One of the high points of Babatunde Omidina aka Baba Suwe’s burial on Thursday was the emergence of a young man who claimed to be his son and first child.
Speaking to journalists during his father’s burial in Ikorodu, Lagos, the young man, Akanni Sherif Omidina, said :”My story is peculiar because my father is there and my mother knows him and I am busy looking for my father, going to places “.
“My siblings might see it as a shock, for 40 years they have never known me, and me coming now will look strange to them, ‘where did this one come from?”.
Mr Sherif, who identified himself as a medical doctor, said he has travelled to China, Korea and UK but is based in Ghana with his family.
Expressing his pain, Mr Sherif said he never knew that the man he watched on television was his father.
He said while in school, he only knew Baba Suwe as a comedian, little did he know that the man whose comedy he enjoyed watching was his father.
” I only watched him on TV, but never knew he’s my father. I knew him since I was small, I was attending victory grammar school then when I used to watch his comedy. I only knew him as a comedian and I love his movies and always wanted to watch his comedies and no other.
” My mother used to tell him to take his comedy away, not knowing that she knew what was involved, but I didn’t know, I just loved him.”
Sherif’s mother, Muibat Adenike, also opened up on her relationship with the late actor at the occasion.
She said she met the late veteran actor in 1979.
Ms Adenike, who used to be an actress, said she was the first to act as ‘Iya Suwe’, but her acting career was cut short by her parents’ disapproval.
She said they bore a son, Sheriff, while they were together.
Mr Sherif also said he is ready to go for a DNA test to prove that Baba Suwe is his father.
In his words, “I am not concocting this story; I am comfortable, I can even push it further to any form of DNA test, because I’m always ready. I know who I am, I am not looking for anything, I am comfortable. If you come see me in Ghana, you will know I am okay.”
ALSO READ: PHOTOS: Baba Suwe buried in Lagos
According to Mr Sherif, he met his father before he went abroad to further his studies and visited him several times before his death.
When I went abroad, I heard of his fame a little bit. I didn’t have the chance to watch his movies as I wanted to because of work – doctor.
When asked if he saw his dad before his death, he said: “Yes, I saw him, I traveled home like three to four times before the incident occurred. I am just thankful because I yielded to the nudging of my spirit and came home and bought him a set of chairs. What I did made me at ease and I was just happy. Now that we came to bury him, I am happy it is not after his death I am getting to know him. I knew him before his death”.
Mr Sheriff, who described himself as Baba Suwe’s first born, added: ” I have a lot of burdens but I cannot do it alone. I urge uncles and aunties in the family to support and avoid situations where it will be in the pages of the media that this is how the family he left behind is. We need to use love to make everything right.
Speaking about his acceptance into the family, Mr Sherif said it might be difficult for his siblings to fully accept him, since they didn’t grow up together.
“It’s not easy but the reality is that we are carrying the same blood and I know that blood is thicker than water, and no matter how much we fight, it will still come back that we are blood.”
He also pleaded that all the family needs now is understanding amongst themselves, so they can sustain their father’s legacy.
Mr Sherif said he was part of the family and bears a striking resemblance with Shola, a son of the late veteran.
” They said I look like them, some people said I look like them, some people called me Shola, I’m not Shola, I am his elder brother, maybe it’s the resemblance.”
Mr Sherif, who said he feels happy that he is a son of the late veteran, also noted that he still loves and appreciates his father, despite growing up without him.
Baba Suwe died at age 63 and was buried on November 25, three days after his demise.
Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility
Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.
For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
TEXT AD: To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401...