Popular Nollywood actress, Toyin Abraham, has cautioned against snide remarks about successful women in Nollywood.
She made this statement in response to rapper Ruggedman’s claims that women in Nollywood seem more successful than their male counterparts.
The famous rapper had, a few days ago, tweeted that he has jettisoned his plans to join Nollywood because male actors in the industry are not living luxurious lives like their female counterparts.
He wrote, “My male actors in Nollywood what’s going on? It’s only the females that are buying cars and building houses left and right. I wanted to come into Nollywood but at this rate, I am not coming again.”
Ms Abraham expressed her displeasure at the implication of the rapper’s post. She said his comment had given way to people on social media to put up derogatory remarks about women, especially actresses.
She also mentioned that a lot of men in the industry get paid just as much as women but most of them have chosen to keep their successes private and not make noise on social media.
“It is important that I put this out there that many women make money and make good money legitimately. I know actresses who charge N2m, N3m, and N5m in this Nollywood. I get paid in millions of Naira for gigs. As a matter of fact, I just paid for a very good car worth millions of Naira and at the same time, I know a lot of men in Nollywood who are doing extraordinarily well and paid in millions. The fact that most of these men choose not to make noise on social media does not in any way mean that they are second class citizens in this industry.
“We need to stop attributing every woman’s success to her sexual prowess with men, women deserve the success they have as much as men without attributing it to their sexuality. Even scriptwriters that are not in the limelight are getting paid millions. It is disparaging to put the successes of these women within the box of their sexuality. A lot of women are doing great things legitimately. I am one of them and so also are many other women in other industries, not just the entertainment industry,” she said.
A Nigerian journalist, Kemi Yesufu, also berated Ruggedman whom she described as “a washed-up musician”, for disregarding the feats that have been achieved by women in the film industry and igniting a negative debate about actresses and women in general.
“A glance at the top-grossing movies in the last three to five years will show how female producers are leading in Nollywood. But as usual, a washed-up musician overlooks the positive contribution of women and has ignited a debate to further demonise actresses and women, by extension.
“You can’t even talk about the success of Nollywood without speaking of how female faces sold some of the biggest movies and have now gone behind the camera to create blockbusters. But a failed, broke and dumb musician is instigating people against actresses with his stupid post and those who can’t think will join the nonsense talk for innocent women in a country where sex is a currency frequently demanded from women,” she wrote.
Other actors in the industry like Bukunmi Oluwashina, Yvonne Jegede, Junior Pope, and others have also weighed in on the matter and aired their own opinions.
Oluwashina said most people making money in the industry are very private and sent prayers up for women that work hard to make money and still have to explain how they got it.
“Obviously the people making the real money are not even making noise. May God help every woman out there who is diligently working hard for their own money in a dignified way and still passed through the stress of always explaining themselves. Lass lass, everybody go dey alright,” she said.
On her part, actress Yvonne Jegede pointed out that there are female actors that have been in the industry for years and are still struggling to make ends meet.
Actor, Junior Pope, who joined the conversation, said the male actors have more responsibilities and more dependents than the ladies in Nollywood.
The debate of whether Nollywood actresses are living beyond their means has been a long time coming and might not end soon especially as Nigerian gossip blogs have made it their mission to expose their alleged dirty secrets online.
However, the likes of Funke Akindele-Bello, Jade Osiberu, Mo Abudu, and others, continue to work hard and have proven that women in Nollywood can make their money legitimately.
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