‘Tis the eye of childhood
That fears a painted devil.
— MACBETH by William Shakespeare.

(Lady Macbeth told her husband who was over terrified by the gory sight of the slain Duncan who was laid in the pool of his own blood.)

Sincerely.., appearances of some people can make us tremble.., and truly, when it comes to the entertainment world of the Nollywood, the only actress that can make you melt down on appearance is our one-and-only IYA GBONKAN. She is the only one actress whose appearance on the TV screens can cause your heart to beat no further.


IYA GBONKAN came into the spotlight in the early 70s, her first set of acting career was recorded during the evergreen legendary IFA OLOKUN’s TV series by Pa Yemi Elebu’bon.

I still remember her role as ORO-MODI-MODI in one of the IFA OLOKUN’s weekly episodes titled ‘Oro Modi Modi’.

She acted a goddess that paid a courtesy visit to Orumila, the Ifa priest…, she had warned her host that on no condition must anyone take a lit lamp (Atupa) to look at her in the eyes. The priest warned his wife and listed all the dos and donts while she stays with them.

ORO-MODI-MODI was given one solitary room in the priest’s house and she always remained behind closed door inside her room. No one must see her face-to-face except the priest.

The priest’s wife only had to place her meals at the door, and ORO-MODI-MODI would sneakout quietly to take her meals without any eye seen her. She was going to stay for seven days with them, and she had it in mind to leave abundant wealth behind for her host.., that would be her pay-back for a generous hospitality she must have enjoyed while staying with them.

On the sixth day…, the priest’s wife was deep in avid thought, she became grossly worried and overzealously inquisitive.., she wanted to know who the hell that took the calabash bowl of food she always placed at the doorstep as commanded by her husband.

She defied her husband warning, took a man-like courage and forced the door open while holding a lit lamp in her left hand.

As the door creaked to open silently, the scary outburst by ORO-MODI-MODI alone was too thunderous, “Ha! O Se Yi Tan…” She screamed like a rattle snake.

Her thunderous echoes could abort and wash down a seven month old pregnancy as she struck the priest’s wife like an angry scorpion.
The sudden tumult of her wild screaming was like a volcano as she screamed loudly…., “Iwo Gbe’Nan W’Oju Ekun Lai S’Awo..,” She fired her.

As little children at that time, we would almost faint as if the woman was capable of cracking the thick walls of the screen of our TV set to attack us too like a dreadful vampire.

Margret “Mojoyinola” Dele Olayinka popularly called IYA GBONKAN is a talented actress with huge gifts of acting and creative abilities. Mere looking at her could knock you off your feet, even as an adult. She was a real Medusa we feared to see on the screens while we were younger. Her scary appearance would always reappear in our heads while on beds at nights after watching her movie.

IYA GBONKAN had featured in many evergreen movies of the times, and she had partaken in the many TV series. Her natural physique aided and befitted all her roles as a weird sister. With her look, she needed no further costume to act a gnome or to appear like a female demon.

In KOTO ORUN she acted OLORI-EMERE and in the same movie by late Alhaji Yekinni AJILEYE., KOLEDOWO, that lousy naughty, dubbed her ‘Iya Gbonkan’, and which was indeed most suitable name because of her sub-human structure and abnormal size, and ever since, people refer to her as that…, IYA GBONKAN.

IYA GBONKAN’s acting prowess can best be portrayed among her movie colleagues like Olori ABIOYE, OYIBOYI, OGUNJIMI AND Iya ABENI AGBON, these tv-cinema giants were capable of turning the broad daylight into a complete darkness.

Only ABIJA.., the god-sent Perseus.., who was capable of cutting down the wings of the weird queens of the night in the occult world through the tele-guided and omnipresent metaphysical power of AJAN. AJAN was like a Holy Ghost of the christendom…, he saw everything before it happened and like Nokia 3310 he would vibrate and pass information to ABIJAWARA whenever a trouble looms.

All Alhaji AJILEYE’s movies are known for their richness in revealing the secrets of the realm of the occult.

KOTO ORUN was one of such movies of horror that you will never want to miss again if you have the chance to watch it once more. KOTO AYE was released after the KOTO ORUN, all of them by the same AJILEYE, including ERAN IYA OSHOGBO wish was his last movie.

KOLEDOWO had eight children in KOTO ORUN movie and all of them were killed and roasted as suya by these angels of the darkness under the leadership of our own IYA GBONKAN.

Alhaji Yekinni AJILEYE died several years ago, his wife Olori ABIOYE had died years before him.

KOLEDOWO was not only known to be an actor but also a Fuji musician that was famous in Osogbo town and beyond before he died some years ago.

IYA GBONKAN is still hale and hearty. We wish her more years on earth. But funnily enough, IYA GBONKAN is just playing a role she knows how to do best in her chosen career, I can bet, she’s ain’t a witch in real life.., there’s nothing to fear about her, she’s but a Painted Devil.



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