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Yomi Obileye: Now death has stricken

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Oh my God! He was to be back on Palace set with us. I have been postponing speaking with him for the last two weeks. I planned to visit him after the lockdown.

Now death has stricken.

Uncle Yomi was a great jolly good fellow. He was with us in Tade Ogidan’s Hostages between the late 80s & 1991, a shoot that took us about two years to complete due to so many factors.

We all just left Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) and Tade had kept the Hostages script with him for long, waiting for the opportunity that would make it happened.

With little money, Tade family’s saving (May God watch over baba, Tade’s late dad whose tolerance for our excesses was legendary) as we turned his house to studio, office making him to move from one section of the house to another for us to use any space we chose, even in his retirement. It was in the midst of this that uncle Yomi came in as part of our ambitious film before Nollywood was dreamt of.

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Having confirmed our decision to have him played one of the leads, Tade and l left Lagos on a Friday around 3pm for lbadan. We traveled through Abeokuta to check my wife ,who was then an accountant of a bank in Abeokuta.

After a late lunch, we both dosed off and woke up around 7:00pm ready to face lbadan; disregarding my wife objection to the risky journey through the Odeda road that was under repair and being our first time traveling on that road. The car we were traveling in was a fairly used BMW 2 series.

We eventually arrived in lbadan around 9:00pm, got to uncle Yomi’s house at about 9:30 p.m. He was all over us, bothering about what we would like for dinner and within an hour of our arrival, his wife had prepared sumptuous meal of varieties.

lt was over dinner we discussed about reason for our visit. We were not there for his consideration of playing the role, but to inform him to accept the play.

We were through by 10:30pm and set to depart for Lagos, uncle Yomi objected; telling us that our rooms had been prepared.

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For us, we must return. Because of logistics ahead in our pre-production stage, we quickly lied to him that we already book into a hotel as soon as we arrived in lbadan. He reluctantly agreed with suspicious disposition.

We got on the Lagos/lbadan highway, Tade behind the wheels driving like a fugitive trying to escape a thousand patrol car chasing us; my heart filled my mouth through the dangerous speed.

Next was uncle Yomi finally joining us in late 89 to commence shoot that took us about two years of several postponement to gather money.

Many times, uncle Yomi would used his money to feed some and dash to several others.

The most striking thing that stood him out as a compassionate character was when he was finally paid for the job he stood with us through thick and thin to achieve. He gave his entire fee to one rascal among the crew, a friend of the house that l would not want to mention his name to go and settle some debt he was owing. This his unusual and onerous act left an indelible mark in my heart for him.

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The same scenario repeated itself when Ralph and I had to visit him in lbadan to cast him for the lead in Palace in 1997.

We arrived lbadan late as usual and he and his wife were there to receive us, with yet a sumptuous dinner along with our hand bag. He insisted that we stayed in his house since it was late for us to go back to Lagos, but we told him of the hotel rooms we had booked.

Uncle Yomi was with us in Palace; going and coming from lbadan for his shoot. As usual, he became a father figure for everyone; both the crew and other artistes.

l can recall the bond between him and Funlola Aofiyebi, who was playing her daughter. He was there to manage our challenges with us; he once slept on a foam in Ralph’ s place.

For the above reasons and many more, l got attached to him and his wife. I was always there to play the role of a good younger brother.

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Some eight or nine years ago, he took ill as he suffered stroke about three times, but came out of it and still acted in couple of films and series. He was to return with us on Palace and we asked him to leave his hair unattended to for almost a year for his role, for which he did.

We were still waiting for our partner, Africa Independent Television (AIT), to kick start another season that would involve him. He had gotten the scripts for over six months, still waiting ooooh my God.

Only to receive a text message from Sola Sobowale, another very closed artiste like sister to uncle Yomi that he has passed on. She was able to see him at the hospital before he passed on.

I have been procrastinating to pay him a surprise visit for the past four weeks before the lockdown, but l never got to see my dear uncle Yomi, a friendly, humble, lovely, kindhearted, ever in joyous mood, always wanting to ensure his surroundings are bubbling and no one is in a bad mood.

When you engaged him on your set, he would take over the management of peace, tranquility and happy moment for all.

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Uncle Yomi is gone like a flower plucked at its blossom.

Uncle Yomi, with tears streaming down from my eyes, trying to put this together since yesterday, …all the angels shall be waiting to receive you.

The good Lord will accept your soul and make you comfortable in the best zone of heaven.

You were a good great man, a quality thespian with class, taste candour sleep well my uncle.

Uncle Yomi sleep well!

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l shall use the Ramadan to pray for you. It’s a period when prayers are answered by God. We shall see and March on to glory on the day of judgement.

