Obi Madubogwu
Obi Madubogwu died of diabetic complications.
Unfortunately Nollywood has lost yet another vibrant actor to a mere diabetes. We all have read about the death of Obi Madubogwu after a long battle with diabetes. As always, it’s very easy for Nigerians and his colleagues to type ‘RIP’, and some will write lengthy tributes and that’s it. We unfortunately wait to hear, read and comment on the death of another actor. I’m aggrieved and compelled to write this article to maybe raise the awareness in the consciousness of actors and the Nollywood body. It is not ok that a so called Nollywood celebrity dies of diabetic complications. That shows ignorance and the body needs to do more for it’s members.

However, for people who have better insight, there needs to be more probe in the deaths of these actors and creative leaders of the country. These deaths need to raise questions on the realities of the industry. Nollywood as successful as we’re led to believe it has been, we have seen that for the industry to be losing their very best at a wimp shows that the industry hasn’t even started. This also makes one to question what the ‘success’ that is talked about actually is based on.

The question is, the lifestyle that this industry make it’s members to adopt or should I say, the lifestyle that these actors copy from probably Hollywood, is it realistic with the realities on ground in Nigeria? Nollywood need to understand their role in the society. You have the power to influence and change a culture. The culture of Nigeria where ignorance, mediocrity and helplessness thrive, you should be the ones educating people and changing the mind-set through well written, researched scripts. But if you fall trap of these same issues then Nigeria indeed is in trouble.

Take for instance, in Nigeria, the health system is nothing to write home about, the economy is not yet properly developed to carter for the lifestyle they exhibit. Actors need to calm down. They need to understand the climate they are in and make reasonable decisions on the lifestyle that they live to accommodate the realities on ground.

As an industry, the Nollywood associations should have in place a policy to that looks after their members’ health and wellbeing. There needs to be proper education of actors and creatives in the industry. If it means levying members or making it compulsory for members to attend certain workshops on self development, healthcare, then let it be. They need to have organised fund for members to access for their medical needs. They need to hire Doctors and medical staff that are constantly look after and advice them on health issues. They need to adopt an attitude of responsible lifestyle and respect the advice of their doctors and healthcare givers.

Unfortunately, Africans think appearing on TV or being a movie star is enough to make you a celebrity. If you want to live a life of a celebrity, then you must be prepared to have enough resources to care for such lifestyle. You must take your health seriously. Have health insurance, you no longer eat anyhow, drinking excessively, and what they call ‘enjoying’ life is detrimental to your life it’s self.

It should be a shame for Nollywood actors to have their members die from mere preventable and treatable illnesses. It should be a shame for the body to have their members recourse to begging for donations when they fall ill after living what looks like a lavish lifestyle.

In the last few years we have seen several Nollywood celebrities having to share undignified images of themselves in their terminal illness in a bid to persuade people to donate money for their treatments. Often when it has become too late for their health to be revitalised. Actors still alive, must learn from their unfortunate mates and start now to make amendments to the lifestyle that they lead.

You do not need to be on everybody’s face to be a star or celebrity, you do not need to impress anyone to be seen as a celebrity. You need to learn to improve and hone your craft, be exceptional and people will spot you as a start. Nollywood should concentrate on making the industry financially viable for their members than to create a culture of make believe in a system where the medical system is next to nothing. Instead invest in building or partnering with a sophisticated specialist hospital in Nigeria where you’re members are constantly looked after.

What’s the point of living a larger than life make believe and still die a shameful broke death stripping yourself of all dignity because of simple diabetes, hypertension, malaria and other minor illnesses which are preventable and curable?

Being an actor doesn’t make you invincible rather, it exposes you to so many dangers. Therefore Nollywood as a body needs to do more to protect it’s members, must do more to preserve and nourish the health of it’s members. You people must learn to respect other people’s craft and learn to humbly seek for help, advice and assistance from other professionals in areas you do not have knowledge of.

Nollywood, It is a shame to have your members dying of diabetes, malaria and other preventable, curable illnesses. This shows how unintelligent you lot are. It doesn’t show knowledge, understanding and wisdom.

Yes, I said it. there needs to be a complete shake up of the industry on all levels. Have your members informed, educated and responsible. That is what stars do.

I do not want to report about any other Nollywood death this year. Take care of your health first.