The name Ebun Oloyede might not readily ring a bell but once the pseudonym, Igwe Olaiya is mentioned, then a popular Yoruba actor with tribal marks comes to mind.
In an interview with Saturday Beats, the actor described his tribal marks as a problem for him, adding that he was glad he was not a professional footballer.
“These tribal marks happen to be a problem. As you are looking at me, I do not have the privilege to be a footballer but if I were one, I would not have been able to play professionally because of these tribal marks. They would believe that you had surgery and you would be banned from playing. Our parents thought it was part of our culture but it was an uncivilised act. What they did was not something good.
“They believed that with the marks on my face, people would be able to identify my lineage but they were fooling themselves. How would they have known if my father had sex with his housemaid and she gave birth to me but his wife decided not to make a fuss about it? Yet people would believe that I am from that lineage. Tribal marks are not a DNA, many people might not agree with me but I know what I am talking about. However, there is nothing I can do about it,” he said.
He, however, added that he had grown used to the marks but vowed never to give his children any tribal marks.
He said, “I travel abroad but I cannot go and do surgery to remove them. In fact, when I started travelling abroad, I saw a lot of people with more visible tribal marks than I have. I do not see it as a big deal anymore but I can never put it on my children’s face because of what I went through.”