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Entertainers who have relocated families abroad

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In recent times, many Nigerians have emigrated from the country, with many more planning to ‘japa’. Apparently, entertainers are not exempt from this. Saturday Beats takes a look at entertainers who still live and work in Nigeria but whose families are abroad
Sanyeri

Majorly because of the comedic roles he plays in movies, many people don’t seem to take actor, Olaniyi Afonja, aka Sanyeri, serious. However, despite his on-screen antics, Sanyeri is one man who has been intentional about raising his family and exposing them to opportunities.

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His beautiful wife, Omolara, and their two sons— Boluwatife and Olasunkanmi—are based in Canada.

In a video which surfaced on the Internet some months ago, many Nigerians were excited by the foreign accent of the children. That was especially so because their father mainly speaks in Yoruba, and cuts the picture of one who has never even travelled outside the country. In the video, the kids urged fans to subscribe to their father’s YouTube channel and other social media accounts.

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Explaining what fatherhood means to him, Sanyeri said in an earlier interview, “Fatherhood means being the head of the home, a husband to a wife, a father to children and fulfilling the obligations and responsibilities that are expected of a man to his wife and children.”

Speaking on how he felt when he welcomed his first child, the actor said, “There is nothing so special about one having a first child. For someone who needs a child and has a wife, when God gives them the gift of the first child, they will be happy and full of joy. Children are gifts and those who get them should be grateful.

“I believe that the best investment I can make in life is for my children to be successful. I cannot jeopardise their future for anything. Either I have much or otherwise, I will do everything within my capacity to ensure that my children will not have any cause in the future to abuse me or describe me as an irresponsible father.”
In an earlier interview with Sunday PUNCH, the actor had stated that he was so poor when he married his wife that the only thing he had to his name were his tribal marks. However, they stuck with him, and over the years, he has grown to become a prominent actor and filmmaker.
Mr Latin
Actor, Bolaji Amusan, aka Mr Latin, is another comic actor that is loved by many. Though based in Abeokuta, Ogun State, Mr Latin’s wife, Ronke, and children (a son and daughter) live in Dublin, Ireland.

Mr Latin married Ronke in 1999 and their relationship has continued to blossom over the years.

The actor, who is the current President of the Theatre Arts and Movie Practitioners Association of Nigeria, is particularly fond of his wife and he makes no secret about that.

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Speaking on why he decided for his family to stay abroad, he said in an interview some years ago, “It was the idea of the two of us. There was a long strike by teachers at a time and we thought such would not give our children what we really wanted for them. We decided to relocate but because of the nature of my job, I cannot stay over there with them.”

On how they have been coping with a long-distance relationship, Latin said, “We speak almost 10 times every day. I wake them up with telephone calls in the morning to speak with my wife and children till they are off to school. We also chat on WhatsApp and have video calls almost every day. I visit them as well, and they come to Nigeria too.”
The actor also stated that he had never been tempted to marry another wife despite his wife not being in the country with him. He said, “I can never marry another wife. My wife is my mother, sister, friend and confidant. She is a very loyal and trustworthy person. I don’t have any reason to marry another wife.”

Okunnu
Even without speaking, actor, Wale Akorede, aka Okunnu, send his fans reeling with laughter because of his funny mannerisms. Though he started his acting career in 1984, it wasn’t until some years later, that he started getting the much needed recognition in the industry.

However, despite the carefree character he usually portrays in movies, Okunnu does not joke with the welfare of his family.

His wife, Wumi, and three kids— Jumoke, Hassan and Modupe— are based in Canada. At a time, the actor also used to live in Saudi Arabia, but he returned to Nigeria after a while.

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Speaking on why he left Saudi Arabia, he had said, “Yes, there was a point my life when I relocated to Saudi Arabia, but after giving it a second thought, I realised there is no place like home. Nigeria is my country and no matter the challenges (here), we just have to make it work. I don’t regret coming back to my country.”

In an earlier interview with Sunday PUNCH, the actor stated that he was attracted by her beauty and the fact that she was hard to get. He had said, “It was her beauty and the fact that she was hard to get (that attracted me). I don’t like cheap ladies. Her tough stance made me continue to ‘trouble’ her. I also prayed and all what I saw in my dream was what she also saw. I was surprised and that also propelled me to go ahead.”

However, though his family lives outside the country, Okunnu is not immune from the hardship in Nigeria. In a social media rant some months ago, the actor lamented the sorry state of the country. Speaking in Yoruba, he said, “If we keep watching and don’t speak up, it is because we don’t want to things to spoil. Nigeria is bad. Whether men, women, children or elderly people; all those who have a hand in making the nation what it is today, their lives will also be bad from generation to generation.

“The country is really in a bad condition. I can’t say there is a particular sector that is working optimally. If we cannot enjoy our country as citizens, then we’re like foreigners.”
Sharing his thoughts on why many celebrity marriages don’t stand the test of time, he said in the same interview, “Marriage is not something one jumps into. One needs to pray well and be sure because it is for life. Any marriage can collapse and it is not only celebrity marriages that don’t last. People talk about marriages of celebrities because they are famous people.”

