•Details Of Her Explosive Interview
Kemi Olunloyo is a popular Journalist and Blogger. She is many things rolled into one. She is a P.R. Expert, and a Pharmacist who has garnered experiences and knowledge from both American and Canadian universities. She is the daughter of former Oyo State Governor, Chief Victor Omololu Olunloyo and the second of 10 children. She lived 14 years in Nigeria, 20 years in the United States, and 5 years in Canada before relocating to Nigeria. A few days back, she spoke with City People Publisher, SEYE KEHINDE about her life. Below are excerpts of the interview.
Kemi Olunloyo has become a big brand globally. How did you build the brand into what it is today? How does it make you feel?
Good morning Seye Kehinde. I really built up my brand in a very tough way. There were critics. There were people who didn’t want me talking. There were people who thought I talk a lot but KemiTalks is what is now what I now name my brand. I started my brand as HNN Africa when I came back from Canada and the US. So, I noticed some people want me to talk about something. I noticed some people want me to talk about issues in the news. Some people just wanted me talking. So, I just created KemiTalks. Kemitalks is what I called a social digital media brand. But sadly, I left facebook and Instagram because I decided to join the celebrities who are protesting misinformation and hate. The hate on me on social media was just too much and there was a limit to it; I couldn’t take it anymore. I felt I was doing too much for people, so I don’t want fans anymore. Until facebook corporation does something about it like what Kim Kardashian and other celebrities say; until they do something about hate, I will no longer be on those platforms. There are too much trolling, and a lot of people love me on these platforms, but the unfortunate thing is that the hate and the misinformation were just too much for me. People came up with all kind of stories, my children have abandoned me, my father raped me. All kind of lies they hear from other people because of hate. Many things that didn’t happen, so I just decided to leave them alone. A lot of my lawyer friends are actually upset. So I just told them no more fans, just follow us. A lot of my fans who follow my work can come to Twitter @kemiolunloyo. I have been on Snapchat since 2013 but I haven’t really used it that much, so I’m going to be doing Snapchat and also KemiTalksgist on Youtube.
You are so many things rolled into one. You are an international journalist, a Clinical Pharmacist, PR Specialist and many more. How do you cope?
Being a Pharmacist, a Journalist, a PR Specialist is a lot, but Nigerians don’t appreciate it. When I found out that a First Class degree is really a trophy in Nigeria, I made it known that I had 3 first-class degrees. I graduated from Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science in 1989. I’m a very fast learner because I have a condition called Asperger Syndrome. It’s a form of Autism but a lot of people don’t really know about it here. My brain speed is very fast, and I already come from a family where people are very intelligent and with that been said I do so much information building and letting people know what’s going on.
Being a PR Specialist, Events Planning, Crisis Management, Media from Goucher College School, Maryland, USA. Public Relations Management is very good because I like representing people and I like making people famous. PR is not just making people famous, PR is also about speaking for people.
Also in Public Relations, I represent big artistes like Drake, Whiz Khalifa, Niki Minaj etc. All these guys I planned their PR and Concerts when they came to Canada. There are a lots of artistes who I have worked with. Aside from being a Music Journalist, I’m also a Music Publicist. I became an Investigative Journalist as soon as I graduated in 1994 from the Broadcasting Institute of Maryland, USA.
Right now, I’m teaching Journalism Online at a broadcast school in America. I teach New Media; Digital Media. I go online on Zoom to talk to the students in school in the US.
Many people misunderstand Kemi Olunloyo. You get criticized all the time. They say you are this and that. Who is the real Kemi Olunloyo? What does she stand for? What does she represent?
The people that criticize me are majorly Nigerians and I heard that Nigerians don’t like the truth so I was prepared for that. If you don’t like the truth don’t follow me, so you can see clearly that they want to know the truth that’s why they follow me and they still criticize me, they say bad things about me. Other fans will say why are you criticizing her, why are you saying this and that about her, why are you following her? The real Kemi Olunloyo stands for the truth and nothing but the truth and unfortunately, this whole thing has moved to the government level where the government has never employed me. I have a lot of talents and I counted seventeen parastatals I could be working in the state of the federal government but no. Nobody has hired me because of that truth. According to my dad, he says I’m going to find out where the money is, where they’re stealing it and that truth will let me expose people. So am paying I dearly for not having the jobs I should have, I’ve been overlooked in many sectors and even in the private sectors. Radio stations won’t hire me because they claim that the NBC has said that I am going to criticize the Presidency and they’d shut me down. They’d shut them down for hiring me so Kemi Olunloyo stands for the truth and if you don’t like it the truth hurts.
