Waje, the amiable singer with the powerful and melodious voice recently visited Genevieve and opened up about the joy that comes from doing what she loves. She talked about being bullied on social media, life as a single mother, dating and lots more.
On how she trended for the wrong reasons, Waje said: 'That was after my performance at the Guinness Colourful world event in October 2013. I trended on twitter but not for the right reasons. I did not trend because of my performance, instead I trended because people were uncomfortable with my body size. They had an opinion about how I looked. The things people were comparing me to were hideous. Someone took a picture of a remote control and said I looked like that. That made me say to myself, ‘you know what Waje, music isn’t for you’. I had come out with an album, but when that happened, I said you know what, I can’t deal with this. I cried for hours that day at Eko Hotel. And interestingly, I started feeling the way they said I looked. So, I started drinking. I became bitter. I told myself I’m done with music. I’m going to find something else to do. I didn’t eat for days. I became angry with every family member who came to talk to me. I had no reasons to smile or be happy and decided to sign out of all my social media accounts."
On Gender and equal opportunity bill: "The core problem we have in this country is knowledge. So, a lot of people misunderstand the reason behind the things we do. A lot of people believe asking for gender equality means trying to lord it over men or struggling with men. But a lot of successful women understand how difficult it is to succeed in any economic endeavor in this male dominated world. That is why they speak and make demands that will make it easier for other women to succeed in their economic endeavours too, even with the peculiarities of feminity. I believe that poverty is sexist and the only way we can eradicate poverty is by creating opportunities for women. My core passion is in the education of girls. When we start with education we are making sure that people have the ability to ask the right questions, approach issues from the position of strength and make the right decision. Most times the problem women have is information; you hear a woman say I know that the reason he beats me is because he loves me. That is why I came up with my African Woman platform where I can invest in the young African woman by sending her to school. If women themselves can start helping each other then we’ll be better for it. For instance, a neighbor who hears her fellow woman going through domestic abuse can do something about it by reporting to the police! We have women in the police, don’t we?"
Life as a singe mother: "I’m a mother (pronounced, murder) but I know where to draw the line. It is because I don’t want her to make the same mistakes I made. I feel like some of the decisions I made was because I was raised differently. Our parents taught us what they knew as the truth, but what you know as the truth might not be the truth. Another thing is that parents do not tell their children why certain behaviours should be avoided. For example, parents say,“don’t drink because I said so” not,“don’t drink because it is bad for your health”. But I’m learning that for the children of this age, you have to tell them all the reasons why they should not do certain things. While my daughter was growing up, I took up the reward method; you do good, you get good. There was a consequence for every action."
On dating:"Yes I’ve been dating. And there’s definitely a difference. One, you can never come to my house. I’ll never introduce you to my daughter. Because you don’t want to bring up a child in an environment where she thinks that it is okay to have men come in and go out of your life. So it’s a rule. I don’t care how close you are to me, you can’t come to my house. After her father, since I started dating, my daughter has only seen one person and after that person she’s never met another person again. But I try and give her a father figure. So I create role models around her. I’ll have her go and spend time with my pastor’s family so she can have a “family” orientation."
On really happened between she and her baby-daddy? 'Well, he wasn’t ready. I was young. He was young. Our relationship now is very cordial. We respect each other."
Has he always been a part of her life?
He wasn’t until recently. He met her last year. When she was quite young he showed interest but my fear was that he won’t be consistent. I didn’t want a situation where he would come in this year and leave the next. So I had to wait till I was sure that he would be there.