A luminous epoch on theatre production ended somewhat suddenly on Thursday with the death of a prominent Nollywood actor and veteran of the theatre genre, Jimmy Aliu, popularly known in the theatre circles as Baba Aworo.
News of his death was broken by Yoruba actress, Foluke Daramola Salako on her Instagram page.
Read her: “We have lost another veteran again o Baba aworo is dead. We thank God that he was one of the old veterans we celebrated last year, but for covid we haven’t be able to do much this year, but we thank God when baba was alive we did our little quota, may God grant him eternal peace in Jesus name. A fe won sugbon oluwa fe won ju wa lo. Sun re o baba. Eerin won ajanaku koja mo rin nkan firi.”
Baba Aworo celebrated his 85th birthday in December 2019.
He might died from old age-related illness but the real cause of death had yet to be ascertained as of the time of this report.
But the Governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi, has mourned the theatre professional and prominent indigene of Ekiti state
Fayemi said the death of Chief Aliu was a huge loss to the state and Nigeria in general given his contributions to the development of performing arts and the state.
He described Chief Aliu as “a rare and extraordinary talent whose impact was felt in the entertainment industry locally and internationally.”
Fayemi said Chief Aliu’s worth had been recognised by the Ekiti State Government during his first tenure when the late theatre professional was honoured with the Ekiti State Merit Award, and by the Federal Government as a Member of the Order of the Federal Republic (MFR)
He further described the deceased as a multi-talented personality who functioned as an actor, dramatist, playwright, singer, film maker, producer, director, costumes and location manager and sculptor.
The Governor recalled that Chief Aliu produced blockbuster movies like “Iku Jare Eda,” “Arelu,” “Irinkerido,” “Yanpon Yanrin,” “Fopomoyo,” among others.
He noted that the late culture icon was a promoter of Ekiti brand and was proud of his state of origin in the course of his 61-year-long career on stage.
He said Chief Aliu had etched his name in the sands of time and immortalised himself in the hearts and consciousness of the global theatre audience.
The Governor commiserated with the family and associates of the deceased urging them to be consoled by the good life he lived.
“Baba lived an impactful life. He served our dear state, nation and humanity with the best of his creative talent.
“We shall miss him sorely but we are grateful to God for the legacies he left behind. May God grant the family the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss,” the Governor added.