An intriguing moment with a phenomenal lady, Anto Lecky who is a former housemate and semi finalist of the BBnaija reality show. Her full name is Munirat Antoinette Lecky and She has actually spent almost all her years outside of Nigeria. She has only lived in Nigeria for a total of 3 years and the reason she came back is for the job she loves to do. She grew up in Jersey City, New Jersey with her 2 parents, 3 siblings and cousin who she says is basically a sibling. She says her parents worked very hard to take care of them, engaging in multiple jobs each. Maybe contrary to what you might be thinking as she lived almost all her life outside Nigeria, in her words, “People think you like the US so everything is rosy but it really wasn’t but we thank God”
Relating her experience over there and her change in environment with the nature of a typical a Nigerian man, she said: “Luckily my parents raised us as if we lived in Nigeria so I didn’t have much of a shock once I got here. Yes, Nigeria isn’t easy AT ALL! But one thing about Nigerians all over the world, we know how to persevere. We can survive in any condition.” She agrees that this served as a leverage for her in the long run
So, let’s follow as she takes us on a short journey.
You have an impressive CV. Majority of what you have there rally around sports business and sport management. Why so much love for sports?
I believe in sports as a fan and as an administrator. I started managing the basketball team in school then the love grew from there. Sports is why I came to Nigeria. All of the world, Nigerians are dominating in sports, so Nigerians should dominate in sports in their home country as well.
So what was the experience like while managing and working as a sports administrator over there and how is it like now?
There’s definitely a big difference. Sports in the US are cherished and there is a sense of pride from the little kids playing football up to the professionals. However, in Nigeria it’s not the same. Most people in Nigeria cannot even name the teams in the Nigerian professional football league. Also, being a woman in sports in general is tough, especially in Nigeria. Also the government involvement in sports in Nigeria is not how it is in the US. The major issue with sports in Nigeria is that there are people who are passionate about sports but don’t have the business mind for it, while there are people who can invest in sports but know nothing about the game. So there is a disconnect which leads to a bad sports product. And no one wants to support a bad sports product. Also, when people think of sports they don’t think of women. Globally women in sports are not as celebrated as their male counterparts. Even Serena Williams who is probably the best Tennis player in the world still doesn’t get regarded as such because she is a woman. Talk less of women who want to work in the business of sports.
So how do you think this gap and disconnect can be bridged? Especially in Nigeria
You want the real answer? Lol, it won’t be bridged until the Nigerian government decides to separate sports from government. But that’s a conversation for another day.
You mentioned that women are not celebrated in sports, wouldn’t this mean that this issue of gender and equality between the two genders is still on and very hot?
Absolutely. That’s why we have feminists still fighting for rights. Gender equality is not only a problem in sports, but in the workplace in general and at home. I won’t get into the feminism talk either. What we all need as humans is to be respectful and receptive.
How would you describe your career journey so far?
Escalatory! each position was better than the previous and prepared me for the next.
Would you like to take a job in the Nigerian football industry?
I wouldn’t mind a job in the Nigerian football industry. It definitely wouldn’t be my full time job but consulting on how to make changes would be great.
Alright! Away from that. You were evicted from BBN and voted back in, how did that feel? Especially the initial eviction
The week I was excited, I had a feeling that I would be. The house is a game. Someone must win and lose. So I was sad when I was evicted but got over it. Especially for me I was evicted twice, it definitely hurt and the second eviction was definitely the most painful but the prize wasn’t for me.
Didn’t that hit on your confidence?
Wouldn’t say my confidence. It was a game so it is what it is. But I was upset in the moment
Apart from the game and competition in the house, what other thing is there?
I learned about myself. How to deal with “interesting” situations. How to deal with personalities different from my own. If you can be in the big brother house, you can deal with anything. Yes. It’s a social experiment. You are forced to deal with issues you wouldn’t deal with on the regular.
So what was the peak for you while you were there?
Honestly I don’t remember things that happened in the House. I put it behind me. It was just a phase to get to the next step. But my second entry into the house was pretty cool.
Do you guys still connect?
We shared an experience together so we will always have some kind of bound. We’re all very busy trying to make the best of the platform and we support each others endeavors.
How would you describe all the lovey-dovey in the house?
We were in a place where it was only a small amount of people. Human nature forces people to together. Plus with the “pairing” it made some of us closer to some than others. I can’t say about everyone exactly, but in the House, it was good to know you had someone to support and care for you.
What’s your selling point?
I’m great (laughs). Honestly I would say I am highly educated, well spoken, hardworking and a risk taker. This makes me very reliable both in personal and professional situations. My education is part of the things I cherish the most. My parents didn’t play around when it came to school. I always excelled and I am very proud of that. And I encourage others to focus on education as well. True, the education system in Nigeria might not be the best but you won’t get a job without a certificate and NYSC so…education is still necessary.
Alright! What would you say makes a complete beauty enhancement?
Being natural is the best beauty enhancement. When I say being natural, I mean your natural self, loving and taking care of your God given features. All the extra stuff is cool but start with the real “foundation” and everything else added is just for fun.
We see a lot of ladies going around with all the “extras” and many can’t even take some bold steps outside whenever they are not in their best looks. One can be tempted to say it’s a result of lack of self-confidence.
It could be. It’s also societal pressures. When only certain things are being praised and you don’t fit that look, you do things to start fitting it.
Then on bleaching, what do you say?
Bleaching. I won’t do it personally but whatever makes people happy they should do it. I just hope bleaching is actually making the people happy. I do wish more people loved the skin they are in, but it can be tough at times. This is one of the things that destroy physical beauty for ladies, coupled with the usage of bad products in general. Expired or products with bad ingredients. But men also bleach and use weird products also so it’s not only a ladies’ issue. We should just learn to embrace our natural body form and style.
So, what’s your take on love at first sight?
I don’t believe in it for myself. For others I still think it’s pretty weird but it works for some. Love isn’t about looks. So love at first sight to me is more like lust. You love what you see not what you know.
On abstinence before marriage: “whatever works for the marriage. I honestly don’t know if I will or won’t. Will see once I get there”
On kneeling for one’s husband: “I think there are cultural Norms then realistic norms. On your wedding day, during your traditional wedding, I see nothing wrong with kneeling. But I wouldn’t expect one to kneel every day in the household. But some people do it, so if it works for them, then fine.”
What is the big thing you are doing right now and what should we expect frim you soon?
I recently released my luxury haircare line, Anto Lecky X Taries Hairbuilder luxury haircare line. It’s an international brand. We ship worldwide and soon to have distributors all over the world. So that is what I’m most focused on at the moment. I plan to continue working with different brands as an influencer. And hopefully launch some of my own projects.
How do you handle criticism especially on social media?
Social media criticism still is annoying. But it’s part of the life now. Some things you ignore. Some things you have to clear people on. Luckily most social media critics have no idea what they are talking about so the things don’t hurt me much.
How do you combine business with modelling and acting? How easy is it for you?
I’m a hustler! But honestly it’s not easy juggling it all. I try to be Superwoman but one does need rest at times. I have always been good at organizing, that was strength in the workplace, so it’s what keeps me going now. But yes, sometimes the work gets too much but we must push.
What makes you most happy always?
FOOD makes me most happy! I would say sleep but when my sleep is interrupted it no longer makes me happy. Favorite food is plantain. I don’t like amala. I only eat it if it’s the only food around