Tuesday, December 27, 2011

My new website

Hello old friends,
It is with great pleasure that I would like to announce my new online base and invite you to visit my new home...


From now on, any and all new posts will be on there while this site will be archived for posterity purposes. I thank you for sticking with me all this while and invite you on a new journey of creativity and freedom of expression as I build my film and entertainment career.

You can also like the production outfit's official facebook page,

follow us on twitter

and subscribe to our Youtube channel so you are never out of the loop.

Also invite your friends to do the same. In the coming year, expect some interesting and fun projects from me and my collaborators and I welcome your comments and contributions.

Have a wonderful holiday and see you on the new site.


Monday, November 07, 2011

Been a long time

It's been a while since I checked in. Wonder sometimes if anyone ever even stops by. That's okay. I am working on a new home for my creative material that I hope I can unveil soon.
Till then, do check out some of what I have been working on and see you soon.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Growing Up Naija: Episode II

Comment, subscribe to the Youtube Channel and invite others to do so

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Latest Video Project: Growing up Naija Episode I

Check it out and please subscribe to my YouTube channel.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Nigerian E-passport

For those Nigerians who are not aware, all previous passports will be obsolete as from the end of this month and to travel or identify yourself as a citizen, you will need the new government issue passport.

I had to go to New York to apply for the passport even though I live in Washington DC where our consulate occupies prime land on Embassy row...but that is a story for another day. In any case, upon the request of a colleague, I am posting the steps I took to get the passport. For US only.

1. Visit http://www.immigration.gov.ng/

2. Click on APPLY ONLINE. It is at the top of the page.

The link will redirect you to https://portal.immigration.gov.ng/

3. Click on E-PASSPORT APPLICATION FORM. It is on the second block of information under the heading PASSPORT

4. The link will take you to a page "Apply for New passport"

Select "Standard e-passport" from the drop down menu and then the "issuing country" from the drop down menu, which in this case, I am going to assume is the US

5. You will be taken to another site, where you will be asked if you want to log in using google.

I did and then I logged in and filled the necessary information on the form

6. After you fill the form, you will be told that you cannot pay for the passport online. You will however be given a reference number and customer ID. You will then go purchase a $65 money order (unless the price changes) and mail it to:


US50 Albany TurnpikeCanton, CT 06019

Your confirmation page upon the first leg of completing the document will tell you what information to include in the money order.

7. No, there is no number to call them. There is an email on the site. And only God knows who won that contract.

8. Send your money order through registered mail.

9. The money order goes to Connecticut and someone there processes the payment and you receive a confirmation email.

NOTE: your appointment date at the embassy will be included in the email somewhere.

10. then you show up the day of your appointment, pray before going so that you are at your most gracious and patient.

Take with you: a) a $20.00 money order addressed to the "Consulate of Nigeria"

b) your old passport

c) the printed page of your receipt confirmation

d) the printed page of your appointment confirmation

11. At the embassy, even if you get there early, passport processing begins at 10 am prompt. The lady who handles this is very efficient at starting at exactly 10 am .

12. Have fun and see you around somewhere representing the Eagles.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Calling Nigerians and all lovers of Naija! Need pictures asap!

I am working on a small production and need your help with some pictures of the following asap! I would appreciate high res pictures but if you can't then, please by all means take them with your phones and please email me with your full name so that I can include it in the credits of the project. Email baniproductions@gmail.com please include in the subject line: Naija Pics (what your picture is about) Example: Naija Pics (Okada) Body of email: Name: Lagbaja Omolomo I need images for: Food: all traditional dishes (please remember to include names) Snacks: Fan Yogo, Okin Biscuit, gogo, sisi pelebe, chocomilo, baba dudu, coaster biscuit, goody goody, coke, eyin alangba, alata biscuit, Fashion: Gele, full outfits for men, women and children Literature: Fiction and non fiction Text books from back in the day: NOEC, Ababio etc Landmarks: any one where you are Lagos: third mainland bridge, 3 masquerades at toll gate, makoko, VI, Ojuelegba, Alade market, Totota Building, Things happening: Go-slow, people hawking, police men at work, vendors, bus stops, Iconic images: beat up cars, (public transport: okada, danfo, taxis etc), bumper stickers, graffiti on lorries, buildings, magazines, Living things: The good, the bad and the ugly Also, I am looking for MP3/ avi clips of music from veteran artists (1975-2000) : Shina Peters (circa 1992), Mike Okri, Esse Agese, Sunny Ade, Bright Chimeze, Sunny Okosun (pre-evangelist years), IK Dairo, Orlando Owoh, one Edo guy like this whose name escapes me, The Matadors, Christie, Onyeka Onwenu, Maintain (pre-the split), Remedies etc I really appreciate your help and look forward to your participation! Thanks

