‘The night will surely turn into day, no matter how dark it seems.’
The true-life story of comedy actor Charles Inojie was beautifully portrayed by this statement.
To this day, the actor wears his days of adversity as a badge of honor, believing that the difficult period not only taught him a lot about life but also made him a better professional.
Inojie traveled down memory lane in a recent live discussion with Vanguard on Instagram, reminiscing how he battled to overcome life’s hardships and tribulations to get to where he is now.
According to him, he lived in poverty as a roommate while in university.
The actor also recalls the values his grandmother imbibed him that helped to shape his future. Describing his university days as a nightmare, Inojie who studied Theatre Arts at the University of Port-Harcourt, recalled how he was unable to pay his tuition fees at a time because of financial constraints.
“When I gained admission at UNIPORT, my first-semester school fee was N720.00 and I managed to pay the fees. Later, the school fee was increased to N1,200. I also struggled to pay the new fee. But when it was further increased to N2000 per session, I couldn’t afford to pay it. I was owing my school fees until I graduated from the university.
It was after my graduation that I went back to clear my school fees,” the actor narrated. The actor, who also grew up under the tutelage of his grandmother, recalls the values the old woman inculcated in him. “There were many things my grandmother told me while I was growing up. It was my grandmother who told me that I would never be a failure in life if I didn’t deviate from the path she had cut for me. “Wherever I go today, her words of wisdom always ring in my ears.
My grandmother would always tell me that anywhere I found myself, I should remember the son of who I am. “She would say, ‘No matter what everybody else is doing around you if you jump the bandwagon and the consequence of that action would negate your Christian upbringing, negate the moral that I have taught you if saw that it is something that I, your grandmother would not be proud of if you see that it’s something that would ultimately bring shame to this home, no matter the enticement, don’t do it.’
“And that has kept me going. You can’t entice me with anything. I defeated poverty from the outset. By defeating poverty, there is no kind of carrot that you are going to dangle before me that will make me do things against my conscience.
“As a university roommate, I experienced poverty. Mr Poverty will be the first person you greet when you get up in the morning. As a result, poverty is someone I am extremely familiar with. Nothing can affect me now that I’ve survived those days of extreme poverty. Those are the values instilled in me by my grandma that money cannot purchase.
“It makes me sad that she didn’t live long enough to reap the benefits of the seeds she sowed so many years ago,” Inojie said.
The Edo State-born actor feels he has given humor a positive image in the country through his film roles, adding that if he hadn’t been brilliant at what he was doing, he wouldn’t be where he is now.