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Gold for Kannywood’s shinning star, Hadiza Gabon, from Queensland

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On the day that the embattled Kannywood actress, Rahama Sadau, shared pictures that she took with pop star, Akon, on a movie set in the United States (US), her colleague and one of Kannywood’s beloved actress, Hadiza Gabon, was being honoured at an award event in the United Kingdom (UK).

The event, the 20th edition of the African Hollywood Award, organised by Mike Abiola and Golda-John Abiola, held at the Broadway Stratford, London E15 4BQ on Saturday, and had some of the finest Nigerian and British filmmakers and actors in attendance.

The top Kannywood actress was honoured alongside notable Kannywood Producer, Usman Uzee, for their individual contributions to the growth of the Kannywood industry.

Specifically, Hadiza won the best award in the African Films in Hausa category, while Uzee got the award of best Hausa Film Producer.

Star of so many Kannywood flicks, who runs a Foundation for indigent children by the side, Hadiza, even though considers the African Hollywood Award as her biggest so far, is not new to awards.

The actress, who also answers to the name, Adizatou, has received a number of industry awards since she joined the Kannywood industry a little near two decades ago.

Hadiza was named Best Hausa Actress in 2013 by the organisers of the Best of Nollywood Awards, and in 2014, she received the Kannywood MTN award jury prize for acting.

“I thank the organisers for the award and recognition. I feel so honoured.

“I have received some awards, but this means so much to me. I am grateful. I am encouraged to keep at it,” she enthused shortly after she was presented with the award diadem.

Soft-spoken and a natural beauty, Hadiza lights up a picture whenever she comes across, either as a lead or supporting actress, in some of those critically-acclaimed Kannywood movies.

The large Kannywood crowd cheers her whenever her name appears on a movie credit line. Indeed, ask for the natural beauty and magnetic star that has proved that she is good at what she is doing and fingers will point to the shinning star, Hadiza Aliyu, who is popular as Hadiza Gabon.

Born and raised in Gabon to a father who is a Gabonese and a Fulani mum from Mubi in Adamawa State, Hadiza, whose close friends describe as genial, well-mannered, cultured and a good dresser, had her early education in Gabon, from where she studied and was awarded a Diploma in French.

She joined Kannywood a few years back after she arrived Nigeria. She had a chance encounter with top Kannywood actor, Ali Nuhu, who encouraged her to give acting a shot after the actress, who described Nuhu as her ‘brother, mentor and adviser,’ had sought his assistance to launch out as an actress.

With the help and guidance of Nuhu, and later Aminu Sherrif, whom she named as one of her mentors, Hadiza got her break in Kannywood as one of the leading ladies in Zaman Take.

She rode on the back of the success of that movie and a few others after it to become a darling of the movie crowd.

“Everything worked out for me as planned. No one harassed me and no one asked me for anything before I was given a role.

“Meanwhile, I have heard all sorts before I joined Kannywood. But all the negative things I heard about Kannywood turned out to be untrue” she said.

Greatly admired by fans and regarded as one of Kannywood’s hottest actresses, Hadiza’s parents never objected to her following her dream.

She disclosed that they actually gave her all the support and were pleased with her decision to pursue a career in acting.

“They supported me wholeheartedly and I am happy and more relaxed here, because Gabon shares a lot of things in common with Nigeria. The only difference is that we speak mainly French in Gabon.

“I feel at home here and I thank God for how easily I was accepted by the practitioners and my fans.”

Star of Yar Maye; Akrizzana; Bada Ba Rai; Basaja; Daga Ni Sai Ke; Umarni n Uwa; Wata Tafi Wata; and Ziyadat, Hadiza has lost count of the number of movies she has featured in.

But she picked Bansani Ba and Wosilat as her most memorable movie runs.

“They are the first set of movies I took part in. I recall that I was very scared on those sets and that was because I was still learning to speak Hausa then,” she recalled.

But did Hadiza follow her dream because of the financial reward? ‘

“No,” she said, adding: “Money is secondary, even though it is necessary.

“It is the fulfillment I get and the joy that I followed my dream that come first for me.

“Besides, acting is my passion. Money is good, I mean I get paid and I am comfortable and I can pay my bills, but it is not the basic reason I am in it.

“I am just passionate about acting. I am happy in it and I am happy that I was fortunate to gain the confidence of top directors and producers in Kannywood.”

Ask Hadiza if she is in any relationship and the star of Daina Kuka, Dare Daya, Farar Saka and Fatake n Dare would do anything to parry the question.

She always maintains that she likes her privacy and would not want to talk about her private life in print.

But is she pained when some fans get beyond just the usual admiration? She smiled and replied: “I don’t get pained and that is because I have devised a subtle way to keep them in check.

“I have received some very outrageous proposals from people who think actresses are cheap or don’t know what they want in life or that we can do anything for money.

“Sometimes, they see you playing a wayward girl and they think you are wayward in real life. But we are not. We are very responsible people.

“I just tell you off politely, once I know where you are headed.”

Star of some Kannywood movies like Jinin Mijina, Ko Lo and Mukaddari and Anaya, Hadiza, who loves to always adorn native attires and who is a perfume freak, said she spends quality time at home when she is not busy on any movie set.

She hinted that her career ambition is to remain at the top of her game and to do some work outside of Kannywood, much as she loves to wear silver rings.

She revealed that she has a good collection of designer perfume, just as she loves to dance, play music and watch movies too.

“I am a music lover. I like music. I also like to dance when I am at home and less busy and when I am in the mood. I just want to be happy all the time,” she surmised.


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