Monday, 10 September 2018

'I Was Framed Up In A Drug Case' - Baba Suwe Reveals

Veteran Yoruba actor, Babatunde Omidina popularly known as Baba Suwe recently spoke about his ordeal with NDLEA, career, his late wife (Moladun) and some other issues. Recall he was arrested at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) few years ago.

Below is the interview with the veteran actor;

How did you come with the name, Baba Suwe?
I was inspired by Baba Mero and other actors who added the prefix, Baba, to their names. I had a girlfriend then called Suwe; so, I decided to give myself the name, Baba Suwe, and it was well received by my fans.

It's been a while you've appeared in movies. Do you still get scripts?
It just happened that way but no condition is permanent. Very soon, you will start seeing me in movies. You know when one is I'll, one would need to rest properly. However, whether I go out, people still show me so much love. To those people, it's like they see me every day in movies.

I recently went to Osogbo and the crowd that greeted me was overwhelming. And that's the same thing that happens everywhere I go.

Did your detention by the NDLEA contribute to your illness?
Yes, it did. I believe I was framed up in that particular case. That wasn't my first time of traveling out of the country and I had never been arrested for something like that. They took me to a lot of big hospitals and laboratories but nothing was found in me. The judge who handled the case later told the NDLEA that if they did not retrieve any illegal substance from me, they should let me go.

On the day I was arraigned in court, the crowd that came to witness it was so massive; you would have thought they came to see a movie. At a point, I couldn't bear it anymore and I shed tears. I was made to sleep on a bench in an office at the airport throughout the time I as in NDLEA's custody. I usually ate three times in a day and I excreted more than 30 times while I was there; yet they couldn't find anything. I was even taken to a place where they flushed my insides with water and they still came up with nothing.

But it was reported that you refused to eat regularly while you were in NDLEA custody?
That's not true; I always ate three times every day.

A Lagos High Court ordered the NDLEA to pay you the sum of N25m as compensation. Have you received the payment?
I have never gotten a kobo from them. The case has practically been forgotten after my lawyer, Bamidele Aturu, died.Aturu was determined to see the case to a conclusion. When he first took on the case, he called me aside and asked me to confess to him if I really committed the crime. But I affirmed my innocence to him and he believed me. The people close to me knew that I was innocent. I had never seen cocaine until I got to NDLEA office. My job as an actor was enough to take of all my needs, and I didn't need anything else. Through my job as an actor, I have been blessed by God snd I am well loved and respected.

But the NDLEA insists that its scanners detected the illegal substance in you. Some people even said a juju priest must have assisted you, which is why you did not excrete the drug. Is that what happened?

Of there was a juju priest that could do that, I'm sure the person would be a millionaire by now. What could I have used that made them not to find anything in me; after all, they apprehend people every tume. I have always stuck to what I know how to do best.

Did the NDLEA apologize to you in any way after your ordeal?
I never saw them after I left their custody.

Have you considered making a movie of your NDLEA experience?
Yes, it will be out soon. The title will be, Oya'gbe to.

What was your experience when your wife, Omoladun, died?
It really affected me. She was planning to travel at the time, and we were even supposed to go for her passport on the day she died. I told one of our children to wake her up so we could prepare for the journey. But the child ran outside, saying that she was foaming at the mouth. I was do confused and scared, and I started shouting for neighbors to come to my aid. There's nobody that can be happy in such circumstance. We lived together and she took care of me. We even used to act together; so you can imagine the kind of bond we had. It was really painful to me.

What do you miss most about Omoladun?
I miss a lot of things about her. We could stay at home all day talking about different things. We usually discussed about things we wanted  to do years before we did them, we planned our lives ahead. There was nothing I did that she didn't know about.  When I built a house, I also constructed a shop for her.

You said you were going to get married again. Why haven't you done that?
One has to be patient before taking such a step. Once I find a woman that would love me and take care of me and my kids, I will get married again. She also has to have a good character and be submissive.

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