We want the whole package. A genuine and loving romance, a fulfilling career, a beautiful place to call home. The journey to these goals is definitely a roller coaster and can be difficult for some to attain. Below are African couples who are showing us that it isn’t impossible to find a lasting love and sustain a successful career and life while doing so.
1. Omotola Jalade Ekeinde and Captain Matthew Ekeinde
Mrs Ekeinde is the prominent and award-winning Nigerian actress, singer, humanitarian, and one of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World for 2013. Mrs Ekeinde began her career in 1995 as a model then made her acting debut in Mortal Inheritance. Aside from her personal successes, Mrs Ekeinde spearheaded her NGO the Omotola Youth Empowerment Project (OYEP) which aims to empower the youth. Mrs Ekeinde is also a UN ambassador for the World Food Programme, works alongside save the children UK, enough is enough, Amnesty International, the Maternal Mortality struggle in Sierra-Leone and the Own Up, Pay Up and Clean Up campaign for Niger Delta. Mr Ekeinde is a pilot and businessman who is the founder of Aquatic Jungle; a tourism and entertainment centre in Badagry, Nigeria. The Ekeinde’s have four children.
2. Boris Kodjoe and Nicole Ari Parker
Mr Kodjoe, born Boris Frederic Cecil Tay-Natey Ofuatey-Kodjoe is the German and Ghanaian actor who’s appeared in television and blockbuster films. Mr Kodjoe was named 50 Most Beautiful People in the World in 2002 and it is easy to see why. Ms Parker is a producer and actor in her own right and has appeared on screen with her husband as seen in the series Soul Food. Ms Parker and Mr Kodjoe met on set while filming Soul Food and have been married for 12 years and have two children.
3. Folorunsho and Modupe Alakija
Mrs Alakija is a Nigerian businesswoman who is the second richest African woman. She is the vice chair of Famfa oil which is in partnership with Chevron and Petrobras. Alakija worked in the fashion, printing, corporate banking, and textiles fields before amassing her massive wealth in the crude oil business. Mr Alakija is a lawyer and got married to Mrs Alakija in 1976. Mr and Mrs Alakija have four children and a plethora of grandchildren.
4. Basetsana and Romeo Kumalo
Mr Kumalo is a telecommunications mogul from South Africa who holds high-profile positions such as CEO and founder of Washirika Holdings, director of Kalon venture partners and serves on numerous boards. Mr Kumalo has also appeared on the South African rendition of the famed television show Shark Tank. Mrs Kumalo is a businesswoman, beauty queen, and television personality. Mr and Mrs Kumalo began dating in 1997 and married in 2000. They have 3 children.
5. Archbishop Nicholas Duncan Williams and Rosa Whitaker Duncan Williams
Archbishop Williams is the overseer and chairing archbishop of Christian Action Faith Ministries (CAFM) in Ghana, Accra. Archbishop Duncan Williams founded and led the charismatic movement in Ghana and the west of Africa 40 years ago which is still extremely prevalent today. CAFM has 300 memberships and branches worldwide. Mrs Whitaker Duncan Williams is the CEO of The Whitaker Group, an African consultancy company which formulated the African Growth and Opportunity Act; Mrs Whitaker Duncan Williams as the initial assistant U.S. trade representative for Africa under the Clinton and Bush regimes. Mr and Mrs Duncan Williams married in 2008 after Mr Duncan Williams divorced his first wife of 26 years.
6. Zari Hassan and Diamond Platinumz
Originally Zarinah, Ms Hassan is a singer, college founder, and cosmetics businesswoman of Ugandan, Indian, Burundian, and Somalian descent. Naseeb Abdul Juma or Diamond Platinumz is a Tanzanian recording artist who’s gaining popularity in the mainstream music scene due to his collaborations with rapper Rick Ross and Nigeria’s Davido. Ms Hassan and Mr Juma are proud parents of two children.
7. Sandra Appiah and Isaac Babu-Boateng
Mr Babu-Boateng is an entrepreneur and CEO of Babu Global which oversees businesses in the media, entertainment, technology, and real-estate to name a few. Mr Babu-Boateng was named Forbes Magazine’s 30 under 30: Africa’s Best Young Entrepreneur’s list. Mr Babu-Boateng is the leading pioneer in the progression of the Pan-African Millennial movement. Ms Appiah is the CEO of Face2Face Africa and managing partner of Babu Global. Ms Appiah formerly served as the COO of Face2Face Africa and has worked with MTV, HBO, and The New York Times. Ms Appiah has also been featured on Forbes Magazine’s 30 under 30: Africa’s Best Young Entrepreneur’s list.
8. Mohammed and Haina Ibrahim
Mr Ibrahim is a Sudanese entrepreneur who founded Celtel International, one of the pioneering companies to provide cellular phone service in Africa and the Middle East. Dedicated to fighting corruption, Mr Ibrahim founded the Mo Ibrahim Foundation (MIF) which intends to instil leadership skills and the advancement of governance in Africa. Mrs Ibrahim was a consultant radiologist who now works with Mr Ibrahim in aiding in the advancement of Africa via the MIF.
These couples are clearly not allowing the demands that emanate from high-profile positions and family life stop them from achieving their goals collectively and individually. It’s certainly inspiring to have solid examples to a vision that many dream of putting to fruition.
Some more pictures of other power couples:
Barack Obama and Michelle Obama
Peter Okoye and Lola Omotayo
Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith
Jay Z and Beyonce Knowles
Dwayne Wade and Gabrielle Union
Banky W and Adesua Etomi