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Bukky Ajayi: You can’t cry for a life well-lived

Nigerian documentary filmmaker and photographer, Femi Odugbemi, who worked with the late veteran actress Bukky Ajayi, has described her life as one which was well…

Nigerian documentary filmmaker and photographer, Femi Odugbemi, who worked with the late veteran actress Bukky Ajayi, has described her life as one which was well lived and impactful to all around her.
Odugbemi, who was the founding producer of TV series ‘Tinsel,’ spoke to Weekend Magazine. He said: “She was in one of my movies, ‘Bar Beach blues.’ I worked with her when she was in her early 70s.
“Aunty Bukky was working with other artistes who were the ages of her children. We set mark off time for 8am but she was the only artiste who arrived before that time.”
The screenwriter said: “That generation of professionalism can only be associated with the likes of Joke Silva, Taiwo Ajai-Lycett and a few others like them. We need to learn from them because while the opportunity is expanded for the new generation of artistes, this sort of discipline is on the decline.”
Ajayi’s amiable nature, the cinematographer said, is the reason working with her was possible. “She didn’t forget her lines or her roles and was always prepared for whatever task was set before her.
“At the AMVCA this year, not a single person was sitting when she came on stage. You cannot cry for a life well lived,” he said.
The award-wining director said: She invested not only in her career but in people. When one passes on, you are to be celebrated, not mourned.”
The late Amaka Igwe’s daughter, Ruby Igwe, has also joined in the torrent of tributes paid to the great legend.
Ruby, who met the late Ajayi as part of her mother’s production cast in, ‘Fuji house of commotion,’ said on kemifilani.com that: “I’m so glad the AMVCAs celebrated you when they did. ‘Fuji house of commotion’ was how we crossed paths, but your creative career spanned decades, several sectors and genres.”
Expressing pride at how much the late star achieved, and the lives she impacted, Miss Igwe added that: “I have this sinking feeling, though, that the creative industries’ infrastructural deficits failed you. We should have been celebrating every decade.
“You should have been teaching in some academy, so that young hopefuls understand how it was done. There should have been documentaries, stars on walk of fame. We could have done so much better,” she said.
Bukky Ajayi who died on Wednesday, July 6, was born in Ibadan, Oyo State, was first a TV presenter and newscaster before becoming an actress. She started her acting career in the drama series, ‘The village headmaster’ and also acted in other series and movies including ‘Checkmate’ and ‘Diamond ring’ which also starred her son. She has since been laid to rest according to Islamic rites.

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