Udokwu, has been married to Cassandra, an educationist, for 16 years.
They share their love story with JAYNE AUGOYE.
crossed at the University of Lagos. I was an undergraduate while he was
studying for a master’s degree. He was a regular caller at my hostel
because his classmate, whom I used to refer to as his girlfriend,
resided there. However, anytime I saw him around, I always greeted him.
case of storybook love at first sight. I was struck by her height and
the fact that she walked like a model. I had to ask her if she was one. I
was already a movie star when our paths crossed.
did. We ran into each other on several occasions and then one day, he
saw me walking towards UNILAG gate and gave me a lift to Alaba, where I
resided with my sister.
didn’t ask me out on that day. We met yet again at the same spot and
offered me a ride home. We got talking and became friends.
single and searching. I was more interested in getting another degree.
However, somewhere at the back of my mind, I was open to finding love or
going into a relationship.
surprise visit at my sister’s church. After the service, he asked if he
could take me somewhere. It turned out to be his brother’s place and
his family welcomed me in a warm manner.
on the same day he took me to his brother’s house. He told me that he
asked God for certain qualities in a woman and he had found them in me.
He then asked me to be the mother of his children and I cried. He was
shocked at my reaction but unknown to him, I cried because my parents
had just passed on. I asked for some time to think about it and consult
do with my instincts especially as I had realised that it was time I
took our relationship to the next level. It didn’t take time for me to
make up my mind. From our small talks, her mannerisms and of course
through prayers, I knew in no time that she was the right woman for me.
traditional marriage remains a very significant event in my life. Having
lost four members of my family in a day to poisoning, I thought I
wasn’t going to get married. Then my husband came, along and we wedded
in less than one year. I thought my family would be stigmatised but God
had better plans for me. Another memorable moment was when I had my
first daughter. I wanted my husband to be by my side and God granted my
wish. When my husband came inside the theatre, our daughter was
delivered into his arms.
married to a spouse who is not always around or a celebrity is not easy.
However, our foundation has been made easy for both of us. Being an
educationist has afforded me ample time for our children, my husband and
absolutely no problem with my female fans. Some people ask me how I cope
with female fans and I tell them that ‘cope’ is a wrong word. When you
cope with something it means you struggle that particular thing. I have
no problem with my female fans. As an actor, my fan base comprises
females and children. Without my female fans and children, I won’t be
the star that I am.
years, I have handled my husband’s female fans in a civil and mature
manner. I always tell him that he is lucky to have female fans.
marriage. How do you keep the romance in your marriage alive since you
both live in different countries?
about understanding, when partners are made for each other there are
certain sacrifices they both have to make in their marriage. We talk to
each other not less than twice in a day even when I travel abroad.
Sometimes, a text message can suffice. Whenever I am not recording, when
I wake up in the morning, I talk to my family and review the day’s
activity. We also catch up during the day and when I am home, I try to
make up for not being around by bonding with my family.
support him wherever his job takes him to. Distance is not an issue as
he calls me more than six times a day and I also pay him regular visits.
our bit as parents but I think my wife is stricter since she spends more
time with the kids. I don’t believe in spanking especially as the kids
are growing. Sometimes, a good talk does the job
temperamental but Bob has made me a more patient and calmer person. We
trash out any misunderstanding as it occurs and never go to bed angry.
and we answer each other’s phone calls when the need arises. Women tend
to develop a lot of anxiety as a result of going through their spouse’s
phone. It is totally uncalled for so couples must learn to trust each
and it is not an issue for us. Moreover, I think the foundation of a
marriage matters a lot. My wife and I listen in to some radio programmes
and hear people making a mountain out of a molehill over trivial issues
like owning a joint account. I, for instance, taught my wife how to
drive and she drives like man and also helped her open her bank account.
Owning a joint account is not proof of love. My wife knows when I am
down financially because I tell her.
film I shoot or project I am involved in that I don’t tell her how much
I’m being paid or offered. That is why I can confidently give her my
ATM card and ask her to withdraw a certain amount without nursing any
reservations. I am only able to do this because I trust my wife.
myself with dignity, self-respect and professionalism. As my career
progressed, I learnt from the experiences of others, which may be
unfortunate. I also had to determine not to go down that route. So, I
deliberately walk away from situations that will bring out certain
such roles, I’m very conscious. When I have to play steamy scenes, I
discuss it with the director and we work it out in how the screenwriter
wants it portrayed without being obnoxious. I also remove my wedding
band whenever I am about to go to bed.
simple because I don’t want to have that mark which comes about as a
result of wearing a wedding ring especially when I have to play certain
roles. It makes me uncomfortable sometimes when I have to play the role
of a bachelor and the ring has left an impression on my ring finger. It
kills the picture I am trying to create. I also feel uncomfortable
having any jewellery on when I am supposed to be resting.
I would ask her to tone down the way she criticises me when I am
getting out of shape. But I don’t think I would love her to stop
critiquing me because it keeps me in check. Anytime I gain weight, my
wife would tease me and ask if I want to play ‘old peoples roles.’ My
wife is one of the reasons why I have remained on top of my game as an