By Ogbonna Amadi, Entertainment Editor and Lolade Sowoolu
She was crowned Miss Nigeria a few minutes before her nineteenth birthday. Lagos born Oluwadamilola Agbajor is the only child of her parents who hail from the Itsekiri part of Delta State.
She attended Federal Government College, Odogbolu and is currently in her second year at the University of Lagos studying Mass Communication. She speaks on her excitement as emerging Queen at her first attempt at modeling.
Do you recall the questions you were asked during the pageant?
I was asked just two questions. The first was at the Top 10 stage. I was asked what my strength and weaknesses were. At Top 5, I was asked what Nigeria has achieved and failed to achieve in its 50 years of existence.
So what are your strengths and weaknesses.
My ability to think on the spot. You can’t catch me by surprise; I always have what to say. And I’m very loyal. My weaknesses would be chocolate, cakes and dresses.
You love chocolate and cakes yet you manage to keep this stature? How?
Yes, I’m only 19 and I’ve never had to watch my weight before.
Would you be willing to die for this country?
For a good cause, yes. For example, If I have to give my life for corruption to leave and for the country to have good leaders, I would.
Is this your first pageant?
Yes, it is.
What made you decide to participate?
It was different. Before now, I was indifferent about all pageants even though my friends advised I tried one out because of my height. For this one (Miss Nigeria), it just seemed so right trying. A friend sent me a text message to checkout the Miss Nigeria website.
I did and saw that there wasn’t going to be a swim wear section and the winner gets to called Queen Ambassador and work with the Federal Republic of Nigeria. It just had the things I wanted. I’m planning to do my Masters in International Relations. I want to be an ambassador.
And so it was like a platform to do all I’ve always wanted to do.
And how did the competition go behind closed doors?
My other contestants were all potential Miss Nigeria too. They were very brainy and smart. We had doctors, lawyers, first class graduates and all. I was challenged but I was hoping for the best.
I prayed to make it to Top 10 and my prayer was answered.
What number were you in the Top 10 and what state of mind were you before your name was called?
I was the last. When they called No. 9, I actually thought she was the 10th and I was about leaving stage. Then I heard Agbani Darego make the last person introduction which turned out to be me because I was Miss Photogenic too. When they called No. 9 and I though it was 10, I began to think, ‘maybe this wasn’t for me. Maybe it’s not God’s plan for me to win.’
What do you think stood you out from others?
I can’t really say. Truthfully, I thought most of them were better than me. By the time I made it to Top 3 it didn’t matter to me anymore if I won or not. I was so proud of myself and was happy already and I knew my family members and friends felt same way too.
And when you won?
I wasn’t excited initially. I was just perplexed because I was shocked. Few minutes later when I had to say something, that was when it dawned on me that I had won.
Who was the first person you called?
What about dad?
My mum actually called me to pray for me and wish me a Happy Birthday because it was my birthday. I was crowned at about 11 p.m. and by 12 a.m. it was my 19th birthday.
Did you ever imagine clocking 19 on a platform like this and with all these benefits?
No, even though I’d always prayed for something like this to happen.
How did the conversation with your mum go?
After the birthday wishes and prayer, I broke the news to her and she just started singing till the line went off. Before I knew what was happening, my family members started calling me…
How does winning a car at 19 make you feel?
It’s like a dream come true because I wanted a car this year and I got one a few minutes before I was 19.
How were you received at home after you won?
I called my family members that I was coming home from Abuja and my grant parents came around to the house. When I got home, they screamed, congratulations! They were all really happy for me.
So have you been relieved of doing house chores because you’re now a beauty queen?
Not exactly. I still cook.
And your friends….
They were really happy because it was one of them who told me about the pageant and they called to encourage me throughout. My mum encouraged and prayed for me too.
How did your boyfriend feel about the news?
I don’t have a boyfriend.
Are you a virgin?
So how has it been with the men since you won?
Every man I’ve met, I’ve treated with respect.
How is the country going to benefit from your being Miss Nigeria? Is there going to be any pet project?
I intend reaching out to people through my pet project. I’ll have Youth Centres across the country where sporting and vocational activities will go on. Places one can visit during leisure or holidays. It’s an avenue to keep people off the street and busy.
Growing up in Nigeria was quite boring for me because if you’re not from a wealthy family that can afford travelling during the holidays, there weren’t really other fun alternatives.
How do you intend to facilitate this?
With the help of the government and the Miss Nigeria team.