MOVIE director, Dickson Iroegbu, is not in the best of moods at the moment. The mother of his three children and wife of many years ran away from his house with his kids. Lamenting his ordeal to ENCOMIUM Weekly, he alleged that Efe abandoned him because of his involvement in President Goodluck Jonathan’s campaign. “I have lost my family. I was in Abuja, working for Mr. President, when I got a call that my wife had disappeared with my three children. I came home, cried and cried and concluded that my wife cannot take my good luck away from me,” he claimed.
Iroegbu also said that his wife has not been supportive of him despite the fact that she is from the same geo-political zone with Jonathan. He went on to sound it clear that his family cannot stop him from serving his fatherland. In fact, he told us clearly that no sacrifice is too much for Nigeria. “We have to serve our fatherland. And that is what I am doing at the detriment of my family and personal pleasure. And I will give it all it takes,” the Nollywood director told ENCOMIUM Weekly in a recent phone chat.
Asked if there is still room for reconciliation, he said it was theirs to decide since they are adults, who know what is good for them. But it appears the man is omitting a plot in the well-scripted drama of his wife’s ‘disappearance’. He has not said anything about the lady that ignited the fire of discord in his household. And that is Victoria, popularly called Vickie, the pretty model he met about two years ago. He attended AMMA 2010 with her. They were also together at Ernest Obi’s wedding at about the same time. Vickie only stepped aside temporarily late last year when there was too much pressure from Efe. Iroegbu had to confide in a friend that his lover was too young to handle what was going on then.
Contrary to Dickson’s claims, he had long abandoned home (as ENCOMIUM Weekly earlier reported) before the Jonathan campaign issue cropped up. In fact, he was not even part of the Nollywood group campaigning for Jonathan from the outset. It would equally be recalled that he almost fought Emeka Enyiocha whom he then accused of being partisan. Iroegbu was also against Nollywood artists’ direct involvement in politics in a forum of movie makers held at the National Theatre, Iganmu, Lagos back then.
He would later form his own platform to support Jonathan’s political aspiration through his Goodluck Transform Nigeria Ambassadors (GTNA). Which is a socio-political organisation that works for the President. Other than endorsing Jonathan, the group also supports him with research and statistics to boost his chances at the April polls. A later development that may not have any direct relationship with his marital crisis he had once reported to a local church.
This is why those aware of when he joined Jonathan’s campaign train are wondering why he is linking it with his family problem that had been on months before Jonathan even declared he was running for president.
A staff of National Film and Video Censors Board, Efe, Dickson’s estranged wife, met the multiple-award winning movie director in the line of duty. She was part of the Censors Board team for Iroegbu’s movie, The Carpenter. It was from there they started a steamy relationship that later led to marriage. The couple had been living happily before the crack in their marriage. From what we gathered, it was when the movie industry started witnessing a down-turn that things started falling apart for the Iroegbus. He even had to abandon his enviable Child Soldier movie project because of paucity of funds to actualise it. Iroegbu’s involvement in Onyeka Onwenu’s epic movie, Omenuko, didn’t also end well.
Coupled with the excitement of the new woman in his life, who needed all the time to cement their affair, Dickson Iroegbu’s critics say he should leave President Goodluck alone and bear his burden with candour, courage and equanimity.
A graduate of Business Administration, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, he cut his teeth in movie production as a production assistant with Amaco. He won the African Movie Academy Award Best Director in 2006 with Women’s Cot. Credited with scores of flicks, some of his well-known works are Trinity, The Mayor, Kill the Bride, amongst others.
- This story was first published in ENCOMIUM Weekly on Tuesday, March 8, 2011