Allure Investigates: Where Are They Now?
By Yemisi Suleiman
They were hugely successful in the 90s, and they practically ruled the scene with their craft all those years, dazzling us with their unforgettable charm and glamour.
They were personalities everyone couldn’t stop talking about, they made waves on the red carpet, setting trends and inspiring millions with their iconic styles and pure charm.
But have you ever wondered what happened to some of these celebrities and where they are now? While some of these celebrities are still very much around and working today, others have dedicated themselves to the work of God and some other private ventures.
Take a walk down memory lane with us and check out some of our favorite celebrities across the fashion, beauty, and social scene and what they are up to now. You are sure to feel a touch of nostalgia and yearn for the days of pure fun and glamour.
1. Larry K Ojomo – Mon Ami
Prolific designer, Larry K Ojomo simply known by his brand name Mon’Ami, was a force to reckon with in the fashion industry back in the 90s. The designer who carved a niche for himself in Nigeria with his award-winning craftsmanship that brought him numerous achievements and awards, suddenly dissapered from the scene when the ovation was loudest, leaving his numerous clients craving for more. Last we heard of him was his dramatic Bailey’s Collection showcased at the at the Africa International Fashion Week held in 2015.
He is still in the fashion industry running his brand, albeit quietly., alongside his other private business.
2. Tessy Oliseh Amaize – Teslo Concept
Tessy Oliseh-Amaize shot to limelight some years back, when she beat 126 other Nigerian fashion designers to clinch the Best Fashion Designer Award at the Nigeria Fashion Show (NFS) 2006 /200.
She later showcased the winning collection that year at the NFS in Paris, a feat which shot her to the pinnacle of her career.
The British-trained designer’s career experience includes; working with some top British fashion houses including Gharani Strok and Fashion Forum in Kent.
Designs by her brand, Tesslo Concepts have been showcased at several fashion shows; Nigeria Fashion Week, Stars on the Runway, Nigeria Model Awards and Encomium Black and White Ball.
At the peak of her fame, the designer got married in 2014 and thereafter, recoiled to her shell for reasons best known to her. In recent times, however, Tessy who currently lives in the US with her husband, has been busy promoting her brand on social media and from the look of her collection, there is no doubt that the designer is still on top of her game.
3. Sylvia Edem – Miss Nigeria 2002
Miss Nigeria 2002, Sylvia Edem now Emechete was one of the most outgoing beauty queens during her reign. Even after her time as Miss Nigeria, the pretty Queen was most celebrated and everything about her was news for the public.
She was loved in social circles and was invited to the most glamorous events. Like a thunderbolt, she dissapered from the scene without a notice, leaving her numerous fans wondering and guessing about her whereabout. Thank God for social media, the beauty queen who celebrated 40 two years ago, with an all white garden party, is married and lives in the UK with her husband and children. She currently runs a vlog known as Luminosity TV, where she talks and advises her numerous followers on various life issues.
4. Kesse Jabari
Kesse Jabari was one of the strongest names in the fashion industry years back. The former employee of Silverbird entertainment company, ventured into fashion and became one of the most celebrated fashion brands in the local market at the time and was blessed with financial and professional success.
However, for some reasons, the name Jesse Jabari began to slip off people’s minds, as the brand went into total oblivion.
Years later, the Delta State-born designer who has obviously relocated to the US revealed in an interview that though he had professional success, but at the junction of the ‘Kesse Jabari’ celebrity and experience, was a man in conflict. A man possessed with the spirit of a broader vision.
Jesse was forced by unforeseen circumstances to terminate the Nigerian experience and relocated abroad. He was mentally, physically, spiritually bored and psychologically bankrupt after successfully staging our Fashion Project/Rhythm African…The Spirit…The Sign…The Sound. He lost the creative impetus to promote the brand as he got tired of the ‘same ole same ole’ in a market that did not provide an enabling environment to fully express his creative impetus. He stopped enjoying being Kesse Jabari the designer, the actor, and the face behind the brand, and walked away from the fame and everything to begin a new journey of possibilities with his wife and children.
5. David Kolawola Vaughan – Dakova
David Kolawole-Vaughan otherwise known as DAKOVA, was one of the most influential designers in the 1990’s in Nigeria, long before he obtained his business administration degree from the University of Lagos (UNILAG) in 1998.
