You may not agree with us, but we have come to admit and realize that nothing compares to true love. Nothing also could be as sweet as love. In the spirit of Valentine’s Day (which is celebrated all over the world on February 14 and in memory of Saint Valentine who was martyred for love), YES INTERNATIONAL! Magazine has lined up 50 exciting and exhilarating love stories that will not only blow your mind, but also make your day. It is a moving story on how some Nigerians you admire and adore found love. Some of the stories are conventional, some are not. However, one good thing that runs through all of them is that love sometimes could be found in the strangest of places. And that when nurtured and nourished, it leaves those savouring it happy forever…
AUSBETH AND ANULI AJAGU: What a mind-blowing love story that Dr. Ausbeth Nnamdi Ajagu and his delectable wife, Rev. Anuli, have. The astute businessman fell instantly in love, just seeing her beautiful face on a soap opera. And well aware of what he wanted, he told all those with him then that she is his wife! Some doubted, some believed. But not long after, he ran into her at a party, caused the DJ to suspend the music, collected the mic and announced to everybody’s consternation that he had found his wife. Now, guess what? That was what eventually happened. They got married about 17 years ago, and are now blessed with three children – Oscar, Ausbeth Jnr. and Venessa. The beautiful thing about them is that as a couple, they’ve been scandal-free and a role model to many.
ISAAC AND NNEKA MOSES: The Goge Africa presenters. Nneka and Isaac have a sweet love story. In Love in Vendetta, a movie they both took part in, in 1996, they undertook the roles of husband and wife. And having executed it with so much ease and also ascertaining that they could become one just like they did in the movie, they decided to do it in real life, after a one year courtship.
Always together, the Anambra indigenes who the Almighty God many months back blessed with their first child – after over ten years of marriage – surely have an interesting and at the same time intriguing story. Their wedding was on October 25, 1997 at the Catholic Church of Assumption, Falomo, Ikoyi, Lagos.
KAYODE AND SEUN OLAGUNJU: Kayode is hunky and handsome. And because of that, perhaps, he’s always had his way with women. Encountering Seun, however, while on a visit to Daar Communications, changed that perception of women completely. She made him to understand that all women are not cheap. Neither do they all come easy. Anyway, after trying and trying, Seun decided to have mercy and today, the NTA staffer proudly addresses herself as Mrs. Olagunju. Now a mother of four, her husband, a first class graduate of Geography, is one of the top shots at the Federal Road Safety Commission and their relationship has been waxing stronger and stronger. Their courtship was for a year, and their wedding took place on April 29, 1999.
RICHARD AND JUMOBI DAMIJO: They met in the line of duty. Africa Independent Television, the media outfit where she used to work was having an event, which RMD was invited to. And because both of them couldn’t take their eyes off each other, they knew the only reason for that must be love. Married since 1999, and blessed with two children (Tega and Mena), the husband now functions as the Commissioner for Culture, Delta State and the wife, a staff of Glo. Both dimple-faced, RMD is from Aladja, Delta State and JMD a Lagos babe.
PAUL AND CHIBUZO OBAZELE: Theirs is a very, very funny story. He had gone to a bank which she used to head to cash a cheque. But unknown to him, the cheque was not yet due for payment. And when the cashier pointed this out to him, he insisted on seeing the manager, after having already created a scene in the banking hall.
Now face to face with the lady, all his ‘yarns’ couldn’t move her as she stood her ground, reiterating what he had earlier been told. However, because of the level of maturity and calmness she exhibited in passing her message across, Paul, after taking his leave, decided on a repeat visit and from there a romance that ultimately culminated into marriage began. The Edo born movie and television star is an Ishan (in Edo State) while his banker wife is Igbo. They have four children and worship at Revival Assembly.
CHARLES AND DIANE OPUTA: The weird duo. Charly Boy and Lady Di, like they are widely known, met in America. CB had gone to a salon (Dany) where Diane used to work to have a treat and immediately he set eyes on the black American, his system was completely disorganized. To break down her defense, he lied to her that he would invite her to his birthday party.
True to his promise, and with the co-operation of Diane’s boss, he sent a Limousine to bring her to the party venue – which turned out to be his house. Mesmerized and dazzled, Lady Di had no choice than to cave in. They eventually formalized their union in a registry in Owerri, Imo State and have been having a blast ever since. Blessed with four children, Diane was born in South Carolina, USA and CB, Oguta, Imo State. She studied Men’s Tailoring while he read Mass Communication. Jointly, they also sing and engage in other things.
