Classics, Interviews

Actress Moyo Lawal narrates her mother’s last moment

‘What I will miss most about her’

On Saturday, May 11, 2013, death struck in the family of Mr. Tajudeen Olayiwola Lawal claiming his wife, Mrs. Simisola Modupe (Nee Kumolu Johnson), mother of Nollywood actress, Moyo Lawal. The ugly incident has since left the pretty thespian devastated.

However, the joy of the family was said to be unlimited on Saturday, May 4, 2013, as Mr. Lawal celebrated his retirement and 60th birthday at De Open Roof, LTV 8, Agidingbi, Ikeja, Lagos, amidst pomp and ceremony. Not knowing it would be thrown into serious mourning, exactly a week after the colourful celebration. But painfully, the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital Chief Nursing Officer succumbed into the cold hands of death. According to Moyo, she died of Cardio Vascular Arrest (CVA) at the family’s GRA Ikeja, Lagos residence. And she has since been buried.

ENCOMIUM Weekly had a chat with the beautiful role interpreter on Friday, May 17, 2013, on the demise of her lovely mother whom she described as an unsung heroine. She examined what she would miss most about her and much more.


We commiserate with you on the death of your mother?

Thank you.

How would you describe her death?

So painful, shocking and sad.

How would describe her in one sentence?

She was my unsung heroine.

What was her last moment like? Did she die in your hands or you just received the news of her death?

I came home to meet her collapsed. I found her with her elder brother, Chief Bode Kumolu Johnson, who she called but couldn’t meet. He later came and waited for me. He called his elder sister, Mrs. Akinbobola. We all entered her room together and found her dead.

What was the actual cause of her death?

She died of Cardid Vascular Arrest. Although, she had not been feeling fine for a while. She was very okay and full of life on Friday, prior to her death. I even cooked rice for her and we all gisted before we departed. Only to meet her dead the next day.

How old was she?

She was 52. My mother was born on July 20, 1960.

What was her job before death beckoned?

She was a chief nursing officer at Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Ikeja, Lagos. She even went to work on Friday, May 10, 2013.

Was she also at her husband’s retirement and 60th birthday party, held on Saturday, May 4, 2013?

Yes, she was there, full of life. Nobody expected that she would die the following week.

How many children did she have?

She had three children, all female. But she also had a stepson.

Are you the first born?


How does your dad handle the situation?

Of course, he is distraught.

How is life going to be without your mother?

It’s a different beginning entirely because we lived together. I can’t mourn her for one day or week. I can’t even mourn her for one month. It’s something that will gradually become a part of my life. But I believe, with God, it’s well with my soul.

What would you miss most about her?

The only person I could truly be free with, quarrel dangerously with was my mom. Now, she is gone. So, I will miss everything about her.

What will be the effect of her exit on your career?

Initially, I almost decided to stop acting because she never understood it. Instead, she wanted me to just settle down and get a proper job. But then, I saw clippings of me in her room. She was like my silent investor who sometimes understood that I had a career, not a job. I guess I will be giving my career all it takes now.

This story was first published in ENCOMIUM Weekly on Tuesday, May 21, 2013



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