give. As individuals, as top actors as you call us, we give at our levels; it is not very important and beneficial only when we announce it. So don’t use our colleague’s name, ‘John Okafor’, Mr Ibu, to trend just because you want a name, Reno Omokiri; if you wish to comment on national issues, be fair to yourself, stop seeking attention. And for those of you who are seeking attention over people’s illness, it is not a good thing to do.”
Mr Kanayo also appreciated those who had given and encouraged others for their generous donations, and he also wished his colleague, Mr Ibu, a speedy recovery.
Source : adomonline