Why did you go off Instagram and Facebook?
I went off Instagram and Facebook because of Hate and Misinformation and so much more. When you see something written about me and it’s not true why don’t you find out from me? Tokunbo Aboderin said that my father raped me, I had a child for my father. She came back two years later and apologized on live video for what she said. She said that she was angry because of the way that I spoke about Jide Kosoko and all that but you don’t do that because you don’t go make a video and say that oh I’m a relative, her father raped her to get my attention. You don’t do that. You’d not only slandered me but you slandered my father and my whole family even though she’s apologized and I forgave her, that video spread around the internet and also I no longer have a relationship with my mother and my sister partly because of the other thing. A letter was written to Premium Times calling me mentally challenged, calling me a madwoman, saying that my dad doesn’t like what I write on Social Media. Governor Olunloyo denounces his daughter’s post on social media. You can google it is in Premium Times. I’m getting legal advice for it now even though it’s been 4 years ago. That story wasn’t written by my dad. My father did not write to Premium Times. My sister actually told my father to give him a letterhead to get us a meter at NEPA. My father writes us letters to get us services and things in Nigeria and my father signed the letterhead and my sister went ahead and wrote the misinformation on that letterhead and sent it to Premium Times to destroy me. My mother was in that whole thing and got away with it. Every time that I showed my mother the article to read what they’ve written about and what dad said but she’d try to avoid it saying she did not want any bad news not knowing she was behind it. I no longer talk to my mum and my sister and also the armed robbery that happened in our house in Ibadan let me believe it was planned. That’s what the signs and everyone close to that investigation are saying now. I’ve never said this before but I’m telling you now exclusively. So the whole idea of it is so much Hate. People hear that my father called me a mentally challenged person in the Premium Times article and it still goes on and on. A regular post about me on Instablog would say it, Comments oh she’s actually a madwoman after what her father said about her. So there’s so much misinformation and I didn’t want it anymore. Kim Kardashian said that the misinformation was too much than the hate. I hate Biafra because I don’t believe that Nigeria should break up. It came to a point where I’d post something and the Biafrans will just call me names. At the end of the day, it is just post a bottle of water and people will just comment on the bottle of water, Madwoman, Ashawo. It just became a way that the Hate was too much, so I left Facebook and Instagram.
According to Kim Kardashian, maybe when they fix it, they will not boycott it anymore and many other celebrities that joined that campaign. Since I joined that campaign by freezing my account I just decided to delete them. The Facebook company noticed that I deleted two verified accounts with over 600000 reaching 6 million. So they contacted me that if I want that account back, it will be in their server for 12 months. So between now and next year, I have twelve months to claim back my account and come back to Instagram and Facebook and that’s twelve months. So come next September, if you see me logging to those, maybe because I decided to come back, maybe before then. But I doubt it, I’m not interested in those platforms anymore. I’m on YouTube now at YouTube.com@kemigists and I’m also on Twitter at Kemi Olunloyo which is my office now and I will start using Snapchat at Kemi Olunloyo. Other than that I don’t want any more Hate or Misinformation. Clearly, you can see that Twitter has done something about Hate and Misinformation. If you post to hate on twitter, they will block your account, with misinformation same thing. So now the user has a way to stop people from commenting hate so when I post something about Fani Kayode that favours him, they start posting Hate Comments but it doesn’t work like that anymore. Now, when I know they are going to post Hate Comments, I just close the comments. I don’t follow anybody but twitter and so if they can’t come in they can’t comment. You know you don’t need feedback all the time. Before all these comments stuff started how did social media work? You read the Punch and The Next Newspaper and there was no place to comment. A comment is just some form of abuse from people. That’s why I left Facebook and Instagram. I don’t think I’d claim them back. I took what I needed out like pictures so within a year we’d see what happens. Don’t forget Mitchell Obama left Facebook for 3 years. It was too much hate and this is the first lady who had admin running the page for her. She didn’t like it, they called her monkey, pig ears and everything. The Obamas ruled America for 8 years, the last 3 years they did not post anything on Facebook. Same here, the fans did not miss anybody. They call them followers and that’s what they call them on twitter.
