Tosin Ajirire, Entertainment Editor
To her numerous fans, she is Mama G, a cantankerous character in Nollywood movies. But in real life, she is Patience Ozokwor, the actress, singer, fashion designer and evangelist.
Love or hate her, Ozokwor is definitely one of the best actresses in Nigeria. Born in 1958 in Ngwo, Enugu State, she spent her early life in the village before relocating to Lagos where she attended Abimbola Gibson Memorial School and later Afikpo Teachers Training College.
Ozokwor then proceeded to Institute of Management and Technology (IMT), Enugu and became a teacher after graduation. After three years, she quit her teaching job and secured an employment in a broadcasting station where she cut her acting teeth, featuring in commercials and radio dramas.
Ozokwor’s acting career, however, received a boost when she played a cameo in Someone Cares, a soap opera aired on Nigerian Television Authority (NTA). And in 1999, she became a household name after featuring in the blockbuster movie, Living in Bondage.
Having married as a teenager, Ozokwor became a widow in 2000 when she lost her husband with whom she had three children. The veteran actress also adopted five other kids.
Aside being an actress, Mama G is also known for her humanitarian work. She established a school where she trains young girls in the art of hairdressing and skin therapy. However, her turning point came a few years ago when she played down full time acting and became an evangelist. According to the thespian, an angel appeared to her in the dream and told her to stop acting and start preaching the gospel.
But in spite of this, Ozokwor is still one of the most sought-after actresses in the industry. She has played the role of mother to virtually all the actors in Nollywood, perhaps, with the exception of veteran actors like Pete Edochie and Olu Jacobs. She also has several endorsement deals in the kitty and the most notable is being an ambassador of telecoms giant, Globacom.