By Damilola Fatunmise
She became a household name in the movie industry after her role in Baba No Regret.
Aside being an actor cum producer, Kudirat Ogunro is also an entrepreneur and author of recently launched book, “Kudi Alagbo: An Egba Warrior With Herbal Powers”.
Ogunro, who has featured in over 50 movies, in this interview narrated her rough and rosy experiences that have shaped her life and career.
Your book launch came as a surprise. People expected you to premiere a movie rather than launch a book. Why did you switch from being a movie producer to an author?
I will say it’s a mandate! I have always had it in mind that one day I will share my life story for the world to read. I know the best channel is to put it into writing so I can make it available to the young ones in both primary and secondary schools, to shape their ways of life.
So, the book is about your life history?
Yes! Though, not in details, I plan to shoot a movie around the storyline very soon.
How did you come about the title, Kudi Alagbo: An Egba Warrior With Herbal Powers?
It’s all about my beginning, my race, and my journey. I was born into a family where all they do is herbs. As a child, when others were taking tea in the morning, we were taking hot, bitter herbs; and that made it a part of me since childhood.
As an actor, don’t you think some people would think you are fetish for dabbling into that kind of business?
Well, I do other things aside herbs. I used to have a very big salon around Ogba in Lagos, but I decided to close it down because it’s the wig era. Most people now find it difficult to sit in the salon to make hair, so they rock wigs. We have different types of wigs: braided, long and short hair, and even Ghana weaving wig; so there’s no hairstyle you want that doesn’t exist as wig. So, I now do wigging on request. Coming back to the question of being fetish, it’s their own to believe whatever they choose to believe about me. I am a Muslim nurtured by a Christian mother, and I so much believe in my root as well. So, you can refer to me as three-in-one when it comes to religion.
What’s the greatest lesson you have learnt in life that kept you going?
The greatest lesson I have learnt is believing in me, right from the beginning. Though, I didn’t attend higher institution, I can boldly say I am brainy and smarter than some people who went to the best of schools. I have learnt not to give up on my dreams, and I am always following due process because nothing in this world is automatic.
So, you never attended any higher institution and you speak and write so well?
I later went to National Open University but that was a few years back.
How have you been coping as a single mum and what advice do you have for single mothers out there?
It has not been easy. If I say it’s been easy, I am a big liar. If I begin to reflect on my life journey right now, I will be so teary. Is it when my baby was just a few weeks old and I would back her and hawk ewedu (vegetables) or when I was a dish washer in one amala joint in Yaba, in order to have two meals per day? Or is it when my mother sent me out of the house, and my daughter and I had to put up with my friends, who were seven already in a small room? But I thank God for his strength and how I have been able to pull through with hard work and determination.
You know, single mothers are actually not the same. There are some that are collecting allowances from there baby daddies, while some are widows left with some property or help from their husbands’ families. My own case is totally different because I have a baby daddy but he’s not responsible at all. So, my advice to single mothers out there is: discover yourself early enough, be smart and be hardworking.
With your experience, have you sealed your heart against marriage or why are you still single?
Chai! This particular question hits me so hard. Hmmm… you see, this my heart has been stitched severely, meaning I have had a lot of disappointments in relationship. But I am someone who loves to love and I won’t say I will never give love a chance again. I am open to marriage but this time around, I will look very well before I leap.
Like how many movies have you featured in?
I have lost count already. But I will say it’s more than 50.
What’s the title of the movie that brought you into the limelight?
It’s Baba No Regret that gave me a face in the industry and made a way for people to start inviting me for movie jobs.
So, what movie are you working on at the moment?
I have three major movie projects coming soon. I am only taking my time so I can deliver the best. You know, this book launch took a lot from me and I am still on the project. My main aim is to go to primary and secondary schools to distribute the book to the young ones, who really need to learn from my story, and after we are settled with that, we’ll hit locations.
If you are not on location shooting movies or doing business, how else do you spend your time?
I love to travel a lot. I derive satisfaction from knowing new places.
What’s your opinion about sex for role in the movie industry?
They talk about it a lot, but for the past 16 years that I have been in the movie industry, I have never experienced it.
Is there any ailment you can’t treat with herbs?
What I do is more like ‘trado-medical’. I was trained under the Ministry of Health Traditional Medicine Board, Lagos State, and all my products are NAFDAC approved. But like I always say, we care but God cures. To the glory of God, there’s nothing we can’t treat with herbs, but if I am not led, I won’t proceed with it.
What’s your best selling herb?
They are mostly sex enhancement products for male with weak or no erection, and ladies with no or low libido. We have the best products that will fast track you into action.