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For Kate Henshaw, entertainment is a calling

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Kate Henshaw

She played the protagonist, Mabel King, in the new political drama directed by Ishaya Bako titled, 4th Republic.

Her performance in the flick has continued to receive plaudis. She was on top of her game as a politician, who, in her quest to become Nigeria’s first female governor, is shattered, because of electoral malpractices. That’s Kate Henshaw.

Give the one time Federal House of Representatives aspirant a character to interprete and she will live it believably.

An actor’s actor, Kate, daughter of Etubong Etim and Theresa Henshaw of the Henshaw Royal family of Cross River State, had her break in When the Sun Set.

It was from there the Efik princess developed an unquenchable passion for acting. And as the passion grew, the microbiology graduate sought other movie roles, and over time, producers found the star of movies such as, Girls in the Hood, A Million Tears, To love and to Hold, Dangerous Silence, Blood and Ice and Emotional Hazards a ready hand for their offerings.

Today, Kate, who is one of the international judges on CBