Venita Akpofure hails from Delta State, but was born in the United Kingdom, and now lives in Nigeria. She was one of the persons who brought twists and spice to the Big Brother House, the popular reality show at the 4th season which ended last year. Prior to her appearance in the Big Brother House, she was already popular as Mimi in ‘Ay’s Crib’. She is an actress, an entrepreneur, model and former video vixen. Venita is also a mother of two. She speaks about herself, the life of a celebrity and sheds light on her personality in this interview with FAVOUR BOLUWADE. Excerpts:
You had a controversial persona in the Big Brother House, one day it’s a nice you, another day, you are the protagonist, and we must have missed out on the real Venita. So, can you tell us what we don’t know?
I am not a protagonist neither am I Schizophrenic. I behaved normally for someone who is very caring; I am very caring and, well in the House, I had more experiences in handling issues pertaining to life
How have you adapted to your increased popularity?
I’m not sure, I’m just working. I face my work.
Before AY’s crib, what other things were you into?
Before AY’s Crib, I think it was pretty obvious what I was into. I was into modelling, I was on magazine covers and on television series. I was already in the face of work.
Is the Nigerian entertainment industry paying enough attention to tackling some of our societal issues?
Sometimes, we are, sometimes we are not simply because politics does not allow us express ourselves freely. For example, we have this ridiculous social media that spreads news faster about things that are happening which we use. So yes to a certain extent and not because nobody wants to risk his whole life because someone is trying to keep you quiet.
Which societal activity have you been involved in since the lockdown?
Currently, in relation to COVID-19 relief, I have things I do personally, as I made donations in my local area. Same as my group and my fellow housemates.
Are there roles you would never agree to play on a set? Which ones and why?
No, there is not really much roles I would never agree to play. That’s irreplaceable.
What other activities have you been up to since ‘Pepper Dem’ ended?
They are pretty obvious on my page; I believe this is a reason this interview is taking place in the first place. I have so much doing; they are up on my social media handles. I have a channel ‘The Venita Live’ on YouTube channel where I and other activities are on Instagram, Twitter, Tiktok and Snapchat.
Has there been any pressure to impress your fans?
At first there is pressure to impress them; however I need to remember to stay true to myself in the midst of it all.
What challenges do you face in the industry and how do you sort them out?
I had more challenges before I went into the House, you know, discrimination, people concerned about my accent and questions on if I can actually act because of the transition I made from modelling. But now I think my industry is somewhat taking a hold.
An average Nigerian woman has been groomed to take up anything that happens once she’s married and so many narratives have come up to fight against that oppression, are these narratives effective to a fault, are women standing up enough for themselves?
We cannot speak for every woman, we don’t know what is going on with everyone out there in the world and even Nigeria, sure we are traditionally and mentally backward; groomed to be that way but there are narratives changing. It’s 2020 and most women also know they have choices right now.
Are you now in a relationship?
Well, nope! I am not
Is the society too judgemental when it comes to celebrities’ issues? What do you expect of the public whenever the news is out there?
I expect them to behave completely irrational and tear apart whenever the news is out there in public about what celebrities are doing. But what you will see in the comments sections of celebrities if they are hailing you? But then they are working with you one minute, next thing they are not working with you. There are just sets of confused bunch out there. If for example,Toke poses in a bikini, she would suffer more backlash than Rihanna or the Kardashians. We are very full of a lot of confusion when it comes to people judging us on what we can do in the society
Covid-19 is the topic right now all over the world, how has the pandemic affected you, especially in the entertainment industry?
Obviously, we are closed now. So it has affected the entertainment industry right now. I have two small businesses, including my hair line which is feeding me right now.
Do you trust the lockdown has done us good so far?
I’m not sure we responded fast enough. But I want to give commendation definitely to the government for what they are doing. The president didn’t respond too late and he didn’t have to wait for 5 million houses of councils to make decisions so far. And the lockdown I can’t really say how effective it is yet, with the numbers out there; I’m still not sure of the current numbers now so I can’t really speak much on that.
Which do you prefer: that the donations for fight against Coronavirus should be given to the government alone or the populace should have their share sent to their accounts as palliatives?
I definitely agree the public have their shares sent to their accounts as palliatives. But to be fair, I think it might be better for anyone who wants to do something to do it. You can’t really trust someone with your money effectively the way you want. At this point of time, we are in confusion and there has been a lot of disconnection socially.
If a fire incident occurs, which would you pick first; your laptop documents or phone?
Oh, well I think documents can be replaced nowadays. I will probably pick up my phone over the documents to be honest.
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