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Is appalling to hear Chioma Chukwuka, Ireti Doyle, Tonto have all left their husbands- Pete Edochie

“If you come to our industry today, most of our girls who got married some 23 years ago have all left their husbands, from beginning to the end”.
Nollywood veteran actor Pete Edochie has expressed shock at the rate of failed marriages in his industry.

Edochie, 76, in a recent interview with media personality Chude Jideonwo, said he was surprised to learn that some of his female colleagues have either been separated or divorced from their husbands.

During the interview, he also revealed likely reasons behind the increased rates of divorces among Nollywood acts.

The father-of-six, who has been married to his wife Josephine for over 50 years, said, “ If you come to our industry today, most of our girls who got married some 23 years ago have all left their husbands, from beginning to end. I am even shocked to hear that Chioma Chukwuka also left her husband, Ireti Doyle, and Tonto Dikeh; they’ve all left their husband.

“You know a vow is taken when you get married, for better for worst, not for better for us; for better for worst. You would always think that it is greener on the other side, and that is the mistake they all made.”


Chioma, Ireti and Tonto
Of the actresses Edochie mentioned, Chioma’s divorce surprised Nollywood fans, as she is one celebrity who has managed to keep her personal life private.

Chioma married Franklyn Akpotha in 2006. After 15 years of their union, in 2022, it was rumoured that they parted ways. She reverted to her maiden name and often refers to herself as a single mum in several Instagram posts.

Ireti, on the other hand, married actor Patrick Doyle in 2004 and in January 2023, the actress confirmed their divorce.
Her ex-husband is now in a romantic relationship with a lady known as Funmilayo.

Tonto and Olakunle Churchill called it quits in 2017, two years after they married
The Anambra-State-born veteran actor also revealed his favourite colleague, whom he enjoys working with.

He said, “Of all the girls who have played my daughter in films, somehow it’s Genevieve Nnaji that I think I love the most. I have come to look at her as a daughter, and she sees me as a father. She is a very exceptionally brilliant lady.


“Although I have not heard from her lately, ever since I heard that she was a little disturbed, I don’t know how true, but I hope one day she calls me and says I am okay. I have tried calling her.”

The veteran actor, whose career has spanned over 43 years, was recently featured in Genevieve Nnaji’s 2018 Netflix movie, ‘ Lion Heart’.


Acting career
Aside from marriage, the actor, who began his career as a professional journalist in 1967, spoke about his foray into acting, albeit Nollywood.
Speaking about how he transitioned into acting, he said he broke the news to his wife, who in turn encouraged and reaffirmed her confidence in his abilities and talents.

‘‘I was sitting down with my wife in the parlour. Somebody came from Lagos, gave me a bank cheque of N50,000, and said, come to Lagos and act in a film for me; then my salary as a director in a media house was N9,000 monthly.
“ I landed in Lagos, I was doing the film, and then Chico Ejiro gave me a script and N100,000. I got into his set, and then his brother Zeb brought another script, ‘ Close Chapter,’ and he gave me N150,000. By the end of that year, I had earned N750,000, whereas my salary as a director then was N9,000 monthly.’’


Near-death experiences, politics
The veteran, the father of controversial Nollywood actor Yul, also narrated how he had escaped death twice in a road accident.

He said, “On the 14th day of March 1977, at Agwali road, I drove under a stationary trailer in the night and by the grace of God, I came out alive. There was a time when I was coming from Nsukka, and I fell asleep on the wheel and I ran into a trailer, but I came out alive. “

He was also kidnapped in August 2009, but he was later released unharmed.

The revered actor, known for his iconic movie roles, also spoke about the 2023 elections.


He said, “Overseas observers used one word to describe the elections; it lacked transparency. When a white man tells you that something lacks transparency, it simply means such a thing is not clear.

“There is something that Peter Obi said; he said, ‘ I am not querying whosoever was proclaimed the president, no, I am bothered about the process that made the person the president, that is how a brilliant man talks.”

The Laurels International Magazine

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