Sidikat Odunkanwi, a veteran Nollywood actress, popular in the Yoruba-speaking section of the Nigerian movie industry, and fondly known as Iyabo Oko, died recently.
Sidikat’s daughter, Bisi Aisha, who is a soldier, confirmed her mother’s death in a social media post. In the post, the iconic thespian’s daughter wrote, “May your soul Rest In Peace mummy.” (sic)
It was gathered that before her death, the actress had a long battle with ill health, forcing her to take a break from acting.
Here are some things to know about the late septuagenarian:
• The late Nigerian movie star was born on 15 November 1960, in Iwo, Osun State. In 1973, she started her acting career as a teenager under the Eda Onileola Theatre Troupe before she later got popular for her role in the movie titled Oko; produced by Oga Bello.
• It was gathered that the late actress ran away from home during her secondary school days because she wanted to join a theatre group. After some time, her father took her away from Baba Eda’s house. This incident happened twice.
• Sadly, when she eventually became famous, her father died but her mother lived to witness her success as an actress in the Nigerian film industry.
• While working as an actress, she was able to complete her secondary school education. Iya Oko began her education at the Oke-Ola Primary School, Iwo, Osun State before she moved to Port Harcourt, her father’s military base. The actress later attended St. Andrew’s Secondary School.
• In 2015, she was diagnosed with an Ischemic stroke which made her take a break from the movie industry. Moreso, in 2022, her daughter announced she was dead but later confirmed that she was still alive.
• In 2016, she was honoured with the Special Recognition Award at the City People Entertainment Awards for her contribution to the growth of the Yoruba Movie Industry. Some of the movies she featured in include Oko, Ayitale, Idunnu Okan, Mayowa, Okobo, Dimeji, etc.
• Asides from being in front of the camera lens, the late actress was also a filmmaker and produced movies such as; Olufunke, Illu Ominira, Okegogo, and Ololufe, among others.
• Iyabo Oko was married to the talented actor, Tajudeen Akanmu fondly known as Koledowo. She was a mother of two children and a grandmother.