Why my children won’t look for their father’s relations, friends -Gbenga Adeboye’s widow

Omolara Gbenga-Adeboye is the wife of the late comedian, Gbenga Adeboye. She speaks with ADELOWO OLADIPO on life after her husband’s death. Excerpts It’s 10 years since the death of your husband, Mr. Gbenga Adeboye. Can you tell us in specific terms those things you miss about him?
I miss everything about him; everything one can think of. And it’s been mixed feelings for me and the children in the past 10 years. Why have you not yet re-married and what are the challenges you have faced as a widow in today’s Nigerian society?
When it is God’s time, I will remarry even if I am 60 years old. In fact, my children have been asking me to remarry. When they initially raised the issue several years ago, I thought it was because they were still very young; (I thought) that maybe when they grew up, they would be mature enough not to bother me about that issue. But they are still reminding me about it. My own conviction is whether you are married or not, or whether you are a widow or you are single, the way other women have been coping with their challenges is the same way I have been coping. Everyone has challenges. And one of the challenges was when I needed to meet some of my responsibilities at home, especially as regards the needs of my children. But God has been the secret behind our survival.
How have you been able to combine the duties of being a mother with ensuring the upkeep of the family, without a man in your life?
Ever since I knew my husband, I had always maintained the house. My husband did not worry about so many things. The few things he cared for were his wife and children’s welfare. Of course, he loved writing his scripts. He also loved and enjoyed helping people and putting smiles on their faces, especially the sad ones. He did not know whether certain things needed to be changed/repaired or not. I had always been in charge of everything at the home front. So, by the time God called him, it was no longer strange to me, because I had always been the one doing it for him like renovating the house and making the house look good. There were times I held brushes and painted small portions of the house myself – even when I was pregnant. I did everything.
What has been the relationship between you and relations and friends of your late husband in the last 10 years?
We do not visit each other, and my children do not even remember them and they do not come looking for my children and me – unlike when my husband was alive. Well, I guess everybody is very busy. Ese giri giri n’ile Anjofe; Anjofe ku tan, a o r’enikan (People usually flock to the home of the free giver; but as long as he dies, they flee). Definitely, my children cannot look for them because I remember many years ago when one of the children mistakenly accused an artiste (name withheld) of stealing two of his father’s cars. When (the man) told me, I was shocked. I asked why he had to embarrass the man that way, he said the man was one of his father’s brothers who took away two of his cars. This is to let you know how bad the situation was. The little boy did not know his late father’s younger brother well, but he saw somebody who to him resembled his late father’s brother.
I scolded the boy (for accusing an innocent man wrongly) and told him to never say that again. I also apologised to (the man). These are children who were hurt by the death of their father and they could see that their father never really had a family (relations) as they grew up. No matter what, should any family say because they hate a wife, they should deny their own children?
Is it true that you and your children have been able to live comfortably because the royalty on your late husband’s works is being paid into your bank account? How true is this?
Who is giving us the royalty? It is a very big lie! Since the demise of my husband, I have not stepped into his office and I am not even here for that. And whoever has been collecting it does so at his own risk, because he will one day give an account of every kobo before God. Whatever they have taken without my consent, they will vomit one day in fact very soon!
What are your aspirations for your children?
My aspiration is to make sure that my children become successful and ensure they grow up in the way of the Lord and to be good ambassadors of their families and God as well as. In fact, they are ‘arrows in the hand of the Almighty. I know that in the nearest future, I will sit back comfortably and be treated as the mother of kings and queen. People will look back and commend me that I have really tried.
How often do you remember your husband and wish he was still around?
I remember him several times in a week and his children talk about him like a hundred times in a week. How can I ever forget him? Anytime I am in the house his presence is felt all around. His children are very fond of him and they are always saying that if their father was alive, he would have pampered them more.
Can you still remember how you met each other? Was it, as they say, love at first sight?
It was not loved at first sight; it was not even loved at the initial stage. I remember that one of my aunts, the former Secretary to the State Government in Lagos State, Princess Adenrele Adeniran-Ogunsanya, told me several years ago before I got married that she prayed that I should marry a man that I was not in love with at first sight; but a man that I would grow to love. She said that if you marry a man that you already love, you will not appreciate him; but if you marry a man you grow to love, you will know his good side and his bad side, and there is nothing he does that will disappoint or shock you. It was just as my aunt prayed when I met him (Adeboye). I even thought it was a joke when he came to me and said ‘I am your husband’. At that stage, I did not take him seriously until he insisted that I should go and pray over it.
Did you have any premonition of his death?
No; even when he was seriously ill and was at the point of death and asked me to write down the names of his debtors, I refused. I was very optimistic that he would survive. Later, I saw one of his sisters writing the names but I shouted and stopped her from writing, because that would simply mean one is admitting that he would die.
What lessons have you learnt so far from his death?
I have learnt so many things. But one thing I know is that there is God in heaven overlooking the affairs of men. If your hands and your heart are not clean, you will have a lot to worry about and contend with. However, no matter how rough and terrible the situation is or how many people are fighting you, you will always win as long as your hands are clean and your conscience is free. It does not matter how powerful, terrible or wicked your enemies are; as long as your heart is pure and your hands are clean, God will fight for you. Nobody is perfect, but if you qualify as a good person, you have a good heart, you do not have any skeleton in your cupboard, you do not have blood on your hands and you do not have any evil that you are doing to any human being at all, you will be vindicated, no matter the persecution.
What are your plans for the 10th anniversary of the death of your late husband.
I’m sorry I cannot tell you all my plans, but I will tell you one or two things. Let it be recorded that the major reason for this 10th anniversary is simply to glorify God, and glorify Him we must on that day. That day, we will also inaugurate The Gbenga Adeboye Foundation. This Foundation is to sustain his legacies and also serve as a platform to better the lots of talented but less-privileged children in our society. We will select children from primary and secondary schools and train them through to the higher institutions of learning; pay their school fees and help the ones among them that are talented to grow and encourage them in whatever ways they need to be encouraged. That is what God has put in my heart to do for the larger society. I am neither a presenter nor a comedian, but since we have my husband’s promoter on the board of trustee as well, the artistically inclined ones too will be taken care of. I pray that God will perfect His works.
Which of your children has been yearning to take after their late father by way of continuing where he stopped?
In fact, all of them are highly talented; but I encourage them to go to school because if I must say the truth, I do not like that line as such because of the things involved and I just want my children to face their education with more seriousness. Though I would not want to discourage them, at the same time I do not want to encourage them to take after their father’s profession. I am not too happy because I am not too comfortable with that kind of profession. However, I must not stop God from doing what He wants to do in the lives of the children, but I am more determined to give them sound education and pray that they are successful in their chosen careers.
Blogger Tips and TricksLatest Tips And TricksBlogger Tricks