The death of 42 year old star actress Moji Olaiya in Canada in the early hours of Thursday, May 18, 2017, shook Nollywood and its sympathisers as the tragic news filtered to Nigeria.
Speculations and misinformation reigned for days as conflicting reports seeped in.
But with the formation of a burial committee and chats with members of her family, clearer pictures on her last days and funeral plans emerged.
Here are 13 unforgettable developments as compiled by encomium.ng:
1. News of the death of the mother of two daughters filtered in early that Thursday morning of May 18.
She was said to be in good shape, having spoken to some family members days before her demise.
She developed complications, and died as she was being ferried to the hospital. Cardiac arrest was named following childbirth complications.
Moji Olaiya had already bought her flight ticket (for June 20) for her return trip to Nigeria before death came.
2. Nollywood colleagues assembled at her Magodo residence (in Kosofe area of Lagos) as they condoled her aged mother and 18 year old daughter (Adunola Faroumbi, a year three Law student of Babcock University in Illisan, near Ijebu Ode in Ogun state).
3. Her burial was initially slated for Canada as cost of ferrying her home was put at $15,000 (N5.7 million).
Her daughter protested, but was persuaded to allow the Canada burial.
4. A burial committee was inaugurated with Fathia Balogun as chairperson, Foluke Daramola Salako (secretary), Yomi Fabiyi (publicity secretary), along with Femi Olaiya and Yinka Farinde (a Canada based promoter) as members.
5. Friends and Nollywood colleagues agreed at a levy of N100,000 per person to explore ferrying the corpse to Nigeria, but less than six people paid.
6. Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti state was reached through his Special Assistant on Publicity and New Media (Lere Olayinka). But the processes to get the state’s assistance was aborted as a request letter to the government was never written nor forwarded.
7. On Friday, May 19, at around 11 am, the 88 year old father of the deceased, Sir Victor Olaiya (legendary highlife king), was informed. Bayode and Yejide Olaiya told their father the sad news.
8. Members of Theatre Arts and Movie Practitioners Association of Nigeria reached out to Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu on Saturday, May 20, and he told them to come on Monday, May 22. Yinka Quadri led the delegation that Saturday.
9. In the night of Saturday, May 20, Femi Olaiya, her London based sibling, arrived Canada.
He was to supervise the paper work and plan the next steps.
At this time, it was unclear whether she would be buried in Canada or Nigeria.
10. On Monday, May 22, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu fulfilled his promise, and donated $30,000.
Two members of the Olaiya family, Adunola Faroumbi (her daughter), Foluke Daramola Salako, Yomi Fabiyi and Kemi Afolabi were received by the pillar of democracy and national leader of All Progressives Congress.
11. News from Canada revealed that the two month old baby is in good health. And preparations to get Moji Olaiya’s remains ready for burial proceeded apace.
Autopsy, which took about four days, was completed. And death certificate issued.
The remains was moved to a funeral home ready to be freighted to Nigeria.
12. News that the humble, respectful and quiet thespian was poisoned gained ground. And it was quickly dismissed by the burial committee.
13. The family decided on a Lagos burial for the Ekiti born filmmaker. Ebony Vaults (owned by Deinde Harrison) in Ikoyi has been chosen.
And we now all await the arrival of her remains…