Bukky Ajayi Biography and Life History

Zainab Bukky Ajayi is a fallen hero and a legendary Nollywood actress, television personality and a philanthropist. She was born on 2nd February 1934 in Surulere, Lagos State in the western part of Nigeria and died on 6th July 2016 at her residence in Surulere, Lagos State in the western part of Nigeria at the age of 82 years old.

Bukky Ajayi completed both her primary and secondary school education in Surulere, Lagos State in the western part of Nigeria and obtained both her First School Leaving Certificate and West African Senior School Certificate.

After completing her primary and secondary school education in Surulere, Lagos State, Nigeria, Bukky Ajayi proceeded to England in United Kingdom on a federal government scholarship to complete her tertiary education.

In 1965, Bukky Ajayi left England, United Kingdom for Nigeria where her career began as a presenter and newscaster for the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) in 1966. She started acting in 1970 and made her first film debut in the television series “Village Headmaster” produced by Nigerian Television Authority (NTA).

After that she went ahead to feature in Amaka Igwe’s film “Checkmate” a Nigeria television series that aired during the late 1980s to the early 1990s until the Nigerian movie industry (Nollywood) was given birth to. Bukky Ajayi is one of the pioneers of the Nigerian movie industry (Nollywood) and contributed immensely for the growth of Nollywood in Nigeria and rest of the world.

During her acting career, Bukky Ajayi has featured in several television soap opera and Nollywood movies which include Critical Assignment, Diamond Ring, Witches, Hotel Majestic, Mother of George, A Brighter Sun, Big Heart Treasure, Fine Things, Keep My Will, Women of Faith, Bridge-Stone, Destiny’s Challenge, Women’s Cot, Village Headmaster, Checkmate, Witches, Hostage, Indecent Girl, Worst Marriage, The King Make, My Best Friend, etc.

In 2016, her contributions to the Nigerian movie industry (Nollywood) were recognized after she and Sadiq Daba were awarded the Industry Merit Award at the 2016 Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards. Bukky Ajayi is married with three lovely children namely Olakunle Fawole, Alfred Oluwole Shoga, Claude Akinwande Peter Thomas. She also has several grandchildren.

Bukky Ajayi is one of the most gifted, most skillful, most creative and most talented actresses in Nigeria. She knows how to interpret her roles very well and can fit in any character given to her by movie directors. Bukky Ajayi acts in both English and Yoruba speaking movies. She is referred to as the mother of Nollywood due to her contribution to the growth of the industry.

Unfortunately, on 6th July 2016, Bukky Ajayi died at her residence in Surulere, Lagos State in the western part of Nigeria at the age of 82 years old. It was gather that she died a peaceful death caused by old age.

Bukky Ajayi was one of the richest and most influential actress in Nigeria before her death with an estimated net worth of $350,000.


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Austine Ikeru
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