Lolu Shomuyiwa: I Wanted to Be a CIA Agent, But…

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Born Omololu Adetokunbo Shomuyiwa, the ex-Big Brother Naija 2018 contestant has grown to be a toast of many during and after his time in the house. His poise, class and attitude made him a man to reckon with and this, undoubtedly, encouraged MisKay Men, Partick Slim and Mia Atafo to style him. In this interview with Tosin Clegg, he talks about his time in Big Brother Naija house, his career before then, future plans and a lot more 

Lolu is not one to shy away from challenges

That is making a very conscious effort to be successful. Lolu is pretty much that guy you call at 2a.m. and ask what’s going on? I’m a hard worker and I am not one to shy away from challenges. And I am the definition of your almost perfect guy, and I say almost because am not perfect. I have my flaws here and there. 

My career on radio started in the university

I went to the University of Ilorin and that was when the radio interest started. I was among some students asked to work at the radio station. Prior to that, my mother was in the media before she passed on and of all her kids, I was the only one with the media flair. My mum always wanted me to be a Doctor, but I’m so far from that right now. As a child, I think I wanted to be like a CIA agent or some agent. I remember there was a time I went on the CIA website looking for a career, but radio came through at the university. During the holidays, I did public relations and from there I started making money to make ends meet, as I had a sister to look after. Investment banking came about and that’s how I moved to London and then came back to radio. I studied Sociology but I had minors in politics, history and business. 

I auditioned for Big Brother Africa twice

I auditioned for Big Brother Africa twice and I didn’t get picked, so when the audition for Big Brother Naija was announced I was very reluctant. Besides, I had a job so I felt I should just stick to it. But surprisingly, in one day, nine of my friends called, urging me to go for the audition and that if I didn’t make it, it would be on record that I tried anyway. I was in Abuja at the time and stage after stage of the audition, I kept on moving and then I entered the house. Actually, I had always wanted to be on the show since the first day I saw it. So, I felt if I was on the show I would be more than happy. But after the first two times and after trying a third time, I felt there was no harm in trying again, and here we are today. 

I have been a big fan of the show

Every year I watched the show, and even if I was smart or intelligent enough to say this is what is going to happen next, I might be right half way but the rest exceeds expectations. Which is why am quick to tell everybody the show exceeds expectations irrespective of the country it is in. Going into the house wasn’t like I had a plan, but I am a very observant person. I’m one to just sit back and observe everybody. That’s who I am and that’s how I was wired going into the house. If I did have any strategies it was just to be myself and take each day as it came because, then again, you may look like fake and there are a lot of brilliant people watching you and they can smell a fake person from afar. 

Teddy A, Leo, Anto, Ahneeka, Ifunada were strong in the house

If anyone was classified like a strong competition, then these guys were the ones I had. I felt like Leo and I were very similar in the way we think and I felt part of myself in him. And in the house, he said the same and we are kind of alike. Teddy was the cool guy that everyone thought was proud, but up close, he wasn’t, he was someone you could talk to. Ahneeka and Ifunada have amazing minds so you would be shocked what they know. Most guys these days are scared of babes who know their stuff and they shy away from them, but they are very brilliant people. Anto is another amazing woman and she is mentally attractive, and I felt if there was any last woman standing, then she should be the one. 

I am a very blunt person

I don’t know how to mince words and if I want to say you messed up I would tell you that, and if I want to say you should act right I would say that too. I feel that way, but people perceived it differently and they would say because Lolu knows so much, they perceive him as a threat. But for me though, I didn’t think I was a threat. I just felt that if I was in a position to help anybody at a particular point in time, I should do it and if it’s perceived as a threat, then know that’s not the idea of the conversation. 

Anto and I like each other but there is no love affair

Anto and I talk about work and we support each other in every way. We are even about to get on the road together, we support each other and there is no affair yet. If it happens I would let you guys know. Immediately she was evicted and came back to the house, I knew she had like a plethora of information. So I realised there had to be a conversation at a point in time but I don’t think it changed the game, it was just another Big Brother element we didn’t see coming. We have moved on from that like any other person would in life. 

People have accused me of being quiet

But I think it’s just me being me at the end of the day. I have been working on my YouTube series which have premiered already. It’s called Chronicles of Lolu and it’s just me talking about social issues, personal issues, entertainment and a bit of everything. Also, I’m thinking of collaborating with international bodies for skills acquisition for youths and not just for the Nigerian youths but Africa’s as well. They have a lot to offer and we need to put them in a place to be successful. I’m also speaking to corporate bodies too in terms of me representing their brand or me being behind an initiative they want to push. Also, I’m thinking of going back to school and, yes, I’m looking at movie roles too, but not something I’m going to do long term so I won’t say no to the scripts. I will also plan a tour to several universities later on, but I have visited a few places so far. 

The goal is politics at the end of the day

I feel youths have a very important role to play in the future of the country, and investing in the youths today will one way or another help secure the tomorrow of the youths. 

The recently passed bill of Not Too Young to Run was positive and the government’s thinking of involving the youths in politics is really good. It also shows that Nigerian youths have a future, as a lot of them are refusing to go to school because they believe nothing can be done in terms of them contributing to the country.

 Right now, I know I have a voice and platform but I don’t think it’s big enough for a place in government but I feel it’s good enough for an advisory role. Eventually, it’s what I do today that will better place me in government position tomorrow. 

I’m a very selfless person

Particularly widows and kids are very close to my heart, because when my mother died we gave all of her stuff to widows and that has stayed with me for a very long time. In any case, when I start philanthropy, I would be looking at going into that. 

There are so many people today that don’t have an idea of where their next meal will come from and that saddens me. 

I haven’t slept in a long while

My team is always complaining about that. Fame is supposed to improve your life and not change who you are, it’s supposed to improve you. So, the same guy before the show is the same guy after the show. I still eat amala in bukkas and people still recognise me. The game has improved my life and it’s something I would get used to. 

Lolu is very single

I’m not in a relationship and as soon as I get into a relationship, the media always have a way of finding out. You would add one and two together, but I feel like when I get into a relationship I’m going to find a way to say it so that those who get the message get the message.