Even though most Nigerians know Mr. Ibu only for his comic performances in movies, the Nollywood comic actor is a family man. Mr. Ibu’s family comprises his wife Stella Maris Okafor who he has been married to for 12 years. The duo have four kids together.
What’s more, Mr. Ibu has been married twice and Stella Maris is his second wife. He revealed that he went through rough times in his marital life before he finally married his second and current wife in 2010. Here is everything you should know about the comic actor’s family life, what happened to his first marriage, and all the children he has.
Who is Mr. Ibu’s Wife?
John Okafor is married to Stella Maris who he often refers to as his “Queen”, “First Lady”, “First Class”, or “Chibest”. Asides from the fact that Mr. Ibu’s wife is a native of Mbaise in Imo State, there is no other information about her early life and family background. However, she is known to be growing a career in acting and modeling.
Mr. Ibu and his wife Stella got married on the 25th of May 2010 in a traditional wedding ceremony at the bride’s hometown in Imo State. Five years later, in 2015, they held their white wedding ceremony. They have now been together for 12 years and their marriage, according to the actor, has been bliss.
To celebrate their 11th wedding anniversary in 2021, Mr. Ibu took to social media and posted various family photos. He went on to describe his wife as a direct gift from God.
How Mr. Ibu Met His Wife
The comic actor revealed that he met his wife Stella in a very heartbreaking condition, and that was shortly after his first marriage ended. According to him, Stella was crying at the moment he saw her, and he inquired to know what was wrong. She told him that her lover had just broken up with her and went on to show him the breakup text message on her phone.
Mr. Ibu did well to console her and assured her that she is very beautiful and valuable and that there are many men who would love to be with such an amazing woman like her. Right there, they exchanged contacts and become friends. Subsequently, they were opportune to cross paths again on a number of occasions and their friendship grew into a serious relationship.
According to the comedian, things went quite well between them and he decided to take the bold step by proposing to her newly found love, which she accepted, and the rest they say is history.
Mr. Ibu Described His First Marriage as a Disaster
Mr. Ibu married his first wife in 1998 but the marriage crashed after about seven years. There is no information about who his first wife is and what she does for a living. The only available detail about the woman is that she hails from the same town as Mr. Ibu and the actor said that he married her because his mother and sisters insisted that he marry from their hometown.
The actor cum producer seizes every opportunity he has to explain how bad his experience was with his ex-wife to the extent of describing the marriage as a “disaster”. Also, due to the hard times he went through in his first marriage, he had to keep away from women for 6 years after the marriage ended. Yet, Mr. Ibu did not reveal to the public what was the actual reason for their split nor the circumstances of his suffering in the marriage. Rather, he simply said that they were not compatible.
The Truths Behind the Kidnap Saga of Mr. Ibu’s Wife and Son
On 4th January 2011, Mr. Ibu’s wife and their one-year-old son were kidnapped. The actor revealed in an interview that his entire family members were initially taken. The kidnappers however released others and withheld only his wife and one-year-old son when they learned that the Police Force was on their tail.
At first, the kidnappers required a ransom of N50 million but after four days of persistent haggling and pleas, they dropped the price to N6 million. Mr. Ibu furthered the negotiation and finally paid a ransom of N4 million, and his wife alongside his son was released after ten days of being in their custody.
Meanwhile, John Okafor revealed that during a discussion he had with one of the kidnappers, he realized that his ex-wife had a hand in the whole saga. Sadly, his one-year-old kidnapped son died a year after the incident, and his death was associated with food poisoning.
What Happened to Mr. Ibu?
In February 2022, Mr. Ibu became ill as a result of food poisoning and was admitted to Zenith Medical and Kidney Centre in Abuja. His wife Stella Maris took to her Instagram page with a short video of herself beside her husband and urged Nigerians to pray for him. Speaking with Saturday Beats from his hospital bed, Ibu said that he was poisoned a week before in Abuja at an entertainment event.
Meanwhile, this is the second time the life of the actor has been threatened through the same poisoning. He revealed that he was poisoned in 2020 at an event he attended in Nnewi, Anambra State. This was also when he noted that his protruding stomach was a result of food poisoning.
While some began soliciting money on his behalf without his consent, others went on with rumors and speculations of his death. However, Mr. Ibu was able to disclose while in the hospital that his condition was not as critical as people are widely speculating and urged them to stop using his name to exploit money from celebrities because he had never begged anyone for such. He further added that he would let people know if he wants to die since they seem to be so interested in his death.
What is Mr. Ibu’s Health Condition Now?
Mr. Ibu has fully recovered and was discharged from the hospital on the 25th of March 2022. In an interview he granted, he expressed his thankfulness to God because at a point he almost gave up but God came through and raised him up. According to Ibu, he is eating very well and is prepared to go back to set anytime from now.
Mr. Ibu Has a Total of Twelve Children From His Two Marriages
According to records, the Nigerian comic actor has a total of twelve (12) children. They would have been thirteen but one is late. John Okafor said that he fathered most of the children before he got married to his second wife Stella. Apart from the information that he has a grown-up son who is married, nothing is known about the children and the ones he had with his first wife.
His Second Marriage Produced Four Children
Mr. Ibu and his current wife have four children together but as we have earlier mentioned, one is late. This means he currently has three children with her; a girl and 2 boys. Below are their names and dates of birth.
- Chelsea Okafor – 30th September 2011
- Jay Jay Okafor – 2013
- Emmanuel Mandela – 4th February 2016
Among his many kids, it is not known whether any of them would follow in their father’s footsteps. Mr. Ibu said that once he is not on location, he loves to spend quality time with his lovely family.