Atunyota Alleluya Akpobome, also known as Alibaba or King of Comedy and one of Nigeria’s founding fathers of comedy, is a Nigerian stand-up comedian and actor, a presenter, a writer, a motivational speaker, and he has a strong flair for developing ideas. He enjoys art as well as reading. Alibaba owns a slew of other companies.
Early Life & Education
Alibaba Akpobome was born on June 24, 1965, in Warri, Delta State, to the royal family of Agbarha Otor. He was nurtured in Warri for his first eight years as the first son in a family of multiple children. His father is a retired military from Lagos. Alibaba attended Ibru College in Delta and Command Secondary School in Ipaja, Lagos. He earned a degree in Religious Studies & Philosophy from Bendel State University in Ekpoma, Nigeria, which is now Ambrose Alli University.
Alibaba returned to Lagos in 1990, having completed his degree, to pursue his comic skills. He had intended to study law, but he realized that making people laugh would be a better way to succeed than defending them.
Alibaba began his career by performing at events, appearing on radio shows with Bisi Olatilo, Sani Irabor, and Mani Onumonmu, and appearing on television shows with Patrick Doyle, Charly Boy, and Danladi Bako. He worked as Prince Adedapo Benjamin Adelegan’s executive assistant at DP Lekki Limited in 1991.
The January 1st concert is an annual comedic event started by Alibaba in 2014. In 2015, he launched Spontaneity, a quarterly meeting for emerging comedians. Woli Arole stood out among the finalists in the 2016 competition.
According to Alibaba, his company is huge enough to accommodate everyone interested in a career in comedy. He sponsors, mentors, and presents a number of comedians in order to maintain standards and promote professionalism.
Alibaba is happily married. The name of his wife is Mary Akpobome.
Ali Baba was inducted into the Johnnie Walker ‘Striding Man’ Society in 2009 which recognizes men who have achieved great strides in their chosen fields and who motivate and encourage others.
In 2012, he rang the Year End Closing Bell of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, the first Nigerian comedian to do so.
He is a Special Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Corps.
In March 2015, Ali Baba was featured on CNN African voices, speaking about his goal to professionalize and gain acceptance for Nigerian comedians.
In April 2018, Ali Baba received the Paul Harris Fellowship by Rotary International for his contribution to the Nigerian Comedy industry
Awards & Nominations
|2010||Comedy for Change||In commemoration of his 20 years on stage|
|2009||City People Entertainment||Invaluable contribution to the Entertainment Industry|
|2009||National Daily Award||Comedian of the decade|
|2008||The News||For turning stand up comedy into a viable business|
|2008||Diamond Award for Comedy||For helping the growth & development of the Comedy Industry in Nigeria|
|2007||RCCG||Enablers Merit Award|
|2006||Eric’s Entertainment Inc||Recognition of his solid support to young entrepreneurs|
|2006||Lagos State University||Award of Excellence|
|2006||City People Entertainment||Invaluable contribution to the Entertainment Industry|
|2005||National Comedy Award||Comedy Enterprise|
|2004||Pendulum Awards LASU National Association of Physics Student||Icon of Comedy|
|2004||1st Nigeria Entertainment Awards||Icon of Comedy|
|2003||Delta State University||Achievers Merit Award|
|2002||Laughter Incorporated||Immense contribution to the comedy Industry|
|2001||Laughter Awards – Baziks Theatre Abuja||Outstanding Performance|
Alibaba’s comic prowess has accumulated wealth for him. Many online sources had positioned him to be the second richest comedian in Nigeria. His net worth is estimated at around #2 billion.