Timi Dakolo
Timi Dakolo’s voice is one that has melted the hearts of many over the years. married to a photographer, Busola, and blessed with three children— Alexander, Zoe and Hallel— their marriage has had its fair share of trials. Recall that in 2019, Busola had accused a popular pastor, Biodun Fatoyinbo, of raping her many years ago in Kwara State. Though Fatoyinbo was eventually cleared by the courts, Busola and Timi maintain that the deed actually happen.

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Though they seem to have moved from that episode, several feelers suggest that Busola and the children have relocated to the United Kingdom. Busola is said to be attending a university in the UK to further her education. The children are also said to have started attending school there.

Earlier in the year, Timi had joked that barely that Halled had developed an accent barely two weeks after resuming school in her new country of residence.

Recall that some time ago, Timi paid them a surprise visit. A video posted on social media showed how excited his family was at seeing him without prior notice.

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Lifestyle

Godwin Maduagu comes out as gay after being blackmailed over sex tape

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Nollywood actor Godwin Maduagu has bravely come out as gay after being blackmailed by former friends over a sex tape.

According to the Daily Post Nigeria, Maduagu was blackmailed over the video and became “depressed” to the point of feeling suicidal.

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Homosexuality is illegal in Nigeria and publishable by up to 14 years in prison; he said in a previous interview that the impact of the video being leaked in 2021 led to him missing out on jobs and “getting broke”.

However in an Instagram story on Tuesday (27 September), the actor included an LGBTQ+ pride flag, revealing his family “saved me” with their support.

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Godwin Maduagu said: “After getting a better life for myself, my close friends set me up, blackmailed me, and leaked my sex tape. I became depressed and almost committed suicide.

“My family saved me by giving me words of encouragement and advice that kept me going. Look at me now living my truth because I’ve now gotten a strong thick skin.

“Love is love. Say no to blackmail.”

Nollywood stars have previously stood up against the treatment of the LGBTQ+ community in Nigeria despite the difficulty in speaking out; even those who attend a wedding or operate an LGBTQ+ nightclub in the country can be sentenced to 10 years in prison.

In July 2022, Nigerian actor Uche Maduagwu was arrested after appearing to come out as gay and defending the LGBTQ+ community on Instagram, despite stressing that he is “not gay”, but saying he wanted to use his “celebrity status [to fight] for this beautiful community”.

That same month, actor Yul Edochie spoke out about the horrific sentence of death by stoning given to three gay men, aged 20, 30 and 70.

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Why I must marry from Abeokuta- Bimbo Akisanya spills

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Nollywood actress Bimbo Akisanya has sent a message to her potential suitors on the criteria she will be looking out for in her man.

The Yoruba actress who has been beamoning her single status for the past weeks took to her Instagram page to reveal the particular tribe she would be picking her suitor from.

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According to her, she would only marry a man who is from Abeokuta.

Her reason is that, Abeokuta men are very romantic. To prove her point, Bimbo posted a WhatsApp screenshot of a potential suitor eulogising her in his dialect.

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The actress added that she woke up to his romantic gesture and this has changed her mindset on the type of man she wants.

“So sweet waking up to this, I must marry omo Abeokuta this time around abi bawo????”.

Bimbo Akisanya had sent a strong message to her future husband as she bragged about her latest win over a man.

The mother of one shared a video of herself enjoying her favourite game, table tennis, while she boasted of her win over her partner, who was, unfortunately, a man.

Sharing the video on her Instagram page, Bimbo Akisanya urged her future husband to ensure that there was table tennis in their house.

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She wrote: Table tennis, my best game ever
And of course, I won. I won a man
Dear future husband, please make sure there’s table tennis in the house.

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Lifestyle

Colleague celebrates Segun Arinze as Black Arrow turns 57

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A popular movie producer and director, Francis Onwochei, has described a colleague and the former president of Actors Guild of Nigeria, Segun Arinze, as a consistent thespian.

Fondly called Black Arrow, a name gained from playing a role in the 1996 classic movie Silent Night by the late filmmaker Chico Ejiro, Segun Padonou Aina, started his career professionally as a singer and an actor.

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In a heartwarming ovation, Onwochei described the respected actor, who is also president of Voiceover Artists of Nigeria, as a distinguished colleague.

“Today we celebrate our very dear Segun Arinze aka “Black Arrow”.

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“What is special with this distinguished colleague of mine is his unique background. Segun though born in Anambra state is of the Padonou family in Badagry, Lagos State, who grew up in both Kwara and Kaduna States. This will account for his dexterity speaking the three major Nigerian languages; Igbo, Yoruba and Hausa.

“A product of the University of Ife, thoroughbred actor and singer, I recall that after years of acting on stage and singing, Segun gained national prominence with his star performances.

“At the height of his career he rose to become President, Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) and currently serves as president, Voice Over Artistes of Nigeria.

“Arinze has remained consistent in the acting profession since the mid 80s on stage and early 90s on motion picture. Some of his notable appearances are Vuga, Tatoo, Across the Niger,Gold Statue, Family on Fire, Oloture,Anini and the unforgettable Silent Night which brought him to National prominence where he also earned the sobriquet “Black Arrow”.

“Segun Arinze lives in Lagos, married to his darling wife Julie, and they have children.

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“Please, join me lets celebrate my fellow Anansa Playhouse (1985) team member as he turns 57years today 24th of September. May God grant you many fruitful years on earth in happiness. Happy birthday,” Francis Onwochei wrote.

Freelanews joins Onwochei to celebrate Black Arrow.

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