TUNDE AND WUNMI OBE: The scandal-free celebrity couple. Tunde and Wunmi Obe, or TWO, like they enjoy being addressed, were born into affluence. The former’s father was an ambassador and the latter, the founder of The Punch Newspapers.
Hopelessly in love with each other and forever combining colours, Wunmi, from Oyo State and a Philosophy graduate of the University of Lagos, had been invited to replace a female singer who just called it quits with a group called The Turning Point.
Tunde, already a member of the group, spotted her instantly. They became friends, then lovers and finally, husband and wife. In their 40s, their marriage was consummated amidst pomp and as you read this, the enviable union is blessed with three children – Roxanne, Richardo and Charles.
SONI AND BETTY IRABOR: For as long as this media couple lives, they will always remember the Elegant Stallion, Onyeka Onwenu. And this is why: Betty, then a greenhorn, had attended her first ever assignment in July 1982 – Onyeka’s debut album launch, where incidentally both them met. And a relationship was ignited, followed by marriage. An English and Philosophy graduate of the University of Lagos, Betty, 54, currently publishes Genevieve. Blessed with two children (Sonia and Omoruyi), her better half, Soni, is a veteran broadcaster, but engages more in media consultancy now. Their marriage is over 30 years old.
JIM AND PATRICIA NWOBODO: He is a renowned politician while she is a finance expert. Their romance began in 1984. She had gone for her Industrial Training at Nwobodo’s Satellite Newspapers, and before the expiration of that, they had become inseparable. As a matter of fact, the Umuahia, Abia born lady even abandoned her Law studies at UNN at some point just to be close to the former Governor of Anambra State and Minister of Sports who was clamped into detention then by Buhari.
Married since Saturday, January 22, 1994 and blessed with a set of twins, the no-nonsense Mrs. Nwobodo is a licensed stockbroker and CEO of Price Securities. She is also a lawyer.
DAYO AND CAROLINE ADENEYE: D-One, like we all know him, had tried marriage before, but it didn’t work out. And while still grieving and undecided about which woman to pitch his tent with next, his father, a well to do man, asked him to see him. He went and the man told him that he had found a wife for him. The new wife, Caroline, used to be the man’s tenant. After some feeble hesitation, Dayo, one of Nigeria’s sexiest men alive, heeded the man’s advice, and today he’s happier for that. Married for over a decade now and blessed with four children, they regularly make the list of Nigeria’s most admirable and stylish couples. D-One made his name at Daar Communications, before setting up Prime Time with his buddy, Kenny Ogungbe. The wife is into events and calls the shots at Sierra Concepts.
GODWIN AND VICTORIA OKRI: Let’s voice out the truth. The Lord works in a mysterious way. When actress Victoria Inyama (now Okri) left Nigeria in 2003 for the annual AfroHollywood Awards, it was simply to collect her diadem, do some shopping and rush back home. But as fate would have it, while the event was still going on, the Lord swung into action, pointed her in the direction of Godwin, a UK-based attorney and brother to the famous writer, Ben Okri, and that was it. The union was solemnized at Apostle Anselm Madubuko’s Revival Assembly Church not long after and right now has two offsprings.
Vicky is an actress, made her name in the days of Ripples, hails from Arochukwu, Abia State and read Creative Arts at UNILAG.
MATTHEW AND OMOTOLA EKEINDE: The pilot and the actress met at Solid Rock Assembly Church, Iyana-Ipaja, Lagos, where they used to worship. Captain Ekeinde’s sister played the role of a facilitator and also quickened the steps of the union.
Blessed with four children – Matthew, Jnr, Princess, Merriah and Michael – they got wedded at the Ikeja Registry on March 23, 1996. And not long after, had another superlative wedding inside an aircraft.
Born on February 7, 1978, Omotola, a multiple award winning actress, also sings. She read Estate Management at Yaba College of Technology, Lagos. Her hubby used to work for Arik Air.
JOHN AND SHOLA MOMOH: They own and run Channels Television. Both of them also started out as broadcasters. As a matter of fact, their paths crossed at NTA (Nigeria Television Authority) where they used to work. Born on July 1, 1957, John Olachy Momoh, a 1990 Mass Communication graduate of University of Lagos and his pretty wife have three children.
EYIMOFE AND DOROTHY ATAKE: The hugely stylish couple. Eyimofe, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria and arguably Nigeria’s most stylish man, had visited Ashland Oil (now Addax Oil) to see a friend when he met her. They dated for two years before making their romance official. The doting parents of Eyitoritse, Tinuofe, Oritseloju and Amatoritse (a set of twins) both come from privileged backgrounds, but have not allowed that to water down their love for each other. She is 48 and he is 54.
