The National Democratic Congress Parliamentary candidate for Ayawaso West Wuogon, John Dumelo, says he will continue acting even if he becomes a Member of Parliament.
He said while romantic scenes would be off-limit, he would not think twice about accepting $1 million for a role that involved romantic scenes, including kissing.
“People in Parliament are lawyers, doctors, and business people and they still do their business. Acting will forever be part of me,” he said on Joy News.
Asked if he would be touching and kissing, he took cover behind the chief legislator and said, “the Speaker will be angry with me.”
“The directors will know that John’s new position is a bit sensitive so let’s not put him in a position that will jeopardise his political career.
However, when the host mentioned acting a romantic role for $ 1 million, his mood changed, he flashed a smile and responded, “as for that one I will take it. Don’t you want a million?”
Article 98(2) of the 1992 Constitution bars MPs from holding office of profit “whether private or public and either directly or indirectly, unless permitted to do so by the Speaker acting on the recommendations of a committee of Parliament.” Holding a profitable office will be on the grounds that it will not prejudice the work of a member of Parliament; and no conflict of interest arises or would arise as a result of that.
The actor married his girlfriend, Gifty Mawunya Nkornu, on May 11, 2018 in a glamorous wedding that attracted almost all those who matter in showbiz in Ghana and Nigeria, where he also has a big following.
His critics say, the marriage was meant to help him appear responsible in the eyes of the electorate and ultimately shed off his play boy tag.
But the father of one laughed that off.
“As for marriage, you will get married at a point in time. Some people believe in marriage, some people don’t. Marriage comes with a level of responsibility. In my case marriage, it is not because I want to appear responsible. There are lot of irresponsible married men,” he said.
On a day his wedding anniversary, he was seen without his wedding ring, Dumelo said he was polishing it, as sweat and grit of campaigning had dimmed it.
He said the whole world knew he was married, hence not wearing a ring did not make any difference.
When the interview turned to the sources of his campaign funds, the actor-turned-entrepreneur insisted he was not in politics for money as he was sponsoring his own campaign.
He was, however, quick to add that he had friends who “are supporting with their widows might. It is not as if someone will bring me one million or two million for my campaign.”
With party financiers accused of having hidden motives for supporting candidates, Mr Dumelo said in his case, donors had nothing to gain.
On the EC’s decision to compile a new register, he said a new registration process would involve millions of people as compared to a limited one that would involve a fraction of the population at a time coronavirus was running amok in the country.
“You are now going to register 18 million people as against a fraction. We are in coronavirus times, gathering can promote infections of more people. Limited registration is the way to go,” he said.
Dumelo’s political ambition follows a wave of Nigerian Nollywood actors and actresses entering the politics as senators.
In 2014, Nollywood star and director Desmond Elliot moved into politics and joined the All Peoples Congress. The following year he ran for a seat in the Lagos state of Assembly. Desmond Elliot shocked everyone by winning.
Veteran actress, Kate Henshaw ,also ran for office. She however lost at the PDP primaries in Calabar state. In December 2015, she was made Special Adviser, Liaison, Lagos to Cross River state.