Friends, Nollywood, govt abandoned me — ailing star, Peter Bruno
The Ogwashi-Uku, Delta State, born actor who narrated his ordeal in tears to The Nigerian Compass on Sunday, recently said he is bitter with nis colleagues though he prayed God to touch their lives. He revealed how everyone including some of the young actors and actress he mentored in the industry abandoned him since the stroke he suffered.
The actor who spoke to The Nigerian Compass on Sunday in Asaba, the Delta State capital, where he is recuperating also expressed his disappointment with Delta State Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Mr. Richard Mofe Damijo (a.k.a. RMD), a close friend of his, whom he claimed suddenly ignored him.
"This man Richard, I remember we did a lot of things together before now.TJut that is the world for you. In fact, he organised and hosted me when I visited Asaba, when I was healthy. He Eromised this and that. ut the moment I had this problem he started dodging me. I remember one clay that I managed to get to his office in Asaba to seek his assistance. Upon seeing me, approaching from afar he told his personal assistance to tell me that he was not around. But he did not know that I saw him from a very far place.
That is human beings for you. For me this stroke have thought me a lesson and I havelearned not to put my trust in any man as my bible tells me.
"Up till now, many of them believed I would die."
Bruno said that since his travails started, he has not received a common phone call from any of his former colleagues in Nollywood "not to talk of assistance." He said that many rather prefer to hear his obituary or any other bad news as they have even started spreading rumor that he is dead.
"I had a stroke and that was the end of it. I was unconscious, and if you are unconscious you are dead. It was when I opened my eyes that I realised that I was in a church here in Delta State. I don't even know when they brought me down to this place. When I opened my eyes, I was so hungry.
I had not eaten for along time. All I could remember was that I was in admission for a long time before they took me to a church where God healed me.
"Again, all I can say now is "Thank my God that I am alive. I have also given my life to Jesus Christ as you can see that I am now a Pastor," Bruno said.
He said that when he would not recall exactly when he was hit by the strange illness as one of the effect of stroke is one that makes one to forget hisjpast.
"If I tell you that this was the particular day I had this stroke then I did not have stroke. Up till now, I am still trying to find out how this stroke hit me and how they brought me here in Asaba. Because when you are hit with stroke you will even forget your own name. I forgot my name. In fact I never knew I still exist. Up to the time they took me to the bible school I never knew. That is stroke for you. I pray that no man experiences it. I am happy, T getting better. Goa is in control. And I will notgive glory to any man but God who has healed me."
Though sidelined from for the past one year, the popular actor also thanked God that the stroke did not that snuff life out of him. He noted that the journey of his life in the past one year has been an uncharted script that has taken him from the throes of death to the land of the living.
"Let me telF you the truth. After I had this stroke I did not know how I was looking. That is why I am not happy with this so-called people you call my colleagues. But I forgive all of them because God has transformed my life. Do you know that some of them that I had hoped on have not even made any effort to assist me and 1 believe that they are all aware of my present condition? I remember there were some of them I met recently. Do you know that when they saw me they were surprise because of the way they were looking, at me? They made me look like a Methuselah. They never recognised me because my face was not looking good."
Bruno who has featured in numerous movies and television productions again thanked God for being there for him since the illness. He said it pained him that he committed all his talent to making Nollywood a big industry and putting smiles on the faces or Nigerians only for his colleagues to forget him at adiretime.
On whether other interests apart from Nollywood has made any effort to assist him, he hinted that government is yet to come to his assistance.
"I went to speak with my state governor and 1 believe ne is a wonderful man. He has a great passion for all Deltans. ut I am still trying my best to see how I could reach to Governor Uduaghan, which has not been possible. I believe that ifl can have access to him, he will assist me. Since this thing happened there has been no single actor that called me to ask about my condition. It is a shame to them.
"Would they say they don't know that 1 have been down in the last one year? I am saying this because I know what I did for many of them. I now feel that the industry is full of ungrateful people."
Bruno said he now feels that many of his colleagues are empty because they have denied themselves the opportunity of showing compassion to their fellow human beings during trying periods. He reasoned that what is to blame is the limit of their understanding of the power of empathy.
"Iactuallydonotthinkit is now necessary to have any bad feeling against any of them because many of them, especially, the young actors think that money is everything. But that is hypocrisy. When one is sick is when he knows who is his or her friend. I thank God that he has not ignored me. God has showered his blessings on me and that is why I am happy," he said.