…Narrates how people started running when they saw him in Germany supermarket


By Christy Anyanwu

Emeka Ani is a veteran Nollywood actor that is reckoned with globally because of his special roles in movies. 

Nollywood lovers knew he was off the screen for a while because of ill health, while some others were wondering about his whereabouts.

He was recently sighted by Sunday Sun at O-jez, the celebrity hangout in the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos.

He was one of the invitees at an event put together by the Lagos State chapter of the Actors’ Guild of Nigeria. 


In this interview, he spoke about why he went off the scene and was not featuring in movies lately, his upcoming projects and lots more. Excerpt:

You have not been in movies for some years now, what happened? 

In December 2020, during my late sister’s burial, incidentally, I fell sick. It was a spiritual sickness because I was hale and hearty during the burial. At the end of the burial, I began to have a cold, fever and, after two days, a big boil appeared around my buttocks. People said it was a charm. When I called my doctor, he said I should come over to Owerri. I went to Owerri and, after seven days, he did a surgery on the boil, but after the surgery the sore refused to heal because I had diabetes. That was how it all started. For three solid years, I was suffering from this diabetic sore around my buttocks. From there, I had a partial stroke. During the partial stroke, I had eye problems; so many things came up and I was running helter-skelter, from one pole to the other, but Almighty God was on my side and that was how I got saved. So, many people came to my rescue, prayer-wise, financially and otherwise. Because of that, I went to Germany. I went to South Africa. I went to Cote d’Ivoire. I even went to Togo, just to find healing, to find a solution. 


Related News

By the special grace of God,  a woman of God in Ghana saw the thing on social media and called me on the phone. She introduced herself. She said she had one or two things to send, that if I could take them the sore would dry up. November last year, 2023, she sent me some medications and I began to take them. Within four months, the sore got healed. So, today, I am celebrating  my life. I am celebrating  everyone that contributed to my healing. I throw my greetings to those who said, Emeka, you will not die; that I must live. 

People like Jeremy Onototoye. In 2021, when he heard about this sickness, he called me. He asked, what have you done towards the healing process? I told him and ended that I wanted to travel abroad, but there was no financial assistance. He gave me N6 million. He said, add this cash to what you have for the trip. Another man of God, Evangelist Egbuka Obi of Zion Ministry, heard the same thing and called me  on the phone. I went to him; he contributed also and took me to the biggest hospital here in Lagos. He took charge of the operation on my eyes and he paid N3.8 million. So many people assisted me. I want to give special thanks to Yul Edochie, who encouraged me by doing an interview on me, a 30-second clip of what was happening to me. He posted it on his Instagram page and his friends and fans began to call and they donated money. That was how I raised finance that helped me in paying for my drugs,  hospital bills and the rest. Today, I am a happy man. I am back again. I am strong, by the grace of God. The Ghanaian woman did not charge me N1. The medicine she sent was worth N800,000 and she sent it twice. Within four months, the whole boil dried up. Diabetes is incurable, doctors say, but you can manage it. I am taking my medication. A good friend I met a month ago gave me  his product, Ruzu Herbal. 

Now, that you are hale and hearty, when are we seeing you in movies again? 

I just finished shooting a movie here in Lagos. The producer heard that I was in Lagos. They ran to me, saying, uncle, you are going to play a particular role for me. I was on set with Zulu Adigwe who died recently. We shot in Ijebu-Ode together. They had been shooting for two months, but they invited me for this special role. Everybody knows what I can do. Within seven days, I finished my own part with Zulu. I took him to the airport to go back to Abuja, but after one week, I heard he was no more.

Which of your movies brought fame to you? 

The one we did in 1995/1996, “Battle of Musanga.” That should be 28 years ago. I won’t forget that movie. Another one was in 2007, we shot one called “666.”  I got to Germany two weeks after the film was released. In Germany, when I went to visit a friend, he took me to a supermarket and as we entered the supermarket, people started running. What’s happening? And they said: “666” was playing in cinemas just last week in Germany, and they are now seeing you live. They think Satan has entered town.  These two movies, I love them so much

Was it acting you wanted to do growing up or you just  came into it? 

In 1989, when I started, I already had four children. I was almost an old man, but I love entertainment. When I came back from the North to Onitsha, the parish where I worshipped referred to me as Oliver de Coque. They said I looked like Oliver de Coque. So, I would pick up the microphone to sing. From there, I got inspired, making people happy; and any day I didn’t go to church, it was as if something was wrong, as if they were in mourning, but whenever I was in church  everybody was happy. From there, I got inspired,  entertained people and made people happy. It didn’t take me long to become a star because I knew God created me in a special way.

What were you doing  before acting? 

I was a full-time businessman in the North. From there, I came to the East. I used to deal in motor spare parts. Sometimes, I would buy a car, repair the car and sell it. But when this entertainment urge came, I went into the industry and God blessed me. I became popular. Money is not everything. I have not been able to make billions, but with the little that I have now, I am contented. Everywhere I go, people  recognise me and it has opened doors for me. Yes, there is no place I knock my hand that remains locked, the door must open. I have met a lot of people, I have met all the Nigerian presidents, one-on-one. I travel to Germany easily because I am a star, by the grace of God. I am a frequent traveller to European countries, by the grace of God. 

Are your children also into acting? 

My children are all grown, they are all married. They never showed interest when they were growing up. Each of them has his or her own talent. But anyone that wants to act, I will encourage them because I know it’s a good and  wonderful industry that can take you to any part of the world.

What is your advice to younger ones who want to become actors?

You must know what God has written for you. Everybody has his or her own talent. If you know your  talent is entertaining others, you are welcome. If you know the roles you can play, you put down a standing mirror, talk to yourself in the mirror, do a flashback of some good actors you admire. If you must be a good actor, you must go to school. An illiterate person cannot be a good actor. Be literate so that you will be able to interpret your roles, read your scripts and understand the meaning of the role in the movie you are shooting. If you do not go to school in this industry, you will only remain in “waka pass” roles.