In this video which has gone viral, Omawumi, the popular Nigerian female singer, featured in an interview. But the interview went south and escalated quickly. The interviewer asked her about her rumored smoking, weed, and alcohol habits which she didn’t take lightly. She threw some jab counterattacks at the interviewer and walked out. Everybody went online to condemn Omawumi accusing her of being mannerless, discourteous, and suspicious.
But I disagree. She did exactly the right thing. The interview is another instance of junk journalism. You have a right to ask someone about a rumor. But when you ask someone a question like: ‘You’re a mother and there’s a rumor of you being a smoker and alcoholic. Don’t you think these vices can affect your kids negatively?’, then you’re not trying to confirm a rumor. You’ve accepted it as truth and you’re pushing it on the interviewee. That’s plain dumb hateful! Why bring her kids into the discussion? Knowing that she’s a respectable mother, why try to spite her motherhood?
And the other aspect is the gender issue involved. Could she have asked Olamide or Don Jazzy the same question? Or aren’t there plain rumors that those ones do drugs too? This is a culture that’s against the female gender succeeding in a male-dominated world. If we want our women to succeed, we should cut them some slack. Omawumi is a respectable mother who has been going about her normal business. She doesn’t need any misogynistic negativity in her life.
This is why I like what she did. One of the ways to succeed in life is to reject any attempt by anybody to throw any negativity in your way. Don’t even let them start. Don’t even give them an inch. Some people are just out to take your joy away. Look them in the face, tell them to go to hell, and then walk away.
This is an interview that Omawumi granted to promote herself. Her PR consultant should’ve sat down with the media outfit conducting the interview on what questions to be asked and those not to be asked. If the interviewer goes outside the scope of the interview, the interviewee has a right to walk out. There’s a difference between an interview and a criminal investigation. If you invited someone for a promotional interview, don’t turn it to an interrogation. And that the interviewer herself is a woman is worrisome. How could she think of doing that to her fellow woman? I know the hustle to get clicks is real but not at the expense of someone else’s image.
What Omawumi has done here is similar to what R. Kelly did on the interviewer on the Huffington post TV interview. In fact, it looks like Omawumi saw R. Kelly’s interview before doing this one. The similarity is too striking. On the famous interview, a similar question was asked R. Kelly and almost similar verbatim words were used by R. Kelly before similarly walking out on the interview. Watch it here. By the way, a few other artistes have done the same thing. For me, Zinnia, the interviewer in Omawumi’s case, is too mischievous to be taken seriously. Thanks.