Thursday, January 21, 2010

Interview Thursday "I've personally lost faith in Nigerian leadership/politics of Nigeria"- Temitayo Olofinlua

"Interview Thursday" is back with Temitayo [ Bookaholic] in focus. Temitayo was the writer that got me interviewed on her True Love Column in October 2009. She beats me to my own plan to interview the dynamic young lady! But hope is not lost as we still find a way around sharing Temitayo's opinion and knowledge on current issues affecting Nigeria. Temitayo Olofinlua studied Literature at Obafemi Awolowo University and currently works as a freelance writer and editor. Her writing has been featured in various publications, online and in print [ check this short story on child abuse by Temitayo]. She runs the Bookaholic Blog with a fantastic friend- Isabella Akinseye. She also loves teaching but hey she is full of surprises…

What is your prediction for the future of Nigeria in 2010?
Haha, predictions aint my forte, not a prophet o! And to predict for a whole Nigeria? That’s too much work even for the biggest prophets…don’t even know what will happen the next second. I wish I had that power to see into the future, maybe would be different, maybe would have let some magic direct my Mama’s legs to some other country, maybe even Ghana, but hey I’m here. Okay back to Nigeria, would just say that the country is in our hands, leaders and followers…the same way it was in the hands of the people of the past, it’s in our hands; whatever would be said of the country tomorrow is in our actions today. Is that a prediction?

From journalistic point of view, is it not too premature to be calling for the resignation of President Umar Yar'adua?
Journalistic, hmmm…I think if he did things right before he left all these wouldn’t have happened that is people calling for his resignation. Maybe there’d have been some national fasting declared by different sects for the wellbeing of the president. But this silence, this sudden speech that he made to his country through BBC…and the many things that ‘only’ his inner-inner kitchen cabinet has access to makes things scary thus the agitation. So what you were saying about the call being premature, I am not sure it is…say the President’s not doing things right is taking the whole nation for a ride…which is even more immature.

Is there ever going to be a change in the leadership as far as Nigeria is concerned? Huge question…change?
What do you mean by change? These breed of politicians that these parties dish out? This politricks of selfishness we have everywhere? Not sure. Personally lost faith in Nigerian leadership/politics. There are a few who have made one smile but hey leaders are humans, they fail (Nigerian leaders seem to fail woefully) and that’s just being human! Sorry if I sound very pessimistic but it’s my way of not getting heart broken when any leader fails. A way of taking my life in my hands.

Nigerian is on US watch list because of the suicide bombing attempt of a Nigerian man, Umar Mutallab, do you think this is a right step?
America loves America. America will never take chances when it comes to protecting its own. America knows what’s right for them…what can I say about it being right or wrong? What does it portend for Nigerians than being labeled ‘terrorist’? Does it stop the onslaught in the Niger-Delta? Does it stop our politicians from terrorizing us daily by starching money meant for all away? Does it stop the policemen from pointing their guns at innocent people (I hate seeing that!)? Does it stop all these? I don’t know too much about rightness or wrongness of the decision. For the Americans that’s the best decision for them…and we are quick to say it’s wrong but look around—are we not terrorists? Don’t we terrorize ourselves daily?

What should US have done differently?
Differently…ha, can’t tell…I don’t look into the past o! Don’t mind me but I think they should be much sincere to themselves!

You freelance for True Love magazine and the magazine has demonstrated its commitment to women stories from all aspect, do you think the name of the magazine is relevant to its work?
This name comes up here again. I wasn’t writing for True Love when that name was adopted. I never thought it was a big deal until I wanted to interview someone and she said that she doesn’t buy the mag because of the name; that how can she be caught by her grandchildren reading a mag called True Love? Then I started thinking and asking…TL is a franchise so they kept the name. But hey the name has worked, why would you change a working portion?

What else would you prefer to do if you are not a writer?
Big question…I guess I would teach. Would still do that. Travel, is that a job? Or anything that would make me express myself…that would make me look within and be a blessing. Yeah I think that’s it…does that make sense?

In all the interviews or stories you have covered as a writer/journalist, which stayed striking to you till date and why?
Not done too much. But I’d say two—What’s in a Name? A piece about the significance of names to women…it sought to ask the question—yes, ask—why should women change their names after marriage? What does a name mean to a woman? And the second piece has to be the piece on MKAsante (available on google)…very inspiring young man. Haha, not done those interviews that cause trouble. Maybe you should ask me that question in two years or more, may have some dramatic answers for you, who knows?

What outstanding resolution do you have for 2010 and why?
Don’t do resolutions by the year o! Every day is a new one…a new opportunity to dream; a brand new day with many reasons to smile. Seriously, I hope to do more stuff—more writing; more reading; more work on my writing. And hey, more diligence to my work…I make it; I break it but hey there’s hope for me. That I know!


Rita said...

Wow, the Interview Thursday Series is back!

Another great Interview. The answers were sincere and realistic. I like.

Was really amused by "Travel, is that a job?"

Vera Ezimora said...


Temitayo!!! This is a brilliant interview. But how the heck did Rita beat me to it? *sigh*

I have to say that I, too, have lost my faith in Nigerian politics. It's quite unfortunate.

Myne Whitman said...

Interview Thursdays! Nice to know one of the faces behind bookaholic. The answers were real and to the point. I love the name True Love, LOL...

Emilia said...

There is only one ruler GOD! The best leadership is from him

Geebee said...

Glad to see that Interview Thursday's back. Big kudos to Bookaholic. I love what u're doing on ur blog and in ur columns on TL although i wish you could be more vocal politically. Let's face it, we've got a big problem on our hands in this country and there's still no end in sight. God help us!

Anonymous said...

Cheek brings success. ....................................................

Anonymous said...

i concur with everything she said

AlooFar said...

Nice one, Tayo.

Vera Ikeji said...

God is our strength and will see us through.

StandTall-The Activist said...

She is a thinker, our lady Tayo is.

missmays said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
missmays said...

I really enjoyed this interview as well as other posts here, good to come across your blog, will certainly be checking back in.

My Passion, my focus, the change that I want to see in the world - is my propellent factor.

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