Adieu Babatunde Baker of Palace!

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List of winners at the 10th Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards

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The grand spectacle of the Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards (AMVCA) unfolded on Saturday, 11th May 2024, at the prestigious Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos State. It was a night dedicated to honoring excellence and celebrating the remarkable talent within the African film and television industry.

Hosted by the seasoned master of ceremonies, IK Osakioduwa, for the remarkable tenth consecutive year, the event radiated with excitement and anticipation as the winners of the coveted awards were announced.

Among the highlights of the evening, Chimezie Imo was honored with the Trailblazer Award, a testament to his innovative contributions to the industry. Additionally, the esteemed Industry Merit Awards were bestowed upon two legends of Nigerian cinema: Richard Mofe Damijo and Idowu Philips, affectionately known as Iya Rainbow, in recognition of their profound impact and enduring legacies.

From Best Digital Content Creator to Best Lead Actor and Actress, the stars of the African entertainment scene shone brightly as they were recognized for their outstanding contributions to movie production and storytelling.

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Here’s the full list of the 10th edition of the AMVCA winners:

BEST DIGITAL CONTENT CREATOR

MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE

ISAAC AYOMIDE OLAYIWOLA ( LAYI WASABI)

BEST INDIGENOUS LANGUAGE (WEST AFRICA)

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JAGUN JAGUN (THE WARRIOR)

FEMI ADEBAYO

BEST SHORT FILM

BROKEN MASK

KAGHO IDHEBOR

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BEST SCRIPTED MNET ORIGINAL

SLUM KING

CHINENYE NWORAH

BEST UNSCRIPTED MNET ORIGINAL

NWUYEE BEKEE (FOREIGN WIVES)

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NNODIM CHIGOZIE GEORGE

BEST INDIGENOUS LANGUAGE (EAST AFRICA)

ORMOILAA OGOL (THE STRONG ONE)

LAVERA NDANUNGA

BEST INDIGENOUS LANGUAGE (SOUTHERN AFRICA)

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MOTSHAMEKO O KOTSI

MOLEBOGENG MAPOTLAKELE MAMAKOKO & JOSEPH MERLIN TAFOU WAMBO

BEST MULTICHOICE TALENT FACTORY MOVIE

HER DARK PAST

 

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BEST INDIGENOUS M-NET ORIGINAL

IRORA IYA

ADENIYI JOSEPH OMOBULEJO & ALLEN ONYIGE

 

 

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Non – Voting categories

 

MOVIE CATEGORIES

SERIES/FILM
WINNER

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

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JAGUN JAGUN

LOLA AWE

BEST MOVIE

BREATH OF LIFE

BB SASORE, DERIN ADEYOKUNNU & EKU EDEWOR

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BEST WRITING MOVIE

FUNMILAYO RANSOME-KUTI

TUNDE BABALOLA

BEST MAKE UP

MAMIWATA

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CAMPBELL PRECIOUS AREBAMEN

BEST WRITING TV SERIES

VOLUME

MONA OMBOGO

BEST ART DIRECTION

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OVER THE BRIDGE

ABISOLA OMOLADE

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

BREATH OF LIFE

ADEMOLA ADEDOYIN

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BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

OVER THE BRIDGE

KC OBIAJULU

BEST DIRECTOR

BREATH OF LIFE

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BB SASORE

BEST DOCUMENTARY

LOBOLA, A BRIDE’S TRUE PRICE?

SIHLE HLOPHE

BEST EDITING

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THE BLACK BOOK

ANTONIO RIBEIRO

BEST SERIES (SCRIPTED)

ITURA

JAMES KALU OMOKWE

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BEST SERIES (UNSCRIPTED)

GH QUEENS

AYEBEA ‘BZ’ DARKO

BEST SOUND DESIGN

BLOOD VESSEL

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GRAY JONES OSSAI & FISAYO ADEFOLAJU

BEST SUPPORT ACTRESS

BREATH OF LIFE

GENOVEVA UMEH

BEST LEAD ACTRESS

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ADIRE

KEHINDE BANKOLE

BEST LEAD ACTOR

WALE OJO

BREATH OF LIFE

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AFRIMA hosting rights: African Union writes Nigeria, South Africa

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The African Union Commission (AUC) has officially invited the governments of Nigeria and South Africa to take advantage of the hosting rights benefits of the next 2 editions of the prestigious annual All Africa Music Awards, AFRIMA.