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

My First Lady

For the better part of a year, I and most educated Nigerians have been entertained by the verbal antics of our current First Lady. In a country where mediocrity is the new standard, we Nigerians can boast of First Lady whose vocabulary and command of the English language will cause anyone who passed through a semblance of a proper education to blanch.

As the country prepares for elections in April and we are bombarded both domestically and internationally (through the internet) with campaign slogans and political marketing tactics, I have been toying with the idea of making a viral video to parody some of her more famous grammatical faux pas in the form of a press conference where the First Lady answers questions from journalists--especially as her husband (presidential candidate) refused to participate in a more intellectual presidential debate, instead opting to a Q&A session with a hip hop star whose last taste of poverty was at least five years ago and thus cannot relate to any of the issues affecting Nigeria's youth.

So, I wrote a funny script for a four minute video.

Immediately I broached the subject about the production, I was advised not to go ahead with the project. I was immediately reminded of all those more credible journalists who had made direct criticisms of anyone in government and were picked up at the airport upon their return to Nigeria.
One colleague said bluntly, "You will be locked up in Kirikiri (a prison in Lagos)".
I was told I could do it but to use a cast of foreigners ( so as not to jeopardise other Nigerians involved) and upload it anonymously so it would not be traced to me.
This for calling attention to what we can all see, that the woman who stands as a representative for all women and women's issues in the country comes across as poorly educated and ill prepared to occupy her position; and this is a woman who used to teach at either the primary or secondary school level.

So I backed down because frankly, I am in no position to deal with any form of torture or imprisonment for speaking my mind. And also, I don't believe in hiding; if I have something to say, I will and deal with the consequences and if I can't, I keep my mouth shut.

It did not escape me that if I had chosen to make a similar video about Michelle Obama, in whose country I reside but do not hold citizenship, nothing will happen to me. As long as the video is not malicious and violent in intent, I would be left alone to express my humorous view on something she said and did. Basically, I am enjoying more rights in another person's country than in my own.

But I am fascinated by this woman who is married to the current president who is also seeking to remain in office. She represents some aspects of our society that are intriguing.

  • In a patriachal society like ours, she is a clear example of what happens when men marry down so as not to be challenged by their wives, and as they upgrade themselves over time, they do not demand the same of their spouses for the same reason. I have listened to the president speak and while I have never been floored by what he has to say, I am not afraid of him embarassing my country if he were to be present at an international forum with other Heads of State from around the world. I am sure when he first started out, he was not the way he is today but he has successfully improved himself; why he did not demand the same of his wife is beyond me. Now, she finds herself in this position and continously delivers one verbal faux pas after the other.
  • She represents an aging culture of Nigerian women who are simply content to just grow up to be married. I don't know of any personal credentials of hers but that is okay because she comes from a generation where that was the highest aspiration of their time. My generation is different and it is because her generation pushed mine to accomplish things of our own so that our identities would not be tied solely to our husbands. However, we are constantly represented by women from her time because the men they married, who lead us are in their fifties and older; relics of a failed system. A system that does my generation constant disservice and with her as an example, my gender as well.
  • Our educational system is horrible. Youth complain of a lack of employment. Employers complain that the bulk of available positions cannot be filled by an average Nigerian graduate. They are ill prepared for the work (thinking, writing and reading skills) and have somehow managed to pass through the educational system. When you hear our first lady speak and realise that she must have taught some of these graduates at some point, you realise why they are indeed ill prepared. And when you come across samples of cover letters written by graduates seeking jobs, you realise just how bad the situation is.
  • For a collection of cultures built on oral tradition, we do not have the gift of oration. Living abroad has given me a respect and liking for speeches. I have heard five minute speeches that kill on their subjects and bring the entire house to a thundering standing ovation. In Nigeria, when public figures give their speeches, you can use the opportunity to make business deals because nothing they are saying is engaging or delivered with charisma. This is probably because we have little or no training on public speaking and almost none of the public officers employ the services of trained speech writers. If the First Lady were to employ both 1) public speaking coaching and 2)a gifted speech writer, she could single handedly rally the entire nation behind her husband if she wanted to.

