Born to rule the comedy stage and serenade the big guns in the society, Efosa Efex Iyamu, the Chief Protocol Officer to the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, dines with kings and wines with the high and mighty. A show-stopper and always dressed to the nines, Iyamu rules his world with resplendence and in confidence. Funke Olaode explores the inner workings, dexterity, desire and determination of Iyamu amidst his passion for the creative industry and youths
His striking good looks, ravishing body shape, and talent all combined to make him one-of-a-kind. He commands attention. Exuding a mien that borders on the comical and farcical, he often steals the show as the lord of laughter. Multi-talented, inventive and hilarious, his shows have become more and more class acts.
Welcome to the world of Efosa Efex Iyamu, a comedian and the Chief Protocol Officer to the National Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole. Looking dapper on a brown chair, Iyamu’s as a powerful dresser came to bear as his smart orange blazer pair with brown trouser and inner cream match perfectly. Is the comedian on a date? Not really. He believed looking good is part of the show business.
Born and raised in Benin City Edo state among his nuclear family of his parents and two younger siblings, Iyamu went to Agbado Primary School (afternoon session), and Edo college secondary school and got a degree from University of Benin in History and international studies. You may wonder why is not pursuing his career in the diplomat circle or foreign service. Iyamu’s career has been cut out right from secondary school at Edo College where they had what is was then called “Teasing and Word,” an act where you would have to trade your fellow classmates or throw jabs with a lasting impression. “I was best at that and from there I started anchoring events in school. And when I got into the university, I was readily available to do big jobs and here we are today,” he recalled.
Iyamu is good at his act which has paved ways for his many successes. It has equally opened many doors for him on big stage, hobnobbing with the high and powerful on the corridor of power.
He is currently the chief protocol officer to the Chairman of the ruling party APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole. How did his path cross the labour leader-turned-politician?
“Well, I have been working with comrade Adams Oshiomhole for well over 10 years now, and by the grace of God, I have stayed relevant and on top of my game. Firstly, I was his Senior Special Assistant while he was Governor of Edo State. And then I became his Executive Director. And now I am the chief protocol officer to the same man who is now the National Chairman of the biggest party in Nigeria, APC. Talking glowingly about the man who has added value to his life, Iyamu said “The Lord has always been there for me and made me stay relevant. I got my appointment the same week he was sworn in because I stayed in touch and raised the bar for myself in my game. I must say a very big thank you to my boss for the strength, courage and believe in my potentials and me. Comrade has tutored me and made me grow in all spheres of influence. He is my father, my leader for life; a no-nonsense man. He is a man who always wants all of us around him to grow. I had so many experiences from meeting and interacting with different classes of people both from the Presidency and to the common man. Travelling back and forth all the States in the federation and even out of the country and gaining more political experience by the day,” he said
With fame come the trappings of affluence. Though he is yet to acquire one, Iyamu is one the few entertainers that fly private jet like Davido and Wizkid.
In his jovial manner he said: “I have not acquired a private jet. What can I say? Anyway when the job requires it, you use one and if your client can afford it, then you use it because it was required.”
Efex De Entertainer used to organize a monthly show before his current job that took him to Abuja. Has the show been rested? Iyamu assures his fans that the show is still on just as his political appointment hasn’t taken away his first love.
“No I didn’t stop my show. When I started, I was doing the monthly show to be able to promote younger entertainers in my state and set them to a bigger stage. Because I knew I will always do my major concert like I did one in February 2018 with the theme, ‘Kings and Queens Edition’ and it featured Ali Baba, Patoranking, Gordons, Gandoki, Maleke, Dan d’ humorous, Pencil, Mr. Jollof, Acapella, Shawn P, Edo Pikin, Casino, Young Chief and a host of others.
“The next edition will come up on Easter Sunday in Benin. My fans should expect nothing but the best because I have never done less. I’m going to wow them yet again. The first edition was superb and the next one is going to be themed, ‘Resurrection Edition’. It is now an annual. So I still do events in Abuja and I am getting better by the day,” he stated.
How is he coping with his job as Oshiomhole’s protocol officer and doing comedy? “I’m doing my best,” was his response. “I have a boss who understands that I need to grow and grow in the best of ways. He supports me and even introduces me to the best of clients to encourage my trade. So far, I have never regretted working with Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.”
Perhaps, he has his eyes set on politics. “Well, for now, I’m where I’m and I think I’m looking at that because we can’t make a change from speaking from outside. Politics is a good game if you are true to yourself,” he said.
Iyamu as a successful comedian has not forgotten his little beginning. Efosa Iyamu Initiative (EII), a foundation founded to reach out to the less privileged is still on and active in feeding the kids on the street, paying bills for them in school and distributing free school uniforms. Explaining the motives behind the initiative, he stated: “The Efosa Iyamu initiative is what I have been doing for a long time privately and not because I am looking for any favour from anyone. I remember someone told me that maybe I was looking for a political position and that was why I started the initiative. I just laughed because I never had that thought.
“My philosophy in life is that ‘if my success cannot make another person successful, then I am a failure’ and ‘I don’t give because I have too much but because I know what it takes not to have sometimes’. So no matter how little it is we should be able to give back to our communities and lend a helping hand. I always give back from my salary and what I can gather from friends who really care and can assist us.”
As the country prepares for the general elections next month, Iyamu has a piece of advice for the youths: “The youths should remain positive and stay away from trouble. Let’s vote for credible leaders who are not in any way involved in fraudulent acts – people who mean well for our nation and will fight corruption. I will say to the youth, let’s vote for a better Nigeria.”
The year 2018 has been a busy year for Iyamu as a comedian, Oshiomhole’s protocol officer and a family man. How does he combine these roles and still come out fresh?
“The Lord has just been good to me. I have been able to manage all the spheres well without any being relegated. I thank God thus far because I have been able to manage it as it comes. It has really been a very hectic and busy year for me but in all, I give all glory to God. Again, my family understands the kind of job I do and supports me to the fullest. I have the best family ever and I get their full backing and I try to give as much time as possible to them so they don’t lack as well,” he explained.
Efex De Entertainer has become a force to be reckoned with. Looking back, he admits that his driving force has been His maker. “Honestly, my driving force is the Lord God Almighty. And I am standing here only because the Lord made a way. The Lord has been my muscle for life,” he stated.