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Your activities are weaved round supporting the underprivileged and children generally in the society. Why the focus on these groups?
SOME people were born with silver spoons in their mouths but, my parents could be classified as low income earners and this forced me to venture into petty business at a tender age. My mother was supportive, but my father, like a typical African man, was not all that there for us. With the kind of experience I had as a child, I always feel the pain whenever I come across any child that shares the same economic background with me. This and many other factors necessitated the establishment of my NGO, which has the primary goal of assisting the under privileged. I know there are lots of kids outside there who share the same childhood experience with me. I come across a lot of them in the course of my charity activity and from there, the little the Almighty Allah has blessed me with, I am using it in assisting the needy. Ii am someone who hates seeing people suffering. There was a programme we held last year— African Child we had almost thirty-six schools from primary and secondary school levels in attendance. The participants were so excited as they have not been opportune in their lives to interact with the people above their social class, but the programme afforded them the opportunity. Aside the entertainment aspect of it, the kids were able to display their academic dexterity in various competitions they took part in such as Quran recitation and cultural dance.
How do you fund such activities?
I am not keen about the cost, but the excitement. The cost is enormous, but the satisfaction is something that matters most. At times, nobody is willing to support you except you support yourself. My manager once advised that we sought financial assistance from individuals and private sectors, we did but nothing came out of it. What we are doing is neither for the public to appreciate us sing our praises or for monetary gain, but we are doing it for God to reward us and the little sacrifice that I have made will go a long way in lifting lives. Take for example the last programme we held at Sheraton Hotel. We had a lot of students in attendance. Some of them did not even know where Sheraton is. There were questionnaires seeking to feel the impulse of the people on the programme. Some were asking, ‘Where is Sheraton Hotel and why its choice?’
Some also asked, ‘Does it mean, we want to show off or ‘ Why cant we hold it in Agege, Ajegunle, Badia?’ I answered, it is not for show off, but it is the lesson we want to bring out, the knowledge we want to impact, the memory we want these kids keep throughout their lives.
It’s observed that many people who are involved in activities like yours have a hidden agenda...
People have been asking if I’m involved in these various activities because I want to venture into politics or I’m trying to seek relevance. I can’t predict what will happen tomorrow, but for now, I will say no because I don’t have the zeal for it. I hate cheating and the kind of politics we are playing now in Nigeria is just not it and so I’m not interested. I rather nominate somebody and be a passive player than an active one.
Looking at the political scene, do you think the presence of women are felt more these days?
I think its getting better, especially during this present era, President Goodluck Jonathan’s government. You can see that we have many women in his cabinet. I am happy for them they are doing fine but I still want more women to come on board because I am still optimistic that one day a woman will emerge as the President of this country.
How will you rate President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration?
I am not in a good position to rate him. This is a country that Jonathan met. Some people had been ruling for the past God-knows when and for somebody to just wake up one day and promising that I’m going to give you this or I’m going to do this overnight, is not possible. We just have to exercise patience. President Jonathan is not a magician, let us give him time. By the grace of God, Nigeria will not break up, let’s all be praying for God’s intervention.
Where do you do your shopping?
I shop anywhere. Apart from travelling out and buying anything I feel is good, I do my shopping at any boutique around.
My security personnel even do the shopping on my behalf at Ajegunle, likewise my cleaners.
Who is your favourite fashion designer?
I don’t have favourite designers. I design my clothes myself. I am a designer. I have sewing machines at home. I have even thought my house help to sew and she’s now good at it. How easy has it been managing the home front?
In life, God has a purpose or plan for everyone and when he has a purpose for you, you should work towards its fulfillment.
Nobody is perfect, except Almighty Allah. one thing which I always have at the back of my mind and which keeps me going is the fear of God and whatever I am doing I always make sure that I do it with God’s fear. If I want to make trouble in my office, I will resume at 8:00 am and whenever that happens, everybody knows that there is trouble. and whenever I’m coming here, I make sure that I don’t allow home front issues to affect my office. My job is a very sensitive one.
Immediately you miss it, you are in a serious problem and I always let my staff know this. As we all come in into the office, we drop our problems at the door and wear a new look and when you are through with the day’s job, it’s left to you to pick whatever problem you left at the door or not. Everyone prays for a good partner who will understand him or her. I thank God for my husband, he understands the nature of my job and he’s always trying to make sure, at least when there is problem to stand by me. When customers are on my neck and are complaining that their containers have not been loaded and he is telling me that I have not cooked, then there is going to be a problem. I do the cooking by myself. I don’t allow the house help to cook for my husband. He will not even allow it. I live in FESTAC and with the heavy traffic from Apapa, at times, I go to bed around 11:00p.m and I have to wake up by 5:00 a.m, to say my prayer and set out for work.
What I do everyday is what you can refer to as check and balance.
What does your weekend look like?
I go to parties. You know I am a Yoruba woman. At weekends, Saturday in particular, I mostly relax with my friends. And if I’m not attending a party, I stay at home with my family.
Can you tell us your favourite musician?
Have you seen any foreign artiste that sings better that King Sunny Ade, Ayo Balogun, Adewale Ayuba, 9ice and D’ Banj?
Even when you travel outside the country, people play Nigerians’ favourites. Or is it an oyinbo man that you will call to come and play for you even when abroad?
Your choice of perfume?
Waoh. I love perfume. My latest is Solet. When using perfume, I can wear ten.
What do you hate most?
I hate the word house Wife. What are you housing? What are you doing at home. Women should come out and work.