Rita Onome Eghujovbo popularly known as Queen Rita is a broadcast journalist, marketing communication consultant, event compere (MC) and an author. In this interview with STELLAMARIES AMUWA, she harps on the need for networking and knowledge sharing in any sectors.
What inspired your interest in journalism?
The desire to make an impact. I saw broadcasting as a means through which I can touch lives, raise issues that affect people and bring about change. When I thought of journalism/broadcasting, radio was the last thing on my mind. I wanted to be on the television. Well, as God will have it, radio happened. I have enjoyed every bit of it so far. However, I still do TV simulators when I find the time. So, you can call me a multimedia journalist.
Recently, you launched a book, ‘Queen Rita’ from the rough edges to becoming the queen. Tell us about the book?
I am super excited about the book and really pleased with the feedback so far. Queen Rita- from the rough edges to becoming the Queen is a memoir. It chronicles ‘Some of Me’.
I have been opportune to speak at events where I say one or two things about my past and how I started my journey. The feedback I got made me want to write it down. Like I said, the feedback has been amazing.
Is Queen Rita your first book and how soon should we expect another book launch?
Yes, it’s my first book. For the next one… you never can tell. I did not think I could do this three years ago. Much as I wanted to, but here we are. The next might be a collection of stories. I hear writing is addictive. So, let’s just wait and watch. Besides, my first book is barely a month now. The next one might be this year or next year.
How do you combine work and family, and at the same time balance both?
We find a way to plan and allot time to the things we have to do. Having the right support system helps too. I am blessed with an amazing and supportive husband. We just need to realise that no one is super human really. My children are all teenagers now, so it’s a lot easier than when they were toddlers. It comes in stages but God has really helped me to get it right so far.
If you were not a journalist, what else would you have been?
I would be a lecturer. I love to share knowledge. Leading tutorials is something I enjoy doing while in school. Mind you, I said lecturing not teaching (primary or secondary school students). I feel they are different.
No regrets. Whatever God allows to happen is for a reason. Everything I have gone through in life has shaped and moulded me into the woman I am today. I am thankful for my ‘rough edges ‘.
What are your fondest childhood memories?
The days I spent with one of my relatives, Aunt Pat. Also, planting flowers and listening to country songs. I remember fondly the days I spent with my grandmother, Comfort, she shaped my business skills.
Who is your mentor?
I have mentors close and far like Comfort Okoronkwo, Chris Anyanwu, Dayo Benjamins-Laniyi and
Ejiro Otive-Igbuzor. I am also inspired by the likes of Opray Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres and among others.
What does fashion and style mean to you?
For me, Fashion is comfort. I wear what I am comfortable in. For instance, heels might be trendy but they are not my comfort zone.
What’s your take on the new normal, sticking to facemask and at same time staying fashionable?
Well, we do not exactly have a choice for now. So, everyone has to adapt. As for fashionable face masks, they come in all shades and shapes. Personally, I use disposables a lot. But I have a few ankara ones, some branded from work to create uniformity while ensuring safety. I have seen and love some really fashionable masks with stones.
To be fashionable with it is not so easy because, now, we need face masks to match what we are wearing. So far so good, I cannot wait for this to be over.
What’s your greatest challenge when it comes to measuring up with your professional colleagues?
I am not necessarily measuring up to anyone. I learn how to do my job better every day. Networking and sharing knowledge are important in any sector. Self-development is also very important if you want to stay relevant in your chosen career. I know this, so I am constantly working on me, pushing the bar and looking for ways to do it better.
What makes you happy and sweeps you off your feet?
My peace of mind. My family is my happy place. Being able to help others gives me an indescribable happiness. The feeling is pricely. Achieving a goal also gives me joy.
Tell us a little about your family?
My family is home. I am married to an amazing guy, Dr. Simeon Eghujovbo. We are blessed with three wonderful children to the glory of God.
How do you unwind?
I love to travel; I have not done much of that lately, thanks to COVID-19. I love to hang out with my friends too. Most importantly, quality family time. My children will often pick a movie, come up with recipes and prepare them for everybody in the house.
What genre of music do you listen to and why?
I listen to all kinds of music. But I was influenced by country songs early in life, thanks to Auntie Pat. She was my foster parent at some point. I love soft rock, gospel and general music that makes sense. Not nonsense syllables (there are lots of them now). While I still host full shifts on radio, my music taste buds had to adjust to the station’s house style. So, because of the nature of my job, I listen and enjoy a variety of genres like country, soft rock, R and B, among others.
What is your highest point and where do you hope to be in the nearest future?
There have been a couple of highs for me. I hope to write more books, grow my brand and do greater things. Just watch!
What is your advice to Nigerian youths especially at this trying period?
They should be patient because success is not noodles that will take two minutes to cook. They should be strategic and innovative, while looking out for opportunities and take them. The youths should seek knowledge because knowledge is king. They should identify people that are doing what they aspire to do and learn from them. Mentorship is priceless.
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