Pain-in-the-ass: Entertainment stars and their turbulent love lives


Certainty is not the number one casuality in Nigerian Movie Industry known as Nollywood. The love life of Nigerian superstars seem to be number one. The rate at which love and marriage relationships break in Nollywood is something worth being turned into a movie script itself. Love life of Nollywood stars would not have been any of our business, but the fact that they are celebrities and they teach us how to keep our homes on screen, makes it our business.

What is responsible for these breakups? Who is to be blamed and what is the way out? In this first part of a two part series, we shall take a look at those who have been victims:
Fred, Saidi, Eucharia, Ann Njemaze, Stephanie Okereke, Bukky Wright, Patricia Leo and Ali Baba, Rita Domnic and Jim Iyke, Lilian Bach and Johnson Davidson, Carl and Ashionye, Shan George and Okey Bakassi.

1. Saidi and Fathia Balogun

For about five to seven years when they were married, Saidi and Fathia Balogun weathered the storm. They told those who cared to listen that their marriage would last forever. There was even a time of separation, but to prove critics wrong they came back together and had their second baby. After the birth of the second child, most people believed the coming of a baby would bring peace and stability that have been lacking in their marriage. Alas! They were wrong. Saidi and Fathia finally parted ways earlier this year and both of them have ruled out the possibility of ever coming back together.

Governor Tinubu and his wife did everything possible to bring the couple back together, but Fathia, who told close friends that Saidi was always in the habit of beating her and chasing girls rebuffed the former first couple in Lagos on the day of the peace meeting she switched off her phone. Saidi was said to have accused Fathia of sleeping around and gave her relatives undue access to their marital home. Funsho Adeolu and Abdulrasheed – CEO of Corporate Pictures were part of the people Fathia was accused of sleeping with. And it was said that her mother and sisters took permanent residence in their home before the relationship went sour.

2. Fred and Agatha Amata

Before everything came crashing down, these two were the perfect picture of a perfect home. They worked together, went out together, had lovely children together and even attended the same university, the University of Jos. While Fred studied Theatre Arts, Agatha studied Microbiology. Fred became a prominent actor, producer and director in Nollywood, while Agatha who had always been behind the scene, went on to start one of the most enduring and successful shows on air, InsideOut with Agatha.

The news of their break up elicited more empathy than the usual 'we know it will happen' expression associated with Nollywood stars' marital breakup. Although everybody who could do anything tried to bring them together, but all to no avail.

The reason behind their breakup is still being shrouded in secrecy, but an inside source hinted that it was Agatha who called it quits. The source said she complained of Fred's irresponsibility at home, “he is always thinking he's still a small boy. He refused to live up to his responsibility in paying the children's school fees, home upkeep and every other manly responsibility except that of making babies”. We don't know how true that is, but it was one break up too many for lovers of good news to take in.

Fred has gone to father another child through another divorcee actress, Fiberesina Ibinabo, while Agatha was once rumoured to have dated Kingsley Ogoro, a move those sympathetic to Fred's course used in casting aspersion on her reputation.They have both refused to file for divorse so as to avoid media attention which might affect their two children adversely.

3. Shan George and Okey Bakassi

Those who know when they were dating vowed it would lead to marriage. Okey Bakassi was a budding comedian and actor while Shan George had already established herself as an actress of note. And while the love relationship of many years lasted, Shan was everything a devoted wife-to-be should be. She was caring, loving and faithful.

Apparently, she wanted to keep Okey, having suffered a divorce from an earlier under-age marriage which produced two children. Alas! It was heart-wrecking for her when the relationship hit the rocks. Those who know Shan a bit believed she is yet to get over it, though Okey had gone on to marry and have children. They both gave incompartibility as the reason for the breakup but a source hinted that Okey opted out after sensing that marrying the actress would not do his dream of a peaceful home any good. Being a public figure, he wanted a wife who is not a 'public property'.

Shan moved on with Tony Onwosisi, a relationship that did not last two years and the last we heard of her was that she was dating somebody much younger than her.One thing Okey Bakassi and Shan George's relationship proved was that there is no certainty when it comes to love relationship in Nollywood

4. Eucharia Anunobi and Mr. Ekwu

Long before star actress Eucharia Anunobi got married, critics predicted that she was not capable of keeping a home. Why? Her roles in movies portray her as one bitchy and proud individual. So, it was a plesant surprise when she married Mr. Ekwu. They went on to have a child who later turned out a sickler. It was not a surprise when Eucharia's husband ran away from home last year to those who professed they saw the breakup coming.

She was left with their sickler-son while her husband was said to have scampered abroad. Eucharia refuted the claim that she weighed down the marriage with her bitchy attitude and lack of submission. “I was everything a good wife should be while the marriage lasted”, she told us.

A source in the know, however, told us that Ekwu ran away because he was not able to meet his family's financial responsibilities. “He was tired of being a wife in terms of living to his responsibilities and the sickly nature of their child was the straw that broke the camel's back”

5. Ann Njemanze and Segun Arinze

Though Segun Arinze remarried recently, before this, he too was a victim of pain-in-the-ass love in Nollywood alongside star actress, Ann Njemanze. They both got married amidst pomp and pageantry, but the cookies crumbled when both parties started trading blames of infidelity. Segun was accused of chasing girls while Ann also stood accused. They both parted ways amicably, but not until the union produced a baby girl.

6. Patricia Leons and Ali Baba

When the news of their marriage broke, everyone who heard was skeptical of the union. Even the then couple went about the registry in secrecy. Patricia Leons was a top gun corporate guru while Ali Baba kept recording high successes on the comedy scene. Before the ink they both used in signing the marital contract dried, rumour mill went to work. The first news that flittered out was that because Patricia was so much older than Ali, the relationship was lopsided. Talk had it that she was trying to be an elder sister to Ali rather than a wife. And Ali being a real man at Warri tradition would have none of that. The talk of her picking Ali's bills did not also help the matter. Though people who knew how much Ali was charging then vowed there was no iota of truth in that. The relationship eventually collapsed and Patricia moved to Abuja while Ali Baba moved in with one of the mothers of his children, Mary, who turned 40 recently.

7. Lillian Bach and Johnson Davidson

If you've seen Sammie Okposo's video where he sang 'Oruko Jesu lo m'ori mi wu', you must have seen Johnson Davidson. He was the huge man with Tyson hair cut that played the role of a Court Clerk. He dated Lillian Bach longer than most marriages. People have started saying 'Thank you God' on behalf of Lillian. Lillian's marriage song further lend credence to the talk that marriage was in the offing. And as if telling the audience to watch out, Davidson played the role of Lilian's groom in the song. Before long, people started preparing to get called up for their wedding. They were however unprepared for the news when the duo parted ways. Nothing much have been heard of the quiet Davidson, but talk had it that Lillian and Pat Attah (who is now based in Germany) are trying to re-kindle their romance, which was in existence long before Davidson. Why did they part ways? Nobody knows.

8. Kingsley Ogoro and Esse Agesse.

'Husbands are not always there when you need them' was the summation of Esse Agesse, the singer ex-wife of frontline producer and director, Kingsley Ogoro that produced Osuofia in London, The Widow and Across The Niger. Their union was blessed with children while the couple enjoyed reasonable level of success in their career. Esse Agesse became an established singer while the husband is now a producer to be reckoned with. Their marriage came to an abrupt end when Esse was said to have caught her husband in bed with a super star actress. She walked out of the marriage and took permanent residence in Dublin where she was staying temporarily before the incidence. Though, they are yet to file for divorce and Kingsley is not ruling out the possibility of re-union, an insider said “Esse might not be willing to return”. It is not easy to forgive a husband caught in the act”, we were told.

9. Jim Iyke and Rita Dominic

While their love cruise lasted, they both denied ever dating. Apparently, they both sensed it might not lead anywhere. Jim was his usual playboy self though he loved Rita dearly. Rita on the other hand, dotted on Jim and would do anything to make it work. On many occasions, she over-looked or pretended not to see Jim's escapades, but with the rate he was going, it was too hard to overlook. Eventually, it got to her and Jim's unwilliness to commit beyond bed did not help matter. They parted ways amicably and are still friends till date.

Jim is now dating a woman he says is a Jamaican-American (whatever that means) and marriage seems to be the destination. But again, in Nollywood you can never be sure.Rita has since maintained low profile and is trying desperately to keep her love life out of the preying eyes of the press.

10. Carl Raccah and Ashionye

Singer cum budding actress, Ashionye stopped speaking to us when we broke the news of her break up with white lover, Carl Raccah, who is the CEO of Orangootan Records. But that does not take the fact that her relationship is now part of the break-up statistics.From all indications, Carl was tired of the relationship and was not willing and ready to tie the knot, while Ashionye wanted a more secured relationship she believed only marriage could offer. So strong was their love adventure and 'over-flaunting' that rumour mongers went to town with tale of imminent marriage between the two. But instead of marriage, they both walked out on each other amicably.

Though, Ashionye is still under Orangootan, it seems she might be walking out of the deal anytime from now. Another reason adduced for their breakup was the emergence of a new girl under the record lable. The young singer who has the voice of a bird was on various charts across the nation was said to have caught the eyes of Carl and Ashionye would have none of that. She took the matter up with Carl and the lady. That was the beginning of the end. Though, Carl still professes respect for Ashionye, but it was obvious he wanted out of the love relationship when he spoke to us.