Arts & Entertainment

How 22-Year-Old Ilebaye Won Big Brother Naija All-Stars Show

In a grand finale that left fans at the edge of their seats, the first season of Big Brother Naija All-Stars concluded on Sunday night, October 1, 2023, with Ilebaye Precious Odiniya,  popularly known as the Gen Z baddie, claiming a remarkable victory.

This win marks a historic moment in the reality show’s legacy, as Ilebaye emerged triumphant amidst stiff competition, capturing the hearts of viewers across the nation. She was also a part of the show’s first-ever all-female top-3 and the first top-3 with only a single gender in the show’s history. Ilebaye’s win was also the closest the show has recorded in years, as fans couldn’t tell which of the top-3 ladies would get the win as they headed into the final live show. The ladies had the closest poll records with Ilebaye getting 30.08% of votes, Mercy Eke, the runner-up, had 23.84%, while CeeC, who came in third, had 23.41% of total finale votes.

The eighth season of Big Brother Naija, aptly tagged “All Stars,” witnessed an intense 70-day journey that came to a climactic close, culminating in Ilebaye’s well-deserved win. The finale saw her outshine the competition, leaving former winner Mercy Eke and former first-runner-up Cynthia Nwadiora, also known as CeeC, in the wake as the second and third, respectively.

Ilebaye’s victory not only solidifies her place in the annals of Big Brother Naija history but also represents a remarkable turnaround from her brief stint in the 2022 BBNaija Level Up season, where she faced an early eviction after just three weeks. The All-Stars season provided her with a redemption arc, showcasing her resilience, charisma, and undeniable star power.

Originally from Kogi State, Ilebaye Precious Odiniya, a talented actress, rose to fame as a housemate in BBNaija Season 7: “Level Up.” Now, she has clinched the title of BBNaija All Stars winner, making her mark in Big Brother Naija history.

A proud criminology and security studies graduate, Ilebaye’s journey in the spotlight began early, showcasing her acting skills in popular shows like “Papa Ajasco,” “Super Story,” and “Nnenna and Friends” since her JSS1 days.  She is definitely not new to the limelight.

In her first Big Brother appearance in 2022, she joined as the fourth housemate but left after three weeks. However, in the eighth season, Ilebaye’s strong presence was defined by her controversy with Ike, her romance with Neo, and her friendship with Doyin. Ilebaye’s win stood out because many viewers saw her as a target for bullying, and some housemates underestimated her due to her age and personality, casting her as the underdog. This win represents a significant comeback from season seven to season eight.

To celebrate Ilebaye’s victory, many entertainment industry personalities and past BBNaija housemates, including Ebuka, Vee, Nengi, and others, expressed their excitement and sent congratulatory messages to the All-Star winner on social media.

Media personality and Big Brother host, Ebuka Uchendu, extended warm congratulations to the winner on Instagram, saying, “Congratulations, Ilabaye. From being a small pepper to becoming the BBNaija All-Stars winner.”

Famous singer, David Adeleke,, popularly known as Davido, expressed his happiness for Ilebaye in a tweet, mentioning, “ILEBAYE ….I love a success story !’’

The 22-year-old, now crowned an All-Star winner, walks away with a staggering N120 million grand prize, a luxurious weekend getaway for two, and a sleek SUV, among a host of other rewards. Her journey from eviction to All-Star champion is a testament to the unpredictable nature of the Big Brother Naija platform, creating a season that will be etched in the memories of fans for years to come.

As the curtain falls on this season, Ilebaye’s win not only signifies a personal triumph but also serves as an inspiration to aspiring housemates, illustrating that every setback can be a setup for a major comeback. The legacy of Big Brother Naija All-Stars Season 8 is now eternally intertwined with the name Ilebaye Precious Odiniya, a true Gen Z baddie, who seized her moment in the spotlight and emerged as the ultimate All-Star winner.

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