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15 Nigerian celebrities who died in 2023

The Nigerian entertainment industry, known for its captivating Afrobeat music and the enthralling performances in its movies witnessed the death of several celebrities in 2023.

As 2023 bids us farewell, it is important to take a moment and pay homage to the Nigerian celebrities who left an indelible mark on the Nollywood and music industry but are no longer with us.

Unlike indigenous rapper, Oladips, who faked his death to promote his upcoming album, many actors, actresses, movie producers, film makers amongst other entertainers lost their lives in the cold hands of death.

Below are the 15 Nigerian celebrities that have died in 2023:

Ilerioluwa Aloba (Mohbad)

Renowned Nigerian singer, Ilerioluwa Oladimeji Aloba, popularly known as Mohbad, died on September 12, 2023, at the age of 27 mysteriously, with videos of the singer being bullied and assaulted resurfacing after his demise. He was known for his hit songs Feel Good, Peace, Ponmo, Beast and Peace, Sorry, Ko Por Ke, among others.

He was formerly signed to Naira Marley’s “Marlian Records” and left the label in 2022.

Also known as Imole, it was reported that he lost his life after an auxiliary nurse identified as Ms Feyisayo Ogedengbe administered some wrong injections to the rapper.

Dejumo Lewis

Dejumo Lewis was a Nigerian film and television actor, famous for the Kabiyesi role in The Village Headmaster, Nigeria’s longest-running television soap opera shown on NTA from 1968 to 1988.

He was born in 1943 in Ekiti, south western Nigeria. Dejumo had his primary education at the Holy Cross Primary School in Lagos Island.

He later did his secondary education at St.Gregory’s College, Lagos.

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Dejumo changed his mind and went to junior seminary to become a Priest at St Theresa’s Catholic Minor Seminary in Ibadan.

He eventually abandoned the priesthood idea and went for his Master’s degree at the University of Ibadan to study Communication Arts.

He was pronounced dead yesterday, December 23 by his junior colleague, Saheed Balogun, who took to his Instagram page. He died at the age of 80.

Peace Anyiam- Osigwe


Popular filmmaker, Peace Anyiam-Osigwe, died on Tuesday, January 10, in a hospital in Lagos State.

Anyiam-Osigwe, who was also the President of the Association of Movie Producers, founded the Africa Film Academy in 2005, with the award ceremony reputed I to be one of the most recognised awards for Africans in film-making. In 2020, she emerged as the National President of The Association of Movie Producers.

Anyiam-Osigwe was in a coma since 7 January 2023, and died at St. Nicholas Hospital in Lagos on 9 January, at the age of 53.

Femi Ogunrombi, aka Papa Ajasco

Femi Ogunrombi who played the role of Papa Ajasco in Wale Adenuga’s comedy series, died on January 14, 2023.

His character in the TV comedy series was known for his portly belly and hitting his head while saying “Ojigbigbigbi.”

Cindy Amadi

Nollywood actress, Cindy Amadi, who is known for her role in the lesbian-themed movie titled, “Ife”,  was among the Nigerian celebrities who died in September 2023. The producers of the movie, “Ife”, disclosed her demise in a statement on their Instagram page on Thursday, Sept 14.

The cause of her death, however, is yet to be announced to the public at this point in time.

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Oluyemi Adeyemi

Veteran Nollywood actor, Oluyemi Lawrence Adeyemi, popularly known as Suara, rose to fame with his role in the 2001 Wale Adenuga hit series, ‘Super Story.’

The family of the veteran actor in an official statement released utters that Suara died on Sunday September 25th 2023. They however do not disclosed the source of his death.

Suara, a name that stuck since his role in Super Story series, Oh Father! Oh Daughter! where he is a polygamist married to Buky Wright, and Sola Shobowale as his second wife.

Murphy Afolabi

Popular Yoruba actor and filmmaker, Murphy Afolabi, who was born on May 5, 1974, passed away on May 14, 2023, just a few days after celebrating his 49th birthday.

He was said to have fallen down in the bathroom at his house in Ikorodu, Lagos, that Sunday morning.

Murphy began acting at a young age. The actor shot to fame following his role in the movie ‘Omo Rapala.’

Afolabi’s death was also confirmed by film director and producer Tunde Old-Yusuf via Facebook. Murphy Afolabi is survived by his daughter Fathia Afolabi.

Adedigba Mukaila

Veteran actor Adedigba Mukaila, best known by his stage name ‘Alafin Oro’, died on May 13, 2023.

He is popularly known for his ‘herbalist’ and king roles in most ancient Yoruba movies.

Obinna Nwafor

Veteran actor and movie producer Obinna Nwafor, also known as Saint Obi, passed on at the age of 57 on May 7, 2023. The thespian passed on after battling with an undisclosed ailment. He was laid to rest on August 18, 2023, in his hometown, Alaenyi Ogwa, Imo State.

In 2001, he produced his first movie titled, ‘Take Me to Maama’. He also acted in many movies including, ‘State of Emergency’, ‘Sakobi’, ‘Goodbye Tomorrow’, ‘Festival of Fire’, and ‘Heart of Gold’.

Chikezie Uwazie

Nollywood actor Chikezie Uwazie who also died on Sunday, May 14, reportedly passed after undergoing brain surgery in the United States. His death was announced by colleague, Obey Etok, via her Instagram page.

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Chris Mba

Veteran pop singer, Chris Mba, died on Wednesday, May 3, 2023, after a long battle with heart issues.

The musician, who was famous in the 1980s for his jerry curl and hits like ‘Funky Situation’, ‘Baby Don’t Cry’, ‘Making My Way’ and ‘Love Everlasting’, died at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital.

Afeez Agoro

Popular Nollywood actor widely regarded as the tallest man in Nigeria, Afeez Agoro Oladimeji, passed away on June 15 after a prolonged illness, Acromegaly, commonly known as gigantism. Before his demise, Agoro was 7ft 4in tall.

The intimidating height of the deceased, who was featured in some movies, attracted stares wherever he went.

The 48-year-old actor was born in Sabo Yaba, Lagos State, as the last child of three children for his mother who was the second wife of his late father.

Ojo Arowosafe

Veteran Nollywood actor, Ojo Arowosafe, popularly known as Fadeyi Oloro, died on Tuesday, March 7, at the age of 66, after a protracted illness. Fadeyi Oloro is popularly known for his oratory skills in reciting Yoruba incantations. He rose to fame after acting the movie ‘Arelu’ in the late 80’s.

He also acted in movies like Inubibi, Anike Olufa and Akoni mefa among others.

Cynthia Okereke

Cynthia Okereke was an actress, known for Katakata (2021), Idemili (2014) and For the Love of Isiuwa (2021). She died on 11 July 2023 in Nigeria at age of 53 after a brief illness.

Okereke died almost one year after she was kidnapped alongside actor Clemson Cornel Nonyelu, popularly known as ‘Agbogidi’, while filming in Enugu, last year.

Sunday Akanbi Akinola

Veteran actor, Sunday Akanbi Akinola, who became popular for his role as “Mogaji “ in the series “Feyikogbon” which aired on NTA channel 7 in the southwestern Nigeria in the 1980’s, died on January 9, 2023 of kidney failure at the age of 80.


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