opinionBy Jonathan Iwu
Recently, the crying baby of Nollywood and the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor of Imo State Nkeiruka Sylvanus has been embattled. The sultry actress who was catapulted to stardom in her epic movie 'A Cry for Help" now seems to be in need of that help she sought for a long time ago. Known and appreciated for her emotional outbursts with tears rolling down her beautiful cheeks, making her look defenseless and vulnerable Nkiru appears to be have fallen prey to real life tormentors this time around.
Her special talent evident in the effortless interpretation of her roles has brought along with it friends and foes alike, but Nkiru Sylvanus has had a way of always evading scandals and controversies. Try hard as she may these twin evils that haunt successful movie stars continue to stalk her like a shadow. Her first baptism of mischievous gossip sought to question her academic attainments but she was able to shake them off convincingly and conclusively to the chagrin of her foes and the admiration of her fans.
Then she got enmeshed in a romantic rumpus with one Asha, a musician who was later found to be using her name to further his musical career by posing in a friendly photograph with her and making claims of a relationship. Following Nkiru's shrill protests, further investigations led to an apology to her by the medium that published the malicious story. In a similar vein, another tabloid cast similar aspersions on her with an aide of the vice president but the junk editors were also made to swallow their sleaze with due apologies to the thespian.
Nkiru Sylvanus herself has made enough efforts to explain her relationship with her boss whom she refers to as a father figure but in our own peculiar way of prejudiced denunciation nobody seems to be paying her any attention, instead romantic tales keep flying around her and Rochas Okorocha, all in a bid to make her a recluse.
Now another tabloid, in its recent edition, concocted a story suggesting that the actress had parted ways with her boss and has accordingly being relieved of her appointment supposedly due to persistence of the Imo state First Lady, still purporting the existence of a romantic relationship. The magazine went further to cast aspersions on her intellectual capacity apparently in a manner as to render her insignificant and out of reckoning among her peers. As if that was not enough, a blogger Linda Ikeji went ahead with the same sponsored story without ascribing any source to it. The defamers of innocent character who seem to take an insatiable delight in mudslinging and name smearing have targeted Nkiru Sylvanus with sadistic zeal.
Obviously, being human, it was wise for her to rise to the occasion to effectively defend her name and set the records straight. But it was not surprising that her true friends were quick to decipher the malicious objective of such stories which were mere tall tales crafted by those crouching in the shadows of Nkiru's trail blazing successes in career and reputation that had illuminated the movie and entertainment arena.
On her FACEBOOK page and to some of her friends in other Social Media networks, Nkiru Sylvanus wrote thus:
"I am aware that one fake jobless blogger (names withheld) has been peddling news about me saying I lost my appointment with Imo State Government. For the records, I was the Lagos Liaison Officer, Senior Special Assistant on Lagos Affairs which I handed over to Lisa Asugha and I am now Senior Special Assistant Public Affairs and this happened five months ago when there was a cabinet reshuffle. To my fans, who still love and believe in me, God will always be faithful. For those who want my downfall, sorry, I am the wrong person because I stand tall and strong".
Evidently those who were after her were not aware of this development and when her absence from Lagos was noticed they jumped to their jaundiced conclusion that she must have been relieved of her appointment. They failed to observe the elementary rule of journalism which is to hear from the appropriate authority on the authenticity of the story. They choose to go to Press with a story that suited their thinking and perceptions, typical of charlatans in the trade.
As her fans who believe in the shining stature of the celebrity, we are confident that she has all it takes to serve the good people of Imo State and much more. We salute the courage of Governor Okorocha for playing down indigeneship sentiments while building the Ndigbo nation through the effective utilization of responsive and responsible people in his government. This gives rise to the cross-fertilization of ideas. Nkiru Sylvanus is not the only non-Imolite in his administration, the celebrated soccer star Kanu Nwankwo is also one of them. We are convinced that a leader should look out for competence, loyalty and intellectual capacity to help him run his government and drift away from parochial sentiments that seem to divide us instead of uniting us. States like Lagos and Kaduna have demonstrated such commendable initiatives.
Nkiru Sylvanus is the cat with nine lives, one that has exonerated herself from the plots and machinations of her adversaries. We urge you to continue to keep the flag flying. As a detribalized Nigerian with the appeal and charm of Cinderella, the machinations of your adversaries should not deter, rather they should spur you to greatness. Those who are afraid of you shall continue to be behind you while you make your expected leap unto the future with showers of blessings and amazing successes.
-Jonathan Iwu, No 30 Panama Street, Maitama- Abuja