Colleagues mourn Enebeli ‘Andrew’ Elebuwa

Enebeli Elebuwa

Colleagues who worked with veteran actor, Enebeli Elebuwa, who died on Wednesday in an Indian hospital, have commiserated with his family over his death. They described the incident as a loss to the industry and the nation as a whole.

Prior to his death, the actor had been battling a prolonged illness and was said to be showing signs of recovery.

Elebuwa, who died at the age of 65, was fondly referred to by friends as ‘Andrew’ because of his role in a Federal Government’s public service advertisement in 1984.
He shot into prominence with the advertisement in 1984, where he advised Nigerians against travelling abroad but to find ways of making the country a better place to live in.
Dejumo Lewis, who featured alongside the late actor in the television programme, The Village Headmaster,said Elebuwa succeeded in making his mark in the industry before his demise.
He said the actor would be missed greatly in the Nigerian movie industry.
Lewis said, “Enebeli made his mark in television broadcasting, as a graphic artist and producer. He worked with me briefly on Village Headmaster. He discovered and portrayed his acting capability in a role as Andrew in a Federal Government public service advert in 1984 by which he became an instant star.
“This prompted his venturing into professional acting where he overshadowed many. Elebuwa had a profound worldview which he brought to bear positively in everything he did. He would be missed greatly, particularly in the Nigerian movie industry.”
Tunji Bamishigbin said he and the late actor were colleagues when they worked together at Nigerian Television Authority. He described Elebuwa as a friend, brother and a wonderful colleague.
“We were together at NTA in the same office working on the programme, The Village Headmaster, where he was assistant producer/director and actor. A multi tasking man; he was passionate about what he did.
“A detribalised Nigerian; though from Ikwale in Delta State, he spoke Yoruba and Hausa excellently. May his good soul rest in the Lord,” Bamishigbin said.
Veteran movie producer, Tunde Kilani, described Andrew’s death as painful and unfortunate. Also, popular Nollywood actress Mercy Johnson, said Elebuwa was a motivator who was never short of good pieces of advice.
Movie producer and actor Kunle Afolayan said he found it difficult to believe that the actor was dead, adding that he was yet to wake up from a bad dream.
Ben King Okojie said that his role in the 1984 FG public service advertisement had a positive impact on the youth at that time, adding that till the demise of the actor, his name was untainted.
“His iconic role as Andrew No Checkout made many teenagers and adults during the military regime of (Maj-Gen. Muhammadu) Buhari and (Brig. Tunde) Idiagbon to really look inward and more patriotic. He was what national icons are made of. Till he had his last breathe, there was no scandal or controversy recorded against his name,” Okojie said.
While commenting on the death of Elebuwa, Jimmy Johnson expressed anger. He stated that it was a shame that Nigerians would not celebrate their heroes while they were alive.

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