Benita Nzeribe started out as a teen star in Nollywood and later grew into adulthood long before the industry started experiencing the boom it now enjoys. Though quick to say she got into the industry by accident, the light-complexioned beau has carved a niche for herself. That is why her endorsement as Ambassador for two separate institutions is not a surprise. In this interview, she talks about her career, endorsements and refutes the rumour making the rounds that she has a love child.
It seems your love for acting has vanished ?
How do you mean ? I’m still and will remain an actress.
But you’ve been away from the big screen for some time now. What have you been up to ?
I was really not away . One thing about entertainment is that no one ever leaves it . I have been around and I’m active. I do jobs that come my way but I am a very patient person and not swayed at all . I have not been away from the big screen. I just have a different project and responsibility on my shoulders and I’m moving on by the grace of God .
What are some of those projects you’re currently handling ?
As you very well know, I am a UN Peace Ambassador and as such stand for world peace . Ambassadors work towards peace from the grassroots. Personally, I am more convinced than ever before that there should be peace in the inner mind of every human being created by God. Sadly, not every human being has been able to discover that inner mind and access the peace that is much needed for its growth and development for success .
World peace is still a tall order in our world today. However, nothing is impossible with God . I shall continue to call on Him for strength and direction as I pursue this awesome assignment. World peace must be achieved to an impressive percentage .
Secondly, as the Air Safety Ambassador of Nigeria which was bestowed on me by the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), there is also a job to do . The aviation sector has recorded huge achievements under this present administration . Furthermore, I will be on location in less than two weeks from now for the shoot of their international classic TV commercial, It’s a big project; I can tell you that .
Also, I am presently recording the Malta Guinness Low Sugar Game show with Emeka Enyiocha as my co- presenter . It’s hitting the screen soon and I can tell you, it’s going to be a great show . I will be on location immediately after the NAMA TVC and thereafter, I will embark on an official trip out of the country as NAMA Ambassador .
How did you secure all these deals?
Well, let’s say that it’s God at work and the fruits of my labour as an actress
On the UN Ambassadorship, I was called upon to come and receive it. The fact that I grew from a teenager to an adult in Nollywood and have contributed to the growth of the industry and written my name in gold opened those doors for me .
So you must be swimming in money now ?.
Swimming in money? Hmm. Well, I have always believed in sacrifice first before reaping, and that has worked out well for me. God has been putting smiles on my face little by little. I must appreciate Him for that. But swimming in money? Not yet.
So what was growing up like for you?
Growing up was fun because I have disciplined parents. I went to a Convent school and I think that explains how I came about my disciplined self.
Could you share with us some of those boring experiences you had while growing?
All I can remember is that all the partying that has to do with teens was never part of my experience. But I guess, it helped me to keep disciplined till date.
Do you regret not being allowed to enjoy your childhood days?
I don’t feel like I missed out at all. In fact, it’s rare to see me in a night club because I have been fashioned that way. It’s not like I’m saying it’s wrong to party, everyone should just do whatever makes them happy.
Since you attended a Convent school, how did you come about acting?
My getting into acting was never planned. My debut role in ‘Beyond Our Dreams’ was just meant to be.
So, acting was an accidental thing for you. What were you doing before acting?
*Benita at an event
I was in school then. So, my girlfriend and I came to Lagos for holidays in my elder brother’s house, Hon.Chuma Nzeribe. One day, we decided to just stroll around for sight seeing and we stumbled on an audition for a soap. We wanted to just see what they were up to and why so many people gathered there. It was curiosity and one thing led to another. I was called upon to be tried because they were actually searching for that character of a female lead. I was auditioned and the rest is history.
I heard you wanted to be a Reverend Sister?
That’s not true. I just went to a Convent school because my father believed there is more discipline and a better quality of education there. I didn’t attend the school because I was aspiring to be a Reverend Sister.
So, weren’t your parents disappointed that you chose acting after the discipline and values instilled in you at the Convent school?
There was nothing to feel disappointed about. It’s a profession just like every other one. My parents are educated so they understood that I was doing my job. I have my limits as an African woman.
What are your limits?
I can never go nakéd!
I overheard you calling someone ‘Daddy’ on the phone?
Ha! that was my father in the Lord, my pastor.
So, who is the lucky man?
Soon, you will find out.
Does that mean there’s a man in your life?
I’m sure you don’t expect me to have a woman in my life. Well, it’s not yet ripe to talk about that for now. But I’ll surely inform you at the right time.
How’s your daughter doing?
My daughter? Which daughter? Where is the daughter and from whom? This is really funny, and the first time ever a journalist will be asking me about a daughter. I have none for now but will definitely get one once I’m married. Don’t be in a hurry.
But we learnt that you’re a single mother
Wow! I’m not, please. That’s definitely not true. Why would I hide my blood from anyone if I had a daughter? Children are blessings from God so I would flaunt her to the world if I did. Relax, I will soon get there by God’s Grace. People saying that should take a chill pill and wait.