Legendary Nollywood actor John Okafor popularly called Mr. Ibu dies

Legendary Nollywood actor John Okafor popularly called Mr. Ibu dies
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Legendary Nollywood actor, John Okafor, fondly known as Mr Ibu, has passed away at the age of 62.

After months of battling a series of health issues, the actor died at Evercare Hospital in Lagos on Saturday, March 2, 2024, but his family is yet to release an official statement.

The public was unaware of the severity of the actor’s health issues until he celebrated his 62nd birthday in October 2023, visibly in discomfort in a hospital room.

His family revealed he was struggling with clotting of blood in his leg, and solicited for the public’s help with his medical bills. After seven surgical operations, doctors amputated one of the actor’s legs in a bid to save his life.

“The first amputation (of his leg) didn’t completely correct his health predicament so the doctors had to go ahead to amputate (the) same leg further to ensure we didn’t lose him,” his daughter, Valatine Okafor, said in a December 2023 statement.

Okafor, who celebrated the 40th year of his film career in September 2023, is one of Nollywood’s most celebrated comic actors with many starring roles to his credit.

Playing the lovable and bumbling titular character in Mr Ibu endeared the comedian to millions of fans in Nigeria and across Africa. He reportedly passed away at Ever Care Hospital

Speculations regarding Okafor’s well-being had been circulating for some time, fueled by his prolonged absence from the public eye. Rumors about his health status intensified, sparking concerns among fans about his condition. However, Okafor’s health struggles were not new to the public eye.

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In 2019, the actor made headlines when he alleged that some of his domestic workers, under the influence of his kinsmen, attempted to poison him due to jealousy over his successful career. This shocking revelation shed light on the darker side of fame and the challenges faced by public figures.

In a subsequent interview with Vanguard Newspaper, Okafor candidly shared his experiences battling illness and adversity. He revealed details of his medical journey, recounting moments where he felt on the brink of death. However, Okafor expressed gratitude for the intervention of skilled medical professionals who helped him navigate through his health crisis.

Reflecting on his ordeal, Okafor acknowledged the malice of his detractors and the joy they derived from his suffering. Yet, he found solace in his faith and the belief that divine intervention spared his life. His near-death experience served as a profound lesson, prompting him to cherish each moment and appreciate the gift of life.

The passing of John Okafor leaves a void in the Nigerian entertainment landscape, but his legacy as a comedic genius and beloved actor will endure. His contributions to Nollywood have left an indelible mark, and his absence will be keenly felt by fans and colleagues alike.

As we mourn the loss of a true legend of the Nollywood industry, we also celebrate the joy and laughter he brought into our lives through his performances. Mr Ibu’s legacy will remain in the hearts of those who cherished his work.

Check out one of his songs below: “Do You Know”

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