Meet Ogo, our Rubies & Potters guest on FamilyRubies today.
Rubies & Potters is a section on our blog where we bring to you great minds doing great things!
We’re taking this time out to celebrate them and showcase them to the world in our own beautiful way.
So join this train, and let’s do this together…..
Good day Ogo…
Where are you originally from?
I’m from Anambra state in Nigeria
Where do you currently reside?
What’s your faith?
When do you celebrate your birthday?
16th of October, yearly
Which school(s) did you attend?
I am a QCOG (Queens College Yaba Lagos ‘proudly repping’, UNILAG, The Ohio State University- Moritz College of Law)
What course did you study in school and would you like to share a bit of your academic progress with us?
LAW! Law!! Law!!! (LLB, LLM, ACIarb (Associate, Chartered institute of arbitrator U.K.) Just recently got served a notice of certification from the New York board of Examiners that I qualify to practice in the State of New York also. 🙂 🙂
What do you do for a living?
Coughs! I’m an advocate in all sense of the word…lol (if you know what I mean)
Err… it was like the only thing in my head growing up. I mean, maybe the first few times I was asked what I wanted to be growing up I said something like model, second time millionaire, LOL!, and third time I said lawyer, and since then its been law. I remember in SS1 when I had to pick my subjects to determine whether I was an arts or science student, in the guidance and counselors’ office my mother told her that I am science inclined because I knew math and got an “A” in integrated science and technical drawing but I told the counselor and my mum I wanted to be a lawyer. Lol! My mum was so sure I would change my mind, so my time table had chemistry, physics, biology, government commerce, literature, all combined. After two(2) weeks I almost collapsed, they had to give me an arts student’s time table. For some reason I think my folks thought art students were not bright. Well of course I had to finish WAEC with A in biology and math to prove myself to them, they would have it no other way. LOL!!
Tell us a memorable day or event in your career?
Hmmm, there are so many of them!
-Co-presenting with Chief Idigbe SAN at a renowned Nigerian Oil and Gas corporate Governance training and I had just joined his firm. OMD!!! I was nervous that I’d mess up but when I was done with the presentation he gave me a lifted brow in approval and his conclusion was like there was nothing to add…it sure felt great!
-Passing the New York bar!!!
-Having to argue in Court with senior lawyers, the tempo in your chest knowing that all you know is just what’s in your process and these lawyers are supposed to be living legends, and hearing your voice come out bold, and boom! (favor!) the judge is on your side! Stepping out of the Court room has your shoulder feeling like its growing… hahahaha but then you step out and see the senior lawyer enter his chauffeur driven G-Wagon with juniors running around with his file and books, while you are struggling with your files and books and bags and walking the long distance to your silver sally (that’s what I call her *coughs*my motor vehicle, by the way I’m not complaining life is in stages!!)
What impact have your parents and siblings had on your career?
My folks are very supportive. For a very long time I practically lived my life for them. They are both first class brains, scholarship riders, my siblings as well. I’m the social one that always wants to talk and make noise and meet people and go for parties and hang out and gist till dawn. So being the first ‘all over the place’ child I had to always catch up, make sure I pass my exams. I was afraid of failing them, I could fail a course and not care if they would never find out but if I had to take that result home I must pass o! and pass to these folks was first class. The struggle was hard, I almost felt like it was never enough. In QC I failed WAEC literature and as a “baddo” I didn’t do it in NECO because I was too sure of myself. *poor you,lol* When my dad got my result he almost disowned me. *Now you can laugh* Back then the struggle was real!
They checked all the courses I could do in University without literature, there was none I wanted, even theatre arts my second preference needed literature. The gods were against me! LOL. My mother called everybody she knew to find out about G.C.E and they found out that it was like in two(2) weeks, they did all they could to make sure I took the exam, I lived in Ikoyi at the time and my center was in one school under the bridge near Ojuelegba or Costain. My dad would drive me there every morning for my paper, they really felt bad for me. My brother and sister had such good results in their time (I am the last child), so I can imagine they had seen no such thing in their entire life. So really it was all about anything to make them happy. When I came home with a 2.2 (second class lower) from UNILAG, I thought they would just say ‘ehen she has finally disgraced us’, but for some reason it was ok, not a word, not a how can?, nothing, it was ok, “you did well”.
Suddenly, I woke up! I told myself that I must get a first class in law school or nothing. All of a sudden I wanted more from life, it was when nobody expected anything from me that I wanted to be something for myself, I started thinking “do the people who have first class or distinctions have two heads?” *You are a typical naija lady Ogo*. I mean that used to be my father’s saying when I was in secondary school *every Nigerian parent said that lol* well, it became a real question in my head. All the way, they were there for me, praying, calling, pushing and when I came out with a 2.1 (second class upper), it was a huge celebration!!! They would get a call from some random person and in between the conversation you will hear my mum say “ehen ee ma na Ogo we 2.1 na law school” lol (meaning, you know Ogo had 2.1 in law school :)) It felt good.
They have always been supportive come rain, come shine, ALWAYS my biggest fans and surest supporters. At least if no one else is rooting for me in the entire world I can be sure that my family will be screaming “Go Ogo!”
Which is your favorite life quote?
He will keep me in perfect peace because my mind is stayed on Him- Isaiah 26:3
Do you have a favorite business quote?
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me….hahaha I even use this on the treadmill lol
What advice do you have for intending female lawyers in Nigeria?
Don’t do it if someone else is forcing you to do it. The pressure is real!!! But it is do-able. It is a lot of hard work, be prepared! and one thing that is sure is that the result for hard work is more work, don’t be fooled by Law & order or C.S.I its not that cool but I love it!!! You just really need to love law to practice it, the passion has to be there, I used to hear it when I first got out of law school, now years down the line it is so true.
Describe the judiciary system in Nigeria as at today in one word
( Titi you don’t tell lawyers to answer a question in one word lol) but…”Developing “ would be my choice word (We laughed hard!!…)
Is there any particular legal practitioner you admire in Nigeria? If yes who would that be?
Many…. of course my boss Chief Anthony Idigbe SAN and Mrs Funke Adekoya SAN (love her), to mention a few
We know you are very much into charity/ working to support the less privileged, what motivates you?
Err God…can only be God. In trying to get to know God more, I would read my bible, pray…attend services, vigils, every time but I still felt this vacuum, so I kept asking the Holy spirit for help and one day that bible verse that says “for I was hungry and you gave me something to eat and I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink and I was a stranger and you invited me in “Then the King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ (Matthew 25, I believe) came alive to me, my heart opens to it. I’m grateful because my heart hasn’t always been opened to being compassionate so I had to nurture this.
Where do you see yourself taking this dream( Charity)?
As God leads. But I’d love to own an orphanage and go to prisons and help out with the word, making the females hair, you know gist with them build relationships, spread some light if I can, teaching them something, open a soup kitchen where the hungry can come in for food, or even a boarding place for people who are homeless to sleep. I know I know I know. The logistics in Nigeria is almost impossible, but impossible is nothing if He leads.
What are your aspirations in the next 5 years?
Have my beautiful family with all my many children. (my friends used to tease me that I will arrange my kids and teach them choreography, I most likely will.) I’ld love to own an orphanage or less privileged home, maybe a soup kitchen. I’ld also love to own a relaxation center and a fashion outfit. (5 years! Yes, I can do ALL things….)
What is your opinion about adopting the less privileged kids in Nigeria?
All for it!! The process is long if done the right way but by all means as far as the adopting parents are safe and good people. The orphanage we support don’t allow singles adopt so I can’t adopt now. They do a three (3) months check on any family that wants to adopt after the very long process with the government. But outside the bureaucracy if I can call it that, please by all means, these kids having an actual home is the best thing that can happen. We still pray they are happy in their homes and not abused but being afraid of the unknown hasn’t done anything for anyone. We just know its better to grow up in a family with mummy and daddy. Of course we appreciate the caretakers for all they do. Its just not the same…
Do you have a political ambition? If yes what will it be?
Can we call being a judge a political ambition, but I’d love to be a judge someday
Asides law and charity work, what else do you do?
I used to be in to business, had a fashion outfit, it’s been on pause for a while because of the pressures of 9-5 (well, that’s what we call it, more like 9-9) but yeah it will bloom again.
If you were not a lawyer what will you be?
An actress. (lol, my father said not under his roof, but I’ve been told by many that I’ld have made Hollywood by now or change Nolly to Holly hahahhaha) (We laughed)
Do you have a favorite meal?
Yes, anything meatie. I love “meat”
That popular opium “Lawyers are liars” what is your take on this? We know you love God 🙂
Well…….if I wasn’t a lawyer I might agree with it but being in the profession has made me think really hard about almost everything in life. Nothing is that simple, except believing in Christ. Every question can be answered without a lie but then not saying the truth…….so its crazy. I struggled a lot with ‘if they did it, they should just apologize and let’s end the case, serious conscience problems, and then I started to deal with things differently, lawyers just let the accusing or claiming party prove their case. We are like agents, advocates. We don’t judge, we put people’s cases forward to give them an opportunity of having life or properties restored. We try to make a difference from an almost impossible situation, we resolve disputes. We have principles we follow, we are not allowed to lead the judge astray so even in putting your case forward you have a duty to guide the court in truth. When people say that “lawyers are liars” I understand what they mean because if someone hurts you , you know they hurt you but you don’t know what the other person is saying. That person that is hurt will always hate me for putting the other person’s case forward hence ‘lawyers are liars’ (e.g let me make it a bit simple; your friend is getting a divorce, you hear her side and hate her husband, then you hear her husband’s side and its like ahn ahn she didn’t say all this o.…someone is lying but you can’t tell who. There are so many sides to a story, we pick one, more often than not your client tells you what he or she wants to and you have to work with that info). I pity the judges the most because they have to deal with both sides and determine who gets what…I just put what you’ve briefed me forward in the best possible way to guide the court. From another angle, I protect parties to an agreement by ensuring that my client is protected or any risk he takes is properly covered, I also do presentations on corporate governance or novel legal issues and try to help companies and individuals be guided/ comply with the law or find solutions to vacuums that may exist in our laws. Nothing “liar” about that. But to be honest, I understand the layman saying “all lawyers are liars” because I can be on both sides of a situation and properly justify it. 🙂
Finally, Ogo darling, we can not see any ring, can we match make you? *straightface*
Hahahaha…Jesus has the final say
Hahahaha! It’s been a very wonderful session with you on Rubies and Potters Madam Ogo.
Thanks for your time and support!