If her husband wins, we have more of her to enjoy for the next four years. If he doesn't, I am not convinced that his replacement would bring for us a First Lady that my generation of young women can look up to. Afterall, her predecessor had so many wise, wise words for us all in her time.

Till then, rainy season is upon us in Nigeria. Get your UNBLERA

Monday, February 14, 2011

My Big Fat Valentine

This is the abbreviated version of my quest to get find my first valentine. It is about time someone declares for me or at least stand there while I declare for myself.

November 2010

I realize that I am turning 27 in the following year and somehow, due to a multitude of different circumstances, I have never had a valentine. I am single at the moment and for the first time in a long time, have declared myself open to the possibility of a relationship—not with the same end goals like marriage as with most of my female colleagues but for companionship and an opportunity to share my life with someone while enjoying theirs as well—and so I decide to get proactive.
I purchase two tickets for Valentine’s Day 2011 to see the amazing Chris Botti in concert at the Kennedy Hall. If you don’t know who that is, poor you. Google will hook you up with information. Note: He is mine!!!!
In any case, tickets are bought. I begin to strategise how to find and maintain my “special male friend” . My theory: I have about two months to build at least a friendship and the possibility that he would be willing to attend the event. If he possibly plans an early or late dinner, I have the experience part covered with the jazz show. So you know, we both have fun. And Chris Botti.

I go contemplate the gym. Not liking the way my figure looks. Want to fit into a nice dress on V-day. Start investing in my hair. And with the price of weaves, putting them in, keeping them okay, extensions for braiding, it is indeed an investment.
I declare full out war on my acne.
Buy an instruction book on how to apply eye shadow so it does not look like something is growing on my eyelids.
I get to work

December 2010
I have a confusing social network. I am either a minority (by age, race and even gender), or not interested in anyone within one group or the other, have no clue about the socializing rules within the context, come across a bit weird or too strong.
Due to personal choices, opportunities to mix and mingle are limited.
Still, I am optimistic. I have one whole month.
I even start working out…like I mean, “start”. Like, I pop in the Brazilian Butt Lift Workout and watch it like a movie. You should. The trainer is a trip.
A friend suggests speed dating. I look at her like she is unstable.
Then I think about it.
I still have a month, dude.
Meet a guy. Super excited. He’s nice, funny, has travelled, reads, a lot, listens to music I have never heard of, eats almost anything and does not put on an ounce, very hot, makes me wish I had taken the butt lift system serious, makes me consider just how nice my current selection of underwear is, loves movies…
And smokes.
So he is off my list.
I am bummed.
I go see a movie.
I am the only one there by myself. This is not new.
But suddenly, I am aware.
However, the movie is amazing. I love it!!!!
I get home.
I read. Polish off a script.
Go through my calendar for the next couple of weeks and realize that I cannot make it to any of the new year’s parties because I am going to be at the Eck Center helping out with a children’s play. There: no one in my age group to talk to, talk less of a potential date. But we are giving service and doing God’s work.
No worries, I have a month.

January 2011
Lord have mercy.

