Movie Review: Does Your Excellency entirely portray Nigeria’s reality?

Your Excellency is a satirical comedy which tells the story of Chief Olalekan Ajadi (Akin Lewis), a very successful and jovial businessman with series of recorded failures in politics as a presidential candidate. When he sets out again on this same mission, he is surprisingly picked by a ruling party with ulterior motives, but it shockingly ends up in his favour when his dance moves trends on social media.

Funke Akindele in her directorial debut highlights the role politics and social media plays in shaping our country. Particularly, I love how this movie clearly points at the fact that Nigeria has a long way to go regarding giving youths the opportunity to rule. Chief Ajadi clearly mocks Michael Idehen (Deyemi Okanlawon), the young presidential aspirant. He labels him as being inexperienced and unfit for the position because he is a youth.

The delicate role social media plays in human development is aptly captured in this movie. Its implicating effects and the misconception it’s capable of creating is seen in the case of Micheal Idehen who trends on social media severally over misinterpreted situations and this contributes to his failure in the elections. On the flip side, it favours Chief Ajadi.

It is very common with most politicians to remember their diverse place of worship when election hovers around the corner, as a subtle means of making members vote in their favour. Chief Ajadi doesn’t fail in projecting this reality.

In Nigeria, we know politics to be a dirty game. Politicians soil their hands in evil and plot malicious tactics to bring down an opponent. The ADC gives chief Ajadi a presidential ticket during the election, all in a bid to use and dump him halfway way to their own favour. Even though this backfires, they congratulate him in pretense while they plot a scheme to take over power from him after four years.

In diverse attempts to portray Nigeria’s reality, I find some actions in this movie very questionable and disturbing. Chief Ajadi wins the presidential election considering how his dance steps and unbothered personality hijacks social media. Now, is this realistic? His character can be likened to that of Ademola Adeleke AKA “The dancing senator”. Despite how he grasped people’s attention and was massively supported, the governorship election didn’t end up in his favour, partly because the opposing party is leading in power. Therefore, with what is obtainable in Nigeria’s politics, Chief Ajadi shouldn’t have won the election just because of his dance steps, even when those in control of power are against him. We have since been ripped off our democratic rights in this country where rigging takes the lead during elections.

Also, seeing that we crave a country where youths can be given the opportunity to lead in various capacities, I find it disturbing as to why Micheal Idehen isn’t given the opportunity, rather Chief Ajadi who appears almost clueless emerges the winner. For once, I expected that we see a fictional representation of the kind of country we yearn for. It is even more disturbing to see that this movie doesn’t completely project the Nigeria we are living in completely and also fails in projecting the Nigeria we hope to see, rather a mini joke.

Written by Marvellous Eze

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