TAYO AND TUTU AYENI: Tayo Ayeni, MD/CEO of Skymit Motors, enjoys catching them young-and his gorgeous wife, Tutu, is an example. He met and fell in love with the lawyer while she was still 17 years old. Blessed with two boys and two girls, the woman who is now 52 runs Space Properties and Space Graphics.
WOLE AND LARA OLANIPEKUN: Chief Wole Olanipekun is an immensely successful lawyer as well as a Senior Advocate of Nigeria. Born on November 18, 1951, he met his wife, Lara, in 1979 and on October 25, 1980 they walked down the aisle. The mother of three (all lawyers) was going somewhere in Kwara State when he offered her a lift. One thing led to another and the rest, like they say, is now history.
ATUNYOTA AND MARY AKPOBOME: Ace comedian, Ali Baba, met his wife, Mary in 1996 while she was still working with the defunct Citizens Bank. They became lovers and even had a baby (Brandy) in 1998, before parting ways. They rekindled their romance again after Ali’s first marriage failed and have since then been indivisible.
KEN AND TINA OLUMESE: Ken Calebs Olumese, Lord have mercy, is the Guv’nor of Niteshift Coliseum. His wife, Tina, is a senior nurse with Eko Hospital. Blessed with five children, he travelled home to see his mother who was not feeling fine, but was so awestruck by the kind of attention she was getting from the nurse attending to her that he ended up marrying her. From Ekpoma in Edo State, the godfather of nightclubbing hasn’t regretted that decision.
LANRE AND MODUPE OGUNLESI: The ‘Sofisticat’ couple. They met as far back as 1973 in UNILAG and got married on January 30, 1976. Blessed with three children and two grandchildren, their love has remained steadfast and sure-footed. Immeasurably stylish Lanre is the outgoing type, but the wife, owner of Adam and Eve, is the opposite.
SONNY AND SUSAN IROCHE: Born in Lagos in 1959, Sonny, from Umuahia, Abia State, read Zoology at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He taught at NDA, worked with IBM, CMB and even served as a Special Adviser to Abia Governor on Economic Affairs. His wife, one time MD of First Inland Bank, surrendered her heart to him while both of them were staffers of IMB – and it’s been good and great since they did that.
ROTIMI AND JUDITH AMAECHI: Rivers State governor, Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi, found love in Judith, the mother of his three children (Chikampa, Obinna and Lemchi) while still a Personal Assistant to Dr. Peter Odili. This was in 1992/93. However, convincing her to give him her heart was not easy. She first gave him a fake address to discharge him. But after they met again in an estate he was living then, she knew there was no need any more to lie to the lawyer and former Speaker of Rivers House of Assembly. They eventually got married on November 27, 1993.
OLISA AND LILIAN AGBAKOBA: One time president, Civil Liberties Organization and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Agbakoba, from Onitsha, Anambra State, was born in Jos, Plateau State in 1953. A friend, Ngozi Nwokolo, introduced his wife to him at the Enugu campus of UNN and they wedded in 1971. Staunch Catholics and good parents, they have three daughters – Amaka, Dumebi and Kiki.
KOLA AND SHERIFAT DAISI: The chairman of the defunct Fountain Trust Bank and Lagos Chamber of Commerce, he attended the famous London School of Economics and Political Science and graduated in 1959. The successful father and grandfather met his wife at a wedding ceremony in England and they got married on July 23, 1960.
TONY AND QUEEN OKOROJI: He was 18 and she was 16. He had just left high school, but she was still struggling with hers. They began a courtship that lasted for seven years before finally getting married on November 19, 1983. The former PMAN president and major brain behind COSON, they have six children and can’t thank the Almighty God enough.
FRED AND FOLAKE AGBAJE: Both lawyers, the romance that ultimately saw them becoming husband and wife commenced at the University of Benin where Folake did not only take part in a beauty contest but also won. The outspoken constitutional lawyer has two children, Oluseyi and Mojere.
BODE AND REMI OLAJUMOKE: Bode is a politico while Remi is a princess. The eldest daughter of late Oba Adeyinka Oyekan and erstwhile senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria met at the University of Edinburgh. This was at the post graduate faculty. Her unassuming personality and sheer simplicity, despite her royal background, attracted Bode who today has five children to brandish for that singular decision which he took instantly.
PATRICK AND VIVIAN OBAHIAGBON: The Igodo Migodo of Edo politics and popular grammarian. They met 19 years ago at the Ministry of Education, Iyaro, Benin City, where she went to check her sister’s Common Entrance Exam result. The lawyer and former member, House of Representatives had just got back from London then. Today, they have two kids and are not complaining.