In a letter bearing reference number HHS/CUL/16/170.23 and signed by the AUC’s Commissioner for Health, Humanitarian Affairs, and Social Development, Her Excellency, Ambassador Minata Samate Cessouma, the AU said the call aligns with its policies for the strategic transformation of Africa through social integration, as outlined in AU Agenda 2063, the Charter for African Cultural Renaissance, and the AU Plan for Action on Cultural and Creative Industry.

The AU describes AFRIMA as a global platform for celebrating and developing Africa’s diverse musical talents and cultural heritage, highlighting the significant opportunities hosting the prestigious awards presents for the selected host country

“Since 2014, the African Union has been partnering and working successfully with AFRIMA to develop, celebrate and promote African music globally for integration/inclusivity, economic prosperity and world peace via its seven core pillars: (1) Music Awards, (2) Music Festivals; (3) AFRIMA creative Academy; (4) Talent Discovery and Promotions; (5) Music Business Hub; (6) Advocacy; (7) Advisory and Policy Debates,” the letter reads.

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“AFRIMA is the biggest and longest-running music award and platform in Africa, with a huge global appeal, diaspora audience, and youthful fans. The main event events of AFRIMA are usually broadcast live to over 84 countries around the world after a continental and global roadshow, with thousands of music artists, actors, celebrities, members of the diplomatic corps, professionals in the creative space, tourists, media and fans from all over the world converging on the host country.”

A letter received by the Minister of Art, Culture and Creative Economy, Hannatu Musawa, on behalf of the Nigerian government, a copy of which was seen by our correspondent, reads, “Nigeria, as a beacon in African music with huge young population, should it accept to host AFRIMA, stands a promising chance in elevating the country’s positive global presence, bolstering artistic, tourism and economic growth, fostering cultural exchange and job creation, and reinforcing a positive perception of our continent’s rich cultural heritage on a global scale.”

The successful last edition of AFRIMA was hosted and partnered by the government of the Republic of Senegal in the city of Dakar. The hosting rights of AFRIMA are usually bestowed on a country that shows capacity and commitment to meet the requirements and conditions.

The Acting Director for Social Development, Culture, and Sports Division, African Union Commission, Ms. Angela Martins confirmed the invitation and request to bid for the hosting rights extended to the two countries.

She said that AFRIMA provides a unique opportunity for the host country to showcase its rich cultural heritage, develop its music sector, promote tourism, and stimulate economic growth.

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“This call to action comes as part of the AU’s commitment to promoting cultural exchange, unity, and economic development across the African continent. We urge the governments of Nigeria and South Africa to seize this opportunity to strengthen intra-African collaboration (in line with AFCTA) within the music industry and enhance their international visibility positively.

“AFRIMA serves as a premier platform for African artists in Africa and diaspora to showcase their talent, gain international exposure, and connect with audiences worldwide,” she said.

She added that as the bidding process is itching towards its deadline, the African Union remains committed to providing support and guidance to ensure a successful hosting of AFRIMA.

She also reiterated the AUC’s readiness to work closely with the selected host country to maximize the impact of the event on the African music industry, tourism, general economic growth, and socio-cultural landscape.

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After successful London premiere, Aiyefele Movie to screen in all major cinemas across lagos from May 3rd (Photos)

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On Friday 5th April 2024, Double Tees Productions premiered and screened the movie Aiyefele at the iconic Odeon Imac Cinema in Greenwich London.

The premiere red carpet was graced by hosts of Nollywood celebrities, from one of the lead actors Biola Adebayo, Bimbo Oshin. To celebrity guests Rykado Agbor and a host of others.

Aiyefele Movie (A Community on the Brink) is a riveting feature film that follows the journey of a community always on the brink of desolation; it struggles to find a cure for the plague killing its citizens as its beliefs and practices conflict with the new faith brought by missionaries. The people are threatened by a self-destructive culture,
assaulted by an endemic disease and oppressed by some evil forces until an unexpected visitor arrives to lead them from the drumbeats of sorrow to a vibrant tune of freedom.

Aiyefele features a respected ensemble cast in the industry, including Odun Adekola, Mercy Aigbe, Femi Branch, Bimbo Oshin, Biola Adebayo, Rotimi Salami, Lara Aiyeomoni and Akinola Akano. It is directed by
the award-winning Seun Olaiya.

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Set in 18th Century Nigeria and England, Aiyefele takes its audiences on an emotional journey of sacrifice, reflection, and redemption.
Executive Producers are Toyin Moore and Omotayo Utomi.

Feedback from the Premiere in London has been hugely positive, with the audience describing the movie as interesting, funny, emotional, with a wow effect and an immersive experience.

AIYEFELE Movie will be showing at Bluepictures cinema in City Mall Lagos from Friday 3rd May 2024.

Check out pictures from the London Premiere below.

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