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  • Entertainment - Featured
  • Updated: January 24, 2022

Nollywood Actors Who Died In 2021

2021 was a major year of an emotional rollercoaster for most Nigerians. The post-COVID-19 era gave a lot of unforgettable moments, both negatively and positively.

Almost all sectors of the economy had a major fiasco this past year, and although we might boast that we came out of it unscathed, there’s no denying that we still carry some scars of the past year.

One of the sectors that got hit hard is the entertainment industry, with Nollywood being the biggest receiver of heartbreaks. 

Below are a few of the notable losses and deaths Nollywood experienced in 2021.

1. Sound Sultan (Nov 27, 1976 - July 11, 2021)

Sound Sultan

Born Olanrewaju Abdul-Ganiu Fasasi in Jos, Plateau State, Sound Sultan was a Nigerian rapper, singer, songwriter, and actor. 

He was notable for constantly using his music to speak about poverty, societal problems, and government negligence in Nigeria. He was also one of the pacesetters of hip hop in the country. 

On May 12, 2021, it was reported that he was diagnosed with throat cancer (Angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma) and he was going through chemotherapy. As a result of complications from the illness, he died on July 11, 2021, at the age of 44.

2. Rachael Oniga (May 23, 1957 – July 31, 2021)

Rachel Oniga

Born Rachael Tabuno Oniga in Ebutte Meta, Lagos State, Rachael Oniga was one of the foremost actresses in Nigeria, boasting a stellar career in both movies and television.

Her rise to stardom came from her first film ‘Owo Blow’ in 1995. Since then, she has gone on to feature and star in several other high-profile movies.

Oniga was reported to have died from a heart-related ailment in the late hours of July 30, 2021. 

3. Baba Suwe (August 22, 1958 – November 22, 2021)

Baba Suwe

Babatunde Omidina was born in Lagos Island, Lagos, and was a Nollywood star notable for his comedic roles in films and his very distinguishable blackened face.

 His acting career began in 1971 but he emerged into the limelight after he featured in the movie ‘Omolasan’. 

In the early hours of November 22, 2021, a video message surfaced online announcing his death and the pain felt by his son who posted it.

4. Sadiq Daba (1952 – March 3, 2021)

 Sadiq Daba

Born Abubakar Daba, Sadiq Daba was a Nigerian actor and broadcaster who worked for the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA). ‘Cock Crow at Dawn’ was the movie that shot him into the limelight. 

In 2017, he was diagnosed with leukemia and prostate cancer. He was supported with fundraising by several Nigerians.

Daba joined Project Pink Blue on February 3, 2018, to walk against cancer and commemorate World Cancer Day. He died on March 3, 2021, at the Ayinke General hospital in Ikeja, Lagos.

5. Victor Olaotan (February 17, 1952 – August 26, 2021)

Victor Olaotan

He was born in Lagos, Nigeria but he studied at the University of Ibadan, Obafemi Awolowo University Ile-Ife, and Rockets University, United States. 

Olaotan's acting career started when he joined the university theatre group where he met other artists such as Wole Soyinka.

After his father died, he traveled to the United States in 1978 but returned to Nigeria in 2002 to continue his career in acting. His popularity shot up in 2013 after his leading role in a Nigerian soap 'Tinsel'.

Olaotan died on August 26, 2021, due to the trauma of the car accident he had in October 2016 where he suffered severe and extensive brain injuries.

 

6. Jim Lawson Maduike (December 25 – January 18, 2021) 

Jim Lawson Maduike

Jim Lawson Maduike was born in Umunwolave, a small village in Guamo Obire in Nkwere Local Government Area, Imo State, Nigeria.

He was a veteran Nigerian actor, writer, filmmaker, radio broadcaster, voice-over artist, and television personality.

 Before becoming an actor, Maduike was a radio presenter for over twenty-one years. He featured in over 150 Nollywood movies such as 'One-Bullet', 'Royal Madness', 'Empire', and 'Political Control'.

The Nollywood star died on January 9, 2021, a few hours after complaining of body pains. 

7. Bruno Iwuoha (October 6, 1952 – April 10, 2021)

Bruno Iwuoha

The actor was born Bruno Obinna Iwuoha in Abia State and was regarded as one of the leading figures in Nollywood during the late ’80s.

His affluence spread vastly amongst leading notable Nollywood figures so much so that he was nicknamed “Chief”.

Iwuoha starred in more than 50 movies during his lifetime, with his best works including 'Magic Cap', 'Two Bad Boys', 'Days of Hatred', and 'Sins of the Flesh'.

The veteran actor died on April 10, 2021, after losing a protracted battle with diabetes and blindness. He was 68. He died at the National Hospital Abuja. 

 

Written by Odunayo Damilare Daniel

 

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