Some comedians and those who serve as masters of ceremonies (MCs) at events have appealed to the government to assist them with grants to grow the industry.

They said such gesture would also reduce unemployment and stress among people.

They made the appeal while reviewing the contributions of the industry to the nation’s economic development in 2018.

They told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that this genre of the entertainment industry was fast becoming attractive to youths who could not secure regular employment.

They said that should government give intervention funds to the sector, it would help grow it and reduce unemployment and stress in the society.

They added that with reduced stress, people’s lives would be prolonged.

Akinlade Richard, a.k.a. MC Richard, told NAN that 2018 was a tough time for MCs and DJs alike because most companies did not celebrate their end-of-the -year parties.

“This year was really a setback as our regular targets, being companies that we relied on for our year wrap-up, stopped having the end-of-the-year parties because they could not meet their targets.

“Some even had to let go some of their programmes to enable them continue to exist as the economy was not favourable for having any party,” he told NAN.

He said that the few events that were held were planned on low budgets which hardly gave room for the invitation of comedians.

MC Richard, whose business name is Squad 1 Productions, urged the government to provide grants and loans for practitioners.

“The government should assist us with grants because our equipment are too expensive to buy,” he said.

The entertainer also suggested that visa application should be made easy for practitioners travelling abroad for shows.

He said that they were the ones that promote the country’s culture and image internationally.

Similarly, another MC and pianist, Samson Aniefiok of Springforth Productions, said that activities in the industry during the year helped the practitioners to overcome unemployment.

“The sector really created job opportunities for the talented ones.

“Practitioners must be passionate about what they do, ‘’ he said.

Samson, popularly called `Editor Samson’, advised the practitioners to be professional because their professionalism would determine the level of entertainment during any socials.

He urged the government to assist young and talented comedians to succeed.

However, an Electrical/ Electronics engineer, Innocent Okere, who started as a DJ and an MC during his undergraduate days, said he would rate the industry as having scored 80 per cent in 2018.

“We have got the talents, the brains and the wits to measure up internationally and I am very sure we can fit in anywhere we find ourselves in the industry,” he said.

NAN reports that Okere is the director of Donnie Entertainment and had put in 12 years of experience in the profession.

He said, “I still prefer being a DJ because I love it with a passion not just for the money.

“It is a profession that makes people happy and reduces stress in the society which is why the government should intervene by offering  grants to its practitioners,” he said.

Meanwhile, a seasoned comedian, Segun Desmond popularly called MC Desmond, said that he would score the industry as having seven points out of 10 points.

“It has become a profession that has excelled over other sectors of the entertainment industry.

“It is a growing sector that has already created a niche for itself, people hardly do an event without a DJ, an MC or a comedian to anchor it.’’

According to him, the profession is very important in reducing the stress among the people but light-up their moods.

“ When we receive encouragement from the government; it will boost the industry as well as that of the society.

“It will also reduce crimes, crises and other vices in the society,” he said. (NAN)