“I have a cordial relationship with other comedians. I have a very cordial relationship with my fellow artistes. There is no rivalry between us.”
To most people, Moses Olaiya Adejumo popularly known as Baba Sala, was a comedian and nothing but a comedian. He’s a man expected to crack jokes all day long.
However, there is a clear distinction between Baba Sala and Moses Olaiya Adejumo. While Baba Sala was the famous comedian, the rib cracker who lived in a make-belief world, Moses Olaiya Adejumo was a perfect gentleman, a realist. He, like all human, had his foibles and frailties.
In his biography written by Tosin Ajirire and Wale Alabi and published in 1990, the legendary thespian, who passed away last Sunday in his hometown, Ilesa, Osun State at 81, unveils the man behind the comedy. Enjoy it.
Difference between Baba Sala and Moses Olaiya Adejumo
Baba Sala is a character, a stage creation. Moses Olaiya Adejumo is a gentleman, a perfect gentleman.
On his family
I have a fairly large family. I have eight wives and 28 children (as at 1990). I lost a wife in 1984.
The fact that one is popular does not mean he’s rich. I’m only popular. I’m not rich. I have three houses. I took N1 million loan from various banks for my first film, Orun Mooru. For this, I mortgaged five houses, my own three houses and two others belonging to my relatives. The film has been pirated, throwing me into debt. I’ve been able to pay N700,000 but now (1990), the accumulated interests have shot up to more than N1 million. I’m now back to square on. I’m in trouble. The bank is running after me. I hope, by God’s grace, to overcome these problems.
I have three houses. I have one in Lagos, one in Ibadan and the other one in my hometown, Ilesa. I also have two hotels, Alawada Standard Hotel, Ibadan and Ijoka Nite Club, Ilesa.
I’m a very religious person. I am a devoted member of Cherubim and Seraphim Church, Idasa, Ilesa, which I joined in 1955. I became an Apostle in 1967, a Senior Apostle in 1979 and Most Senior Apostle in 1984. I’m now the Baba Aladura of (Cherubim and Seraphim) Idasa Parish Headquarters 1.
On hotel business and religion
Being an hotelier doesn’t affect my religion. Hotel business is part of my entertainment career. I started the business before I was called to the vineyard of God.
His children’s interest in theatre/comedy
I do encourage my children to go into drama. And I’m happy some of them are into it.
Blasphemy. I hate people talking blasphemy. I hate people telling lies.
Relationship between Baba Sala and other comedians
I have a cordial relationship with other comedians. I have a very cordial relationship with my fellow artistes. There is no rivalry between us. I’m particularly happy with those following on my footsteps.
My favourite movie is Obe Gbona (Hot Stew).
I’m a typical Ijesa man when it comes to food. My favourite food is Iyan (pounded yam) and Egusi soup.
I like soft drinks.
I love Mercedes Benz and Range Rover.
I love traditional dress.
Attraction to women
I like them beautiful. I like well-dressed, pretty women, either black or fair complexioned.
My happiest moment is when I’m in the church. I forget all my problems when I’m in the church.
Music, swimming and reading the Bible.
Philosophy of life
Be merciful. Be good to people.
After settling my debt, I want to build churches all over the place and then retire as a church leader.
I don’t know if people come back here after death. But if they do, I want to come back (to this world) as a popular man and be useful to my nation.
I want to be remembered for all the good things I’ve done for this country. I want to be remembered for the joys I’ve brought to many homes, the souls I’ve lifted out of sorrows.
Culled from: BABA SALA! – The Authoritative Biography