Ravishingly beautiful actress and entrepreneur, Shirley Ogechi Igwe is the Principal Protocol Officer to the Imo state Governor, Owelle Anayo Rochas Okorocha.
A plum job the super model and many times Face of Delta Soap/Orange Drug has admitted is obviously a blessing from God Almighty.
Just back from a vacation in the United States of America and a study leave in South Africa, the Faze Book star, in this exclusive interview with ENCOMIUM Weekly on Thursday, April 16, 2014 (at Four Points By Sheraton, Victoria Island, Lagos) talked about her work, some needless misconceptions about her person, business, love life, among others.
You just returned from your annual vacation, hope you had fun? Where did you go?
I was in US for a couple of days. I was also in South Africa for a course that lasted for months. My US trip was fun but SA was more of study. I fell in love with aviation there.
When are you resuming work?
I’ve resumed work.
How is life as Governor Rochas Okorocha’s Principal Protocol Officer?
It has been very rewarding.
Has the job changed you in any special way and what is your typical day like at Government House?
My timing changed drastically. I’m now more punctual than ever before. More values has also been added to my life. I see life from an entirely different perspective.
I see myself helping more than getting helped out. More people look up to me now. I’ve become a role model I’ve always wanted to be. A lot has really changed. I have also been involved in a lot of charity I don’t want to make public.
I always tell my friends and those that love to listen that this job is a blessing from God. And that is the truth.
What is your reaction to a recent publication in a blog claiming you replaced your senior Nollywood colleague, Nkiru Sylvanus in Okorocha’s “Kitchen Cabinet”?
That is a lie from the pit of hell. When I see these write ups, I ask myself if it is really me these people write about. I get confused. May be, there’s someone answering or using my name. Frankly speaking, there’s no such thing as “place and replacement”.
Whoever started that story is evil. In as much as you want to sell your blog, you don’t plot evil write up about people you know nothing about. The lady in question is my senior colleague in Nollywood and in government. I don’t understand that wicked and senseless allegation.
How would you describe your relationship with her right now?
I know her as a Nollywood actress and still do. We have not worked together. There has not been any relationship before and now.
A lot of people think you no longer act due to the pressure of your new job?
Yes, I have really slowed down. There’s no way you can handle the two. They are very different. I don’t lie to myself. I will surely come back fully for my fans and for the love of the job. And yeah, I found new love in aviation!
But you certainly miss acting and your fans?
I sure miss my fans. But they have to show understanding now I’m serving my fatherland.
Would you consider producing your own movie someday?
Yes. Definitely, Yes. I’m an aspiring film producer.
It is also being rumoured that your business has been suffering since you started working with the Imo State Government?
Oh, not really, I’m trying my best to make it stand firm with or without me there. Shirlz Mega Concepts is doing very well.
Is it not quite amazing how you juggle job, business, acting and private life?
It’s been hectic. I have to be in charge, be more mature and multitasking is involved.
How does it feel to be rated one of the top 10 beautiful actresses in Nollywood?
Awesome! Great. I’m glad to be so recognised, especially when it’s coming from the number one celebrity journal in Nigeria (ENCOMIUM Weekly).
A pretty lady like you and a successful one at that should have been “taken” by now. What’s your relationship status?
(Laugh) I’m very much single.
Would you say you have been lucky in your relationships, so far?
No, I’ve not been lucky but I give God all the glory.
Is the wedding bell tolling soon?
As my name says, God’s time is the best (Oge chi ka nma).
What is your ultimate dream?
I dream very big. And I dream big for Nigeria, too. If I tell you, you might think it’s insane. So, I won’t. If I must, you have to book days because it’s long and very deep. (laughs).
– UCHE OLEHI