‘I Settled For Arts After Five Attempts To Study Medicine’ – Wofai

Me: How did it all start for you – comedy, acting and show presenting?

Wofai: Oh it all started in 1923 when the world was bored and the Lord said Wofai, go into the world and make people smile again.

Her response sounded innocent and authentic until it occurred to me that someone born in 1923 cannot maintain such youthful appearance and her sporty spirit. It then dawn on me that I was having a chat with a lady who leverages on sarcasm and the thrills of a rich sense of humour.

Just as the smile evoked by her sarcasm was starting to disappear, she said, “Nothing was deliberate. One thing led to another, I started making Instagram skits and I noticed my following grew with each new post, so I continued and so did the growth.”

Commonly told is the tale of how she moved from hawking fruits and second-hand clothes on the streets to becoming a celebrated comedienne whose Instagram skits command a viewership of about the attendance size of a match between Manchester United and Liverpool – a congregation of thousands of viewers seeking amusement and each new post on her page is almost like she is hosting a live event.

In these stories, the first series of Instagram skits she posted are referenced as the rising of her horizon but her stars really started to aligned at her point of entry into the tertiary institution when she docilely accepted the option of fate to settle to study Arts & Theatre in the University of Calabar, after five previous attempts at seeking admission to study Medicine & Surgery.

In the ‘dry land’, Wofai Fada found for herself, running water. Arts & Theatre was supposed to be the link road to her main lane but it ushered her to the path she would later manifest – the path Drake would say is ‘God’s Plan’ for her. Wofai coursed through school even though her hustle spirit had her knocking on other doors, of which the door to making ‘Instagram comedy’ would later open up to her.

For Wofai, her success needed no master plan; all she had to do was make some smart decisions like her decision to use Instagram as a portal of expression. She said, “a lot of people are on Instagram but how you use it determines what you get from it. Some people go on Instagram to sniff into the affair of other people and drop negative comments but I use Instagram as a window through which I view the world outside and one through which my craft can be seen.”

But skits and comic materials are only a means to an end for Wofai whose guiding principle tallies with that of Billy Wilder who said “if you are going to tell people the truth, be funny or they’ll kill you.” Impacting lives and influencing the world are part of her ministry even though her approach is rather subtle and jocular. Her skits are unmistakably amusing but they communicate values and ideals.

Wofai is known to be selective with her content which shows that she understands her position as a social media influencer. “Yes I have some influence over the thoughts of Nigerian youths especially those in tertiary institutions, because a lot of these people look up to me. These people know my story and they know where I am coming from. I’m not aiming to make people laugh alone but to educate as well.”

More of her influence is exercised in her entrepreneurial adventure of selling the popular Calabar traditional delicacy ‘Afang’ under the brand name, Just Afang. An idea she has brought to life and has been flourishing with the patronage of natives of Eastern Nigerian origin living in Lagos who crave the taste of home – a craving is helping Wofai them satisfy with her Just Afang initiative.

Describing Wofai as a serial entrepreneur or a jack of many trades would not be out of place. Her scope of engagement is not limited to posting Instagram skits and giving the best Afang experience, she has her tentacles spread to the movie industry, although she has built a profile as an actress, her idea of a major statement is to produce a movie and her first project, although still in the formative stage, is titled Apollo.

Wofai Ewa is best described as a hustler with no limits and no boundaries – a dreamer whose faith and drive are her working formula for success. Having only crossed her mid-twenties not too long ago, Wofai has had years of hard hustling in the past, while her recent years has been a mix of hustling and balling but her hopes are to spend the future purely doing the latter.

 

This article was written by Ibironke Oluwatobi. He tweets via: @ibironketweets 

Culled from Issue 19

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