He was one of the very few Nigerians who saw early, the potential that fashion portends and wasted no time in diving in and making the best of it.
Dakova was famous for organising one of the most spectacular fashion shows in his hey days, a feat which projected his popularity and consequently increasing his clientale base, spanning the rich and famous in Africa.
With over 105 fashion shows and exhibitions to his credit, and a vast clientele, the Chief Executive Officer of DAKOVA Exclusive Fashions Ltd, which he set up in 1986, could no longer sustain his brand and the designer decided to try his hands on other things. Dakova reportedly dabbled into politics, worked as aide to a serving minister, an aspirant for the Senate from Lagos Central Senatorial District, amongst other appointments.
He also set up a nightclub, Aristotle Champagne Lounge in Abuja, which shut down few years later as a result of some unpleasant developments.
Erasing all unpleasant experiences life threw at him, including the fire that gutted his Ebute Meta outfit, we gathered Dakova has returned to revive his fashion outlet and is gradually getting his steam back.
6. Obaro Ibru
Obaro Ibru, the handsome fun-loving son of the former MD of Oceanic bank, Mrs. Cecilia Ibru, was the hottest kid on the bloc for a couple of years. He was young, rich, very upwardly mobile, very stylish and held most of the ladies spellbound with his overall package. He was named Style Personality at the now-rested St.Moritz Style Selection show. During this time, he was the soul of many parties, and a regular fixture and feature at all the right parties, events and occasions.
All these came to an abrupt end when the once, fun-loving fellow suddenly dissapered into thin air, following his mother’s running battle with the state for corruption charges in 2010.
We understand he tried to make a brief comeback a couple years ago, but his allure had worn off and he was left to unceremoniously recoil into his shell.
7. Vien Testola
Vien Bemigho Tetsola, the dark-complexioned ex-beauty queen has not been in the news for a long time now. She won Miss Nigeria in 2000 but her journey to fame began in the late 90‘s when she became romantically involved with Hip-hop sensation, Tuface. They were inseparable as they attended functions together. The millennium queen as she was fondly called, completed her scandal free reign and went on to float a foundation for the less privileged.
The native of Delta State was rumoured to be romantically involved with flamboyant Pastor Chris Okotie that made headlines in gossip columns. This rumour was even fueled after her 30th birthday bash where the reverred man of God played a major role.
She has since dedicated herself to the vanyard of the Lord and now serve as the Head of Government of Holy City Empire Of God, Beulah Land Ministry with the Designate – CHRISTUS DOMINUS.
At the age of 30, Vien, we gathered received a call from the Lord to enter into the Ministry of the Christ, as a witness to the people, a leader and commander for the people. And she was given a Throne name by the Lord – ISRAEL SHEPHERD.
8. Ebele And Ify Ugochukwu – Sleek Sisters
Dr. Ebele Ugochukwu is the MD of Sleek Studio Ltd, a company that specializes in the sale and marketing of Sleek Makeup from the UK.
She, alongside her sister, Barrister Ify Ugochukwu started the brand in 2007. Few years later, the Sleek brand bacame not just a makeup and cosmetics brand, but a brand to beat in the beauty industry, while gaining stardom as a major business empire.
The two sisters cemented Sleek as the premium beauty brand in Nigeria, empowering young girls alongside with its highly-publicised and well-produced ‘Face of Sleek’ competition and model search. The beauty contest became the rave of the moment, which saw top personalities, Nollywood stars and Lagos socialites lobbying to attend the show each year. While this lasted, Ebele and Ify became hot birds on the social scene and were usually on the guests lists of top Lagos events.
However, after settling comfortably in the consciousness of many Nigerians, problems began; first, with the Sleek Sisters fighting endlessly to get off adulterated Sleek make up products that had flooded the market then. Later on, the much-coveted Face of Sleek contest was put on hold, and subsequently, died a natural death.
Though Sleek make-up and beauty products is still out in the market, the two sisters have practically stayed off the social scene for personal reasons. Allure gathered that the sisters are doing well shuttling between Nigeria and Europe as they strive to continue to give their clients the best.