It was a roll call of friends, colleagues, family members, neighbors, business partners, including church members as Christian Paul, a Nollywood actor, and MTN Season of Surprise 2014, marked his birth in his humble abode in the Surulere area of Lagos. The day was the 7th of September.
The event which took place in no particular order saw well-wishers trooping in as from almost 5 pm. The light skin, cute looking actor cum pastor welcomed guests in his usual cheerful mode. It was a moment for laughter and jokes as apostle Paul, as he is sometimes called, had a word for his invited guests. The first phase of the celebration kicked off with the celebrant making poses for a different snapshot. Thereafter it was the moment for the group photograph, followed by light refreshment.
After the cutting of the cake, everyone was invited to say something about the actor. Christian Paul in his characteristic wit appealed to all not to say anything bad about him, especially since his church members were in attendance and as everyone knows his condition. This kicks the stage rolling with lots of funny remarks. Chubby chocolate skin Nollywood actress Ngozi… was the first to speak. As she puts it: ‘every time apostle Paul sees me, he will say –“come and do me that thing you always do to me”.’ She expressed the phrase in Igbo language. This caused roaring laughter amongst all.
Another Nollywood actress spoke up. ‘Christian Paul is a nice guy, and some that can be referred to as an industry.’ More rounds of laughter. ‘In the industry, most actors are known as flirts, but Christian Paul is with a difference. He loves hanging around ladies but he has nothing to do with them.’ This remark prompted the guests to the chorus –“are you sure”, and more laughter and chorusing of the word ‘industry’.
Also, Gloria, a writer, talked about Christian Paul carrying a lot of grace irrespective of his talents and wits. She says: ‘Christian Paul is one person who is focus, and positive-minded irrespective of whatever challenge he faces. He sees and believes in his dream, and he knows how to rub that part into anyone that anything is achievable if one remains undaunted.’
Another to speak was a male guest. He complimented Christian Paul for his sharp dress sense and his ability to get on with people, as well as being very humble. He recounted just meeting with the Nollywood actor only recently but seems as though they had known for much longer. ‘And honestly, this man has a knack for women.’ More laughter. And more remarks kept pouring in, especially the witty ones. When it was time for a tv presenter to make her remark, she added that Christian Paul is also a romantic person, and this followed with a loud “aww”. Christian Paul immediately teased her with, ‘you are going to propose to me today’.
Not left out in the praise was the actor’s maternal uncle. He told the excited guests that Christian Paul is not just an actor, but a multi-talented person, and also a minister of God. He exalted the celebrant for his simplicity and said his hanging around women holds nothing serious just his fun nature. Christian Paul immediately threw back: “it is because of my condition”, prompting even more hilarious laughter. And then, to add to the voices that spoke was the actor’s church member. She told guests that her pastor, apostle Paul is someone who encourages and advises, and someone who accept people irrespective of class.
Showing appreciation to all who had something to say, even those who threw some witty remarks, the celebrant said he put the little birthday party as a way of getting friends, colleagues and all, to come to his new home. In his word: “I would have loved to make it a big party, but decided otherwise because of the xenophobia taking place in South Africa. But, I want you to know, anyone that said bad about me here is my enemy – especially the men. You know I’m a fine man and women always come around me, that’s why they said I’m a womanizer.’ To this, the guests laughed.
‘Somehow, it has to happen here in my humble apartment as I want my friends to know where I stay. I like having people around me. And I’m happy you came. There are people I expect to propose to me today. This my condition they are talking about, I want it solved today. If you asked me to propose, I don’t know who I’m going to propose to. So, I need the ladies to start proposing so I can make up my mind.
‘And I want to thank everyone who has taken the time to come, from the print, electronic, friends, colleagues, even my landlord – I hope you’re giving him everything we are eating here, I don’t want wahala.’ Turning to his landlord: ‘this is just a small get together, nothing serious; don’t mind the way they are dressed, just try and understand. As you can see, there is no DJ. Just take it easy with me.’ And the guests gave in to this joke. ‘Ehh, what else?’ The guests responded: “the proposal”.
‘Okay. If you know you love Christian Paul, let me see you raise your hand,’ the celebrant announced. ‘No, I don’t mean the men. All the men put your hand down. I’m referring to the ladies, those who are single and searching.’ And from the crowd came a voice asking if he could be her third husband. This too went with so much laughter. It was indeed a jolly outing as the actor with more than 200 flicks to his title showed so much appreciation.
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Written By: Gloria Okezie-Okafor
Photography By: GCMEDIA