At more than 70, veteran actress, Iyabo Ogunsola popularly known as Efunsetan Aniwura, is still going strong. Now an evangelist and gospel singer, Ogunsola in this interview reminisced about her career and concluded that she was spiritually attacked after the release of the film, Efunsetan Aniwura that brought her into the limelight.
The thespian also captured how her husband, Ishola Ogunsola aka Isho Pepper died, insisting that she would still act her usual role even though she is now a born again Christian. Enjoy it.
Madam Efunsetan Aniwura, where have you been and what have you been doing?
Thank you very much, though I am now Evangelist Iyabo Ogunsola popularly known then as Efunsetan Aniwura, Iyalode Ibadan.
When did you become an evangelist?
I have been going to bible school before the death of my husband, but I did not take evangelism serious until I had a spiritual attack.
How did it happen?
I was attacked spiritually after the play, Efunsetan Aniwura to the extent that I could not sleep day and night for six months despite my going from one hospital to the other. Even, I went to spiritual homes but I did not get healed until God showed me the story of Bartholomew, the blind who called the name of Jesus and got healed. I also called upon the name of Jesus and got healed.
So, you became born again after the attack?
No, I have been a Christian from birth because I came from a Christian family. I did go to church and also attended a Christian school. I have been a Christian all my life. Mind you, most of the things we did in school then were to turn some of the books being read like Olowolayemo, Won Rope Were Ni and others into plays, which we staged.
Did you have any supernatural power because you were very powerful in the plays?
No, I didn’t have any supernatural power; I was just acting.
What do you think was responsible for your being given a role of Efunsetan Aniwura?
Well, the play is about Ibadan, the Oyo State capital. I’m from Ibadan and I speak the dialect very well. This is side-by-side with my versatility as an actor.
What were the experiences either good or bad that you had after playing the role?
There was a day I went to the market and a woman met me on the road and called me a wicked woman, some even called me witch, series of names that I cannot remember. In fact, when I was attacked spiritually, I thought it must be the handiwork of those who thought I had diabolical power.
Your appearances in films were always wild; did you normally take any stimulant before going on stage?
No, I don’t drink any form of alcohol. Also, I don’t eat either kolanut or bitter kola. My acting is natural.
What is the difference between Iyabo Ogunsola and Efunsetan Aniwura?
Iyabo Ogunsola is a wife, mother, actress, very quiet and peace loving, while Efunsetan Aniwura is that wicked woman in the film, she is just a character in the play.
You’ve not been acting for some time, what is responsible?
It was when I came back from bible school that my colleagues stopped inviting me to location, and since I’m not hungry, I can’t be begging for roles. So, I use my talent for full evangelism now.
With your newfound faith, can you still act such ‘wicked’ character?
Why not, acting is different from my faith.
What are the challenges you have encountered since your husband’s death?
Not much because before his death, I have been in Christ, and He is the only person that is always consoling the widow.
Can you tell us how your husband died?
He became sick on a Sunday, he was rushed to Oluyoro Hospital (Ibadan) and by Monday morning, he could neither talk nor recognise anybody. He later died at UCH, Ibadan. Did he die a natural death? Well, it’s only God that can unravel the mystery, because he went to watch three different films on Saturday, he took ill on Sunday and died on Monday.