Has Mark Angel gone into farming in compliance with what the current administration is preaching?

This is one question that may be running through your mind, but you just have to relax because he has not dropped his affection for entertaining you.

It was a sunny afternoon, but the location was not one he was familiar with.

Mark Angel, a popular Nigerian entertainer and content creator, had travelled all the way from Port Harcourt to Ugbedomagwu community in Igalamela/Odolu Local Government Area of Kogi State to push a poverty alleviation campaign that is aimed at bringing prosperity to all.

I bet you have not heard the name; 'Ugbedomagwu' before.

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It is a remote community in Kogi State, deprived of all basic amenities and the contrast between where Mark was coming from and the community was glaring. They were worlds apart. 

Cut off from the entire world, Mark Angel saw his love for his mobile phone die and gradually replaced by the reality of another kind of life – one without light, good road, schools and network to even make a call.

It could be described as a community living in the past. 

Action Aid Nigeria and Participation Initiative for Behavioural Change in Development (PIBCID) had searched out the community and had provided the people with some basic amenities, in their push to liberate them from poverty.

Mark Angel goes to farm in ugbedomagwu in Kogi Sta

It is a community that will remind you of the government's 5,000 Naira stipends meant for the very poor and the school feeding programme also meant to encourage pupils to go to school.

None of these programmes exist in Ugbedomagwu community, but that is a story for another day.

It was Mark Angel's induction as an ambassador of the Non-Governmental Organisation and he got the baptism of fire. 

It was an exciting one for him, however, as he said it was one of his best life's experiences, with great lessons that would last  for a life time.   

Ugbedomagwu community's residents have nothing more to do than farming.

Mark Angel goes to farm in ugbedomagwu in Kogi Sta

Their farms were some 500 metres away from their homes and Mark Angel was excited to live a day in the lives of the residents of Ugbedamogwu.

The first thing he did after he arrived in the community on Wednesday, September 19, was to go to the farm which was what the dwellers of the place do in the morning.

It was not a rainy day, so the weather was good for farm activities.


At the farm of one of the residents, Mrs Hauwa Salami, Mark Angel grabbed a hoe and worked like a farmer. He made a ridge with the tool and also planted beans which was one of the major crops produced in large quantity in the community.

The smile on the faces of the farmers around, who had gathered to see him, Emannuela's uncle, as they referred to him, dig the ground and also plant beans, was something to behold.

Mark Angel goes to farm in ugbedomagwu in Kogi Sta

They praised him for doing that much and even advised that he should be careful with using his feet to make a hole while he planted the beans. 

After the farm activities, Mark was shocked to find that children and youths in a community, where people had no access to network, light or other basic amenities, consume his contents and could recognise him. Most of them asked that he should take pictures with them. 

Expressing his feelings about what he saw in the community, he said: "I saw beyond my expectation, below what I used to think was poverty level. 

Mark Angel takes photographer with a fan

"Now, I have seen a new yardstick for measuring poverty. 

"I never believed there were places in Nigeria that you would not find electricity in 2018.

"I never believed that I could go somewhere that I would be cut off from the world. No means of communication. 

"I never thought that there were kids who never knew what canned food was. 

Mark Angel goes to farm in ugbedomagwu in Kogi Sta

"I saw kids that do not know what it means to have more than a teacher from primary 1 to 6.

"With what I saw, it is either that the government has not seen these people or they have not known about Ugbedomagu at all," Mark Angel said. 

He also commended Action Aid for their efforts in empowering women and children in such community and others around with Cassava and maize processing facilities for women and some other facilities established in different communities to make their burden light. 

"If you are in the city, you are privileged, but we need more advocacy in villages like Ugbedomagu.

"The government, other NGOs and individuals should come in to help these people see a better side of life," Mark Angel added. 

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Ugbadomagwu community in Kogi State
Ugbadomagwu community in Kogi State