KUNLE AND YINKA ADEDAYO: The TFC couple. Born in 1948, the Ila Orangun, Osun State businessman is a friend to Yomi Ogunlusi, the wife’s brother. And it was during one of his visits to their house that he met and wooed her. They courted for two years before getting married in 1976. Blessed with a son, Bunmi, who is now late, the owners of the monstrously popular Tastee Fried Chicken are having a blast, a rave and a groove.
PAT AND IFEOMA UTOMI: The academic and social critic. Utomi, from Ibusa, Delta State, met his wife at the College of Medicine, Lagos University Teaching Hospital, in Idi Araba. He had accompanied a friend, Tony Nnachetam, to the place to see his own girlfriend – and along the line, started a relationship with Ifeoma, the roommate, and that was it.
PHILLIP AND JUMOKE ASIODU: Elder statesman and former Permanent Secretary, Chief Philip Asiodu, grew up with his wife on the same street in Yaba, Lagos – Herbert Macaulay. Both families lived there and knew each other and that was what did the magic. The economist and former presidential aspirant, now 78, has both children and grandchildren. He hails from Asaba, Delta State.
EDDIE AND SUSAN IROH: Eddie is the author of Without A Silverspoon as well as the erstwhile Director General, Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria. Polished and refined, he met his wife in Abuja. This was at the Maitama District of the FCT. Susan was in need of accommodation then and had showed interest in Eddie’s boy’s quarters. Not long after offering her the place, love took over. He calls her External Flame and she calls him My Heart.
FREDRICK AND MARIAM FASHEUN: OPC founder and radical medical doctor. “You are a pretty girl and I will like to go out with you”. That was all he said to the nurse he had met then at the University Teaching Hospital, Zaria, Kaduna State. After convincing her, they courted for one year and today they have five boys and one girl.
EMMANUEL AND ROLI UDUAGHAN: The governor and first lady of Delta State. They ignited the fire of their romance at Aladja Steel Company where both of them used to work. And now have two children – Toju and Orode.Plus some grand children.
PETER AND MARY ODILI: He trained as a medical doctor and she trained as a lawyer. Odili, former governor of Rivers State, was reading in the classroom, awaiting the arrival of his lecturer, when she walked in with her friends. Mesmerized beyond words, he immediately got up and asked her out. She consented and thus began a whirlwind romance which culminated into marriage on August 26, 1977. They have four children today to show for it.
IBIKUNLE AND FUNSO AMOSUN: Ogun first family. They have five children and got married 20 years ago. Funso, born on May 2, 1966, met her husband while doing her NYSC. The daughter of late Bishop Ayoade Odesanya who read English Education and Guidance and Counseling for her first and second degrees was posted to where the governor and former senator used to work to enlighten them on some things about ICT, and thus began a union that is still standing till today. The governor is a Muslim and 46.
DONALD AND ONARI DUKE: Donald 50, was contesting for the position of Director of Socials at the University of Maidugri when they met. Their courtship spanned six years (80-86), before they settled down. The former first family in Cross River State ranks among Nigeria’s most sumptuous. The names of their children are Nella, Dona and Erona. He is from Cross River while she is from Rivers State.
MOHAMMED AND SADAATU ADOKE: Attorney General of the Federation and Attorney General of Taraba State respectively. They both read Law at Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria, Kaduna State, were course mates, friends, lovers and later husband and wife. He proposed four good times before she accepted. They got married in 1991 and currently have four children.
JITE AND MINA OKOLOKO: He runs Notore Chemicals while she runs Beauty Concerns. They have two children (Orklay and Mine), met in 1993 at the latter’s house and got married in 1996. Jite read Economics while his wife read Law. He was involved with Oando before Notore.
ADEBAYO AND KEMI AKALA: The former governor and first lady of Oyo State. Their paths crossed in 1983 at the Police College in Ikeja, Lagos where she did her NYSC. Her husband now was a police officer then and little by little, they kept nurturing the romance till it got to where it is today.
KUNLE AND DESOLA BAKARE: The media couple. Now married for almost two decades, both of them had gone job hunting at the defunct Prime People and as fate would have it, they were the only people taken and that was it. Today, they have two children- Mofe and Gbeke- and also work together at Encomium magazine.
JULIUS AND IBIERE AGWU: Julius, a renowned comedian, had been contracted to compere an event in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. And IB was also there. He fell in love instantly, but had to contend for the now mother of two’s (Zahra ana Zadok) heart with a friend who was also interested. They ‘ve been married now for 8 years.
NB: First published March 2012
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