Star actress, Chika Ike, speaks with JAYNE AUGOYE about her divorce and career
Nollywood actress, Chika Ike, is no stranger to controversy. In the last few months, she managed to keep Nigerians talking about issues surrounding her recent divorce, which she announced on social media, and her frequent holiday trips abroad.
Like most other Nollywood stars who love to keep the gossip mills busy at all times, the leggy actress always appears to be the subject of debates among movie fans.
But, in an interview with our correspondent, Chika denies that she has ever gone out of her way to attract controversy. She says, “I have stopped searching for my name on the Internet. In fact, I don’t bother myself with gossips and negative comments about me any longer. I have a management team that deals with all that.
“When my aides want me to see or read whatever has been written or said about me, they simply draw my attention to it. Celebrities must learn to ignore what people say about them so they can live long and be happy. That is my principle.”
The soft-spoken actress says she owes nobody an apology for sharing some photographs taken during her recent trips to Dubai and France with her fans on Instagram.
“The truth is that I love to travel around the world. If anyone feels hurt by this, that is their business. I love to take pictures during my trips abroad and share them with my fans. I do this so as to educate them. Many of them have never been to these countries. So, whenever I post these images, I have no bad intentions.”
As more celebrities venture into philanthropy and charity related activities, critics have been quick to say that their actions are nothing other than popularity contest. But Chika, who currently runs a non-governmental organisation that caters for the less-privileged, her intentions are genuine.
“I am truly passionate about charity work, but I can’t speak for other people in my shoes. I am the sole financier of my NGO and its activities, though I get some form of assistance from members of my family and my friends. I strongly believe that if you want people to support a particular cause, you have to show and prove that you are able to hold your own any day.”
Although Chika prides herself in being a public figure, she is always careful not to divulge information relating to her personal life. Little wonder, many movie fans hardly knew she was married until they learnt about the breakup with her former husband.
Chika declines to comment on the circumstances that led to the dissolution of her marriage. “I don’t want to talk about the divorce because it is already in the past and I have since moved on. I am still open to marriage and I might give it a second shot because I believe in love. For now, I am most concerned with my own happiness,” she says.
Commenting on the increasing rate of Nigerian celebrity divorces, the actress, who has starred in over 200 Nollywood movies, says, “Celebrities also make mistakes. I don’t think they have a bad time combining their successful careers and managing the home front or their marriages on the side.
“All the talk about some men being afraid to walk up to a female celebrity and ask her out does not make sense to me. Any man that cannot walk up to me and toast me is not manly enough. I don’t have a long list or criteria for my ideal man. All I want is that he must make me happy.”
Ever since she appeared in an epic movie entitled, Mirror of Beauty, which was screened in major cinemas in England, Chika’s career has been on a steady rise.
With the birth of what is now known as the ‘New Nollywood’, the actress who was recently appointed brand ambassador of Bullet Energy Drink, already has her eyes fixed on the big pictures.
She says, “I constantly strive to take part in quality movie productions and I have had cause to turn down some scripts that did not fit in accordingly.
“My greatest desire is to play a living legend in a Nollywood movie, as that will give me so much fulfilment.”
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