How do you see Nigeria at 60? What are your impressions?
I’m coming up with a documentary called 60 Years Of Failure. Nigeria has failed in 60 years. Number one failure reason is that we’ve recycled leaders. We keep educating people and I’m one of the people that educate people and we say stop recycling leaders. The same people are ruling us. Bring in young new faces, young politicians, they might not have experience but they’d get special advisers. Isn’t Donald Trump the president of the United States, no political experience. Doesn’t he have special advisers? Even though his government has been very tumultuous but he’d still win. Sixty Years Of Failure documentary will show how Nigeria has failed altogether and what has made it fail. Even last weekend, when we had Governor Obaseki versus Eze Iyamu. In 2016 wasn’t it Eze Iyamu in PDP and Obaseki in APC? Now they switch parties and we’re still recycling leaders. Do you see what I mean?
You have fought so many battles over the last 5 years. What are the lessons you have learnt?
I’ve fought so many battles in the last 5 years from being to prison for posting a news tape that Pastor Ibiyemi sent to me which I was beginning to investigate and the police didn’t let me so they arrested me. God fought my battles basically. Many people in the case died. The person that prosecuted me, Kennedy Okonkwo, I’m glad I forgave him. He actually died in a plastic surgery that was botched, a very disgraceful death. The Attorney General of River State who also said I was not a Journalist, but a Blogger, that I’m just somebody that hates Men of God that they should prosecute me fully. He also died in his sleep. China, the security guard that always treated me badly on the way to prison and court also died. That didn’t come just as a coincidence. I once cursed somebody in the courtroom and said that three people are going to die in this case for all what you have put me through. I suffered in Port Harcourt prison, arrested three times. I suffered and I believe I have such powers in my words. When I said three people were going to die, three people died. Unfortunately, that’s the way it is. God fought my battles for me. People that treated me bad that I cannot even mention their names in this interview are all dead. Two of them died this year, one of Coronavirus and the other plastic surgery. So I always leave God to fight my battles.
Tell us about your activities on Twitter. Do you seem to like Twitter now?
As I said earlier, I’m going to get my Twitter account reverified because there are a lot of fake accounts out there and people get confused. For example one of the fake accounts said Erica from BBNaija was a slut and a gold digger and people commented on that. Erica’s handlers blocked me and all that but they had no idea that what they were blocking was not my account so I came out and told Twitter. So I’m going to re-verify my account. My verification was removed because I changed my handle. My former handle was HNN Africa verified and for 11 years too but I changed it to @kemiolunloyo because I rebranded. When you change your handle, you lose verification on twitter, so I’m supposed to contact twitter and they would do it back but unfortunately at the time I did it, twitter had already stopped verification in 2017.
They paused it because of what some verified accounts were doing with regards to hate during Trump’s first election. So now probably verification is paused. The area you are supposed to go and re-verify your account the page has been removed. So how do you get in touch with Twitter? You can only twit at them. They told me to send some IDs which I wasn’t able to because my driver’s licence expired because I no longer drive and my passport was with the Italian embassy because I was planning to travel. So I’ve got my passport back so I’d have that verified.
My activities on Twitter are doing what I was doing on Instagram and Facebook. It’s just microblogging. A little less than 200 words. It’s Kemi talks about food, health and anything. I hashtag it according to what it is. So I’m also aggregating news, I’m also doing a lot of work on BBNaija. I have monetised Tweets abilities. So I monetise my tweets on BBNaija eviction show and I tweet BBNaija randomly and I’d be tweeting this weekend for the finale of the show. Aside from tweeting my brand, I also start many new things on twitter. I’m going be doing more posts, opinion, I’m teaching on twitter, Kemi talks education, I’m doing a lot on twitter so I want you guys to follow me @kemiolunloyo on twitter.