Week one: packing up the office and moving to another location after 20 years in one place.

Week Two: International conference, dealing with attendees from all over the developed and developed world.

  • “Did we mistakenly book you on a flight to New Zealand Sir, instead of DC? Yes? Our Bad…how’s the weather, while we try to find a plane coming in this direction”

  • “Je m’excuse, madame. Je ne parle pas Francais. Eh…argent? What does that mean? Yes, I am African…No, I don’t speak French…Yesss, I come from one of the places the British got to. Thank you for your commiserations. How did the French do with you guys? No better? Awesome. Would you like some tea? Yeah, I am freezing too.”

  • “No habla espanole”

  • “No habla Portuguese…hun? That’s not Portuguese? Oh, you don’t even speak Portuguese? What were you speaking then? Italian? Wow? No hand movements and everything. Got me confused. Yes, I will go stand in the corner.

  • “Girl, I think I have killed my little toe. What’s that? The little protruding flesh on your foot that if all went well, should have a nail attached to it.

  • “Thank you sir for coming. We loved having you here. See you in six months.”

  • “Please send these boxes to this building. We are out”

  • “Put off the lights"

  • “Oh my God, Sir, you just arrived from New Zealand? The conference is over…Please accept these complimentary tickets to go see Black Swann…”

  • “Is it just me or did he seem a bit upset to you? …… I like his leather messenger bag. Who turns down tickets to Black Swann. Maybe we should have given him tickets to “For Colored Girls”

Week Three: Errr, where’s my office?

  • “Excuse me Manager, I was at the conference all of last week. When I got to my allotted space, err, it’s a wall”.

  • “Can I at least have a chair if I am going to be…u know what, is anyone staying in the closet? I can make it work. I have an undergraduate degree in architecture, I can construct…oops, I lied, No thanks…”

  • “Thank you manager, I found my office. It’s on another floor."

  • “Excuse me Manager, my phone does not work.”

  • “Excuse me Manager, my computer is only accepting commands in French…how come I am just finding out now? I went on the new office tour…"

  • "Excuse me Manager, my office door won’t open from the inside. Had to hold my pee for an hour till someone walked by…I might not have made it…but for the potted plant in my office.

  • I need a vacay.

Week Four:

  • Conference report and reviews

  • Balancing checkbooks

  • Planning for the rest of fiscal year.

  • Meetings

  • “Wait, what is today’s date?”

February 2011

  • “Girl, it’s me….yeah, happy to call you too. Have an issue. Err, I have two weeks to find a date to go see Chris Botti…Chris Botti…B…Oh…Tee…Tee…Eye. Jazz artist. Jay A. A. Anyways…what? No, I don’t want to go with him. Cos he is always telling me that my hips tell him, I can breed well….do something.”

  • “Hey Girl, long time, so…uhm, about that Speed dating thing…”

  • “Me, I work for an environmental agency. You? You collect guns? Awesome…where do I live? In Paris. I am only in DC for the speed dating event.”

  • “Yes, I do go to bars to order watered down orange juice. The bartender does not like me. Why does he not like you? You brought me here? Oh.”

  • “How is it that I am looking for one freaking date in this city and you have four men revolving around you like misplaced planets and you get engaged a month and a half after meeting someone? What are you into, Voodoo? Oh, did I say that loud? I looooove you.”

  • “What’s today again? Feb 11th? You’ve got to be kidding me.

February 14, 2011
In any case, I am off to see my future hubby at the Kennedy Center tonight. Yes, I know, I am seated to the side, possibly in the shadows. Don’t worry, he will know I am there.
And that is all that matters.
Oh, I brought a friend.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Research help needed

I am looking for historical information on the ancient cities of Owo and Ilorin in Yorubaland. can u help and point me in the right direction?

Thursday, January 06, 2011

New Year, New Year

I am like two weeks late for this but I figured, I had to come back at some point. This year is going to be an amazing one, filled with extensive creative projects and the formal establishment of creative outfits and collaborations.

Keep coming back