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‘I’ll never do anything to jeopardise my marriage’—Nollywood actress Mercy Aigbe

News » Entertainment

Image: Mercy Aigbe

May.04, 2013


In recent times, happenstances with Mercy Aigbe have generated a buzz in the Yoruba language wing of Nollywood. The actress who has just cleared the air on allegation of infidelity by a popular blogger says she has not been so alarmed in her entire life like the rumour did t her. In this interview with MERCY MICHAEL, the amiable actress opened up on her marriage life, passion for acting and her personal style. WHAT is style to you? Style to me is a personal thing. It’s a way of expressing myself especially in the way I dress. I always say one thing; look the way you want to be addressed. Style is a way of expressing yourself. And to me, it comes naturally. I have this thing about me, when I put this and that together, it turns out good and people will always compliment me for it. Style is about comfort; you have to be comfortable with what you are wearing. When you’ve passed a certain age, there are certain kind of clothes you shouldn’t be wearing.

For a celebrity, it’s strange to know that you can talk freely about aging?

Why not? But I think everyone should age gracefully, slide into it, age beautifully. For me, I’m not scared of aging, but with age, you should know what is appropriate for you. There are some clothes you should wear when you get to a certain age, and there are some you shouldn’t wear at a certain age.

What is the secret of your good looks?

(Laughs) I hear this all the time; ‘Mercy, you don’t look your age. You look way younger than your age.’ And a lot of people, when they get to meet my daughter, they are surprised, and they say ‘are you sure she’s your daughter? But then, I just smile. And my head ‘grows big’ for getting those compliments. However, for my beauty regime, I believe I’ve been blessed.

Is it a genetic thing?

I would say yes, because my mother doesn’t look her age. I even have a grandmother who is 99-year-old and who still doesn’t look so aged. Aside the fact that my look is genetic, I believe it’s also a blessing. God has blessed me and I also take care of myself. I do facial treatments – I exfoliate – I just pamper myself. I love myself and I feel since I work very hard, I should also take care of myself.

Talking about work, a colleague of yours said to me that you are one actress who is hard-working; she said this happens even when you were pregnant…

Fact is, I love my job with a passion. My job makes me very happy. When I am in front of the camera, I come alive. I’m happy when I’m working. Sometimes when I’m home for like two weeks and I’m not back on location, I don’t feel comfortable. It’s just something that I derive so much joy from. Besides, I like to make my own money. There is this pride that comes with making your own money. Fine, my husband is okay financially, but when I spend money that I earn, I feel different. I like it when I buy things for my kids with my money, and not having their daddy doing it all the time. Some people may want to call it pride, it’s not pride. But there is this satisfaction that comes with you making your own money.

Does that includes working even when you are eight months pregnant?

I think I stopped working in the seventh month of my pregnancy. I was seven months and I was forced to stop working, I must tell you. My husband had to call my mother, saying:” I don’t know what your daughter is looking for? If anything should happen to my child, I will hold her responsible.” So I had to stop. But truth is I enjoyed working while I was pregnant because my tummy wasn’t all that big. I was really fine when I was pregnant, I must tell you. I actually played several moovie roles, hiding my baby bum under some clothing so I went on and on and on, until my husband stopped me.

You recently had a faceoff with a popular blogger who alleged that you were seeing another man. How did you feel about this and what have you done to redeem your image?

I have done a lot. I even did a video and people were surprised, asking why I had to go as far as doing a video just to clear the air. But I tell you something, we are in such a society that you need to take the truth and put on a plate for people to see and believe. And I’m a married woman; I have in-laws to answer to. I’ve got kids. I’ve got a grown-up daughter who has friends in school, who are going to ask her questions regarding the issue. So I’m always very careful. I’m a mother and I wouldn’t want anything to affect my kids. A lot of people write shit about me, sorry to use that word. A lot of people write things about you and you just let it go, but the way she painted her story, you’d think it was real and that she was there and that it happened for real. When I first read it, I was like I’m going to let it pass. It’s one of those things; it comes with the job and all that. But when I saw that the story went viral, and everybody started calling me; I was getting tweeted by most of my fans, who were asking me questions, I had to react. I actually wanted to sue her but people said I should leave her because that’s the nature of the reporter. It was then that I got to know that she’s not even in Nigeria. And I thought that even if someone had sold the story to her, she should have, at least called me to hear my own side of the story.

Be honest, did you have any issues with your husband after the incidence?

I never had any issues with my husband. There is no way I could have any issues with my husband. I never had any issues with my husband before the incidence and after then, I never had any issues with my husband. Although, my husband was shocked at the way the person cooked up the story and he was really touched. But again, he saw it has the price to pay for marrying an actress.

You said a lot of your fans wanted to know what happened. How did that make you feel?

The incident actually made me know that I was loved. A lot of people called me and they were like, don’t mind her, just go ahead with your work and your family. I was touched. I got a particular call that moved me to tears because the woman was so emotional and passionate with the way she was talking. She said: “Mercy, you shouldn’t have done the video. You don’t have to explain to anybody. What is her business? I’m a married woman, so I understand. Why would you do that when you are not mad? She went ahead to say, “When I read the story, I knew it just didn’t add up. You are a celeb, even if you have mental problem, there was no way you could have done that”. I can actually say now that the story came as a blessing in disguise. A lot of people out of compassion encouraged me.

Is that the worst thing that has been written about you?

Yes, it is. And I don’t know where that story came from.

You said recently that you wished your second marriage was actually your first. Can you shed more light on this?

Yes because I am married to a very wonderful person and I’ve always been this kind of girl that believes that it’s how you want your life to be that your life will be. I didn’t know that there is something called fate. I didn’t know that fate can actually twist…. at the end of the day, it twisted it for good, but it’s always a regret because that is not how you actually wanted it. I would have just loved to marry my present husband and have my kids but it’s okay.

As an actress, you have continued to be relevant. What’s your staying power?

Like I’ve been saying, I love my job with a passion. When you love what you’re doing, you will always want to get better and better at it. You will always want to do research to make you improve in what you are doing. I love my job and I also have a very understanding man. It takes you to have a very understanding man for you to do this job as a married woman. I have a wonderful man who supports me under any circumstances because he knows I love my job. I think my passion and my love for the job has been my staying power.

There is the notion actresses don’t keep homes. What’s your take and how have you managed to keep yours?

The thing is that, marital problems are not peculiar to entertainment Industry. It’s everywhere. Marriages these days are not like those days. A lot of things that our mothers and our fathers took; we women and men of these days will not take. So, it’s not synonymous to we entertainers but what I have done, this is my second shot at it and I’ve taken it to God. I believe that marriage is a union ordained by God and I’ve decided to take my marriage to God so that He can actually help me. I think He’s the only one who can give me the wisdom to manage my home because the Bible says a wise woman builds her home. And that wisdom actually comes from God. It’s not easy. It’s not easy. It takes a lot of patient and prayer. I’ve made prayer the foundation of my marriage. So I’ve just taken everything to God and in my own little way, I’m trying to be the best woman my husband can ever wish for.

We live in a society where money speaks volume. How do you cope with the money bags coming your way?

Fine, I have a lot of male admirers. I love the fact that they love and admire what I do as an actress, but I always know where to draw the line, because I would never do anything to jeopardize my marriage, my home, and happiness of my children. No amount of money can buy my children’s happiness. I don’t know how much you want to give me that would buy my children’s happiness. My children’s happiness comes first. And they are happy when they are with us; their parents. And I’m a very contented person. I’m very contented with whatever I have. I’m not greedy. When you are contented, no matter what anybody dangles at you, it’s not gonna sway you, because you are contented with what you have.

We’ve seen you on English Soaps, when are you going to do an English movie?

(Laughs) everybody is always like, Mercy why are you not doing English movies, and I have always said, I don’t know. Maybe it’s not yet time. It’s not that I don’t get called up by English producers, but most of the time, I was always on location shooting. Maybe when they give me a date, I’m already occupied and all that. I just believe that probably it’s not yet time because I actually started with the English genre before I moved into the Yoruba. I really don’t see myself as a Yoruba actress, I see myself as a Nollywood actress. It’s just the medium that is different. I can easily go in and out. I’m a professional. I actually studied Theatre Arts at the University.

You are an entrepreneur, you run your husband’s business, you produce and you act. How do you joggle all that?

It’s not easy to marry these very important roles together. It’s a lot of hard work, sometimes I ask myself if I can go on because I have to spend time with my husband; I have to spend time with my children. I have a lounge; I run my husband’s hotel but somehow I’m just able to do these things. But it still boils down to the fact that I have a very loving and understanding man. You see when you have an understanding man it makes the job easier.

What about the times you spend weeks on end on location, is it your husband that takes care of the children?

Weeks on end? (Laughs). I have my domestic staff who take care of my kids. My son is a big boy now. He’s going to be three years. I have my mother. I’m always taking them to my grandmother. In fact, she loves to have them around her. So I have my family members around, and they help.

After you had your last child, how long did it take you to go back on set?

I think when my son was two or three months. I was so bored at home. But I got myself busy by going to the gym but I couldn’t wait to get back on location.

What’s the craziest thing a fan has done to you?

I remember an occasion a guy came up to me and I was with my husband, and he asked me to sign autograph on his chest. I was so embarrassed.

But did you do it?

No, I didn’t. I just kept laughing and laughing, I just couldn’t do it.

How do you unwind?

I love watching movies and taking my kids out.

What was the last movie you watched?

What’s that movie called? I can’t remember. When I’m home I just watch movies with my kids.

Among several roles that youhave played which would you say is so dear to your heart?

I think it’s my movie Osas. You ask me why? That movie allowed me to actually speak my Benin Language and speak pidgin language. I love to speak pidgin language. It also allowed me to speak Yoruba language. So, it allowed me to speak the three languages I love so much. And Osas was the major comedy character I played. I never knew I could be funny. Yes, I did Papa Ajasco’s wife before then, and that was where I actually got inspired to do my movie.

When it comes to acting, do you have any limitations?

Yes I do, I can never act nude. And it doesn’t even come with the job. You chose to.

How would you describe Mercy Aigbe?

I’m a very nice person; at the risk of blowing my trumpet. I’m very humble. I’m very playful. A lot of people know that about me. And I’m very hard-working. And, let’s just say I don’t take nonsense.


Article Credit: The nation Newspaper

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