- Hajia MONILOLA CHERIFATH LAWAL
Hajjia Monilola Cherifath Lawal, is the daughter of Hajjia Risikath Abeni Youssouf, the fashionable and big business woman who sells cosmetic products and materials of construction in Abidjan.
Hajjia Riskath Abeni Youssouf is the woman who many celebrities run to for sponsorship of their events. She has been the one behind bringing many Nigerian artists to Abidjan. These are people like Taiye Currency, a fuji musician, Hajjia Basirat Ogunremi (Iya Ghana), an Islamic singer, and Hajjia Akiki among many others.
Hajjia Risikiath is also the backbone of so many clubs and Islamic groups, home and abroad. She recently got back from one of her business trips to China and she is embarking on yet another one very soon.
Hajjia Risikath Youssouf popularly called (Iya Ajase) has trainned so many in her line of business. She will be hosting City People Media Group live in Abidjan next year February. Last week, one of City People’s Contributing Reporter NIFE KAZEEM visited her in one of her homes in Abidjan and she told her daughter, Hajjia Monilola Cherifath to do the talking. They also spoke about why they are hosting City People Magazine in ABIDJAN.
Who is Hajjia Risikath Abeni Youssouf? Why is her name on the lips of so many celebrities?
She’s my mum. My mother is an extra ordinary woman, who doesn’t take no for an answer. She does a lot of extra ordinary things. Very kind woman, I call her great woman of accomplishment, who I will love to choose over and over again in my next world.
Is she a native of Abidjan?
I can say Yes to that because when you have the whole of your life built in a country, that makes you a citizen. But we are from Nigeria.
Her group of businesses have grown fast and she is the major distributor for so many products here.
It is just by God’s doing. She has been doing the business since her youthful age, and up to this moment it takes a lot of hardwork and consistency. She imports most of her products from overseas, and when people know you for the best they always come for you without even thinking twice, she has gotten so many endorsements so far.
How do you feel having her as your mother?
God!!! Am so honoured, I am so blessed to have her as my mum.
Now let’s talk about your life as her daughter?
I am Hajjia Monilola Cherifath Lawal, I am also into business like her too, because I was born and brought up from it. I started doing it professionally 6-years now.
Were you born here?
No. I was born and raised up in Port Novo Cotonu Republic of Benin. I attended Irede Primary School Benin, then Poseite Cite Vie Nouvelle secondary school, Benin, I went to Gaza formation Bon Berger University Benin I later moved to Accra for my Masters in Banking and Finance.
Are you married?
No. But I am engaged for now. I will be getting married soon, Insha Allah.
As a Masters graduate in Banking and Finance, don’t you think you should be in banking?
I once gave it a thought. Banking needs all of one’s attention and your time and I am into so many things, that also need my time as well, like I said I was born and brought up into business and I have been doing it since when I was small, I’ve been running my own business too. When I was little, before I decided to take it up as a profession 6 years ago, I wanted to be in a banking Hall, that is what I had passion for but if I think of what I make from my daily business, which I know I can’t get it from being a banker in a month. I would start thinking of business again.
So are you planning on going back to it later in future?
Yes! I will just like to be a solicitor.
Who are your friends that rock the Repblic of Benin with you?
After Allah, my mum… She’s the big tree under which I stand. Of course, I have lots of them. Hajjia Soliath Chados (PIO), Hajjia Zirath Moutairou Fagbemi, Hajjia Hadjarath Gbadamassi Bakary. Hajjia Kifayath Lassissi, Kossoko. They are doing well in their businesses too.
Are you an Hajjia?
Insha Allah; yes. I performed the last Haji 2017 which is the most current Hajia.
Am into baby items and ladies fashion, home and abroad. I go in and out of the country just like my mum.
Are you into politics or any club?
Politics! Not my game, I hate it with a passion, not even with the way our leaders rule us. I can’t do it, I rule my world club, Yes. Am a member of Administration and the Treasurer of Islamic Club Hasbounalah world wide.
Tell us about your background and your upbringing?
Well, I was born into a polygamous family. My mum is the first wife, and we are just 2 kids she has. I am the first child with my kid sister Hajjia Wuraola. She performed the Haji with our mum when she was still little, she’s always happy when you address her as Hajjia.
(Smile!!!) She’s still in secondary school, growing up was fun, being around those people who love you and who are always ready to support you.
What kind of person are you?
I can’t describe myself, but people used to say that I am a very rare person because I fear Allah in everything I do and in every situations but I know am fun to be with and very friendly.
Talking about your mum hosting City People in Abidjan what do you think about it?
Yeah! City People deserves it. They have been celebrating people far and near. We love what they are doing, we really appreciate them.
We just want to show some love, that people of Abidjan love their work, it is going to be an amazing event, we really want it to be talk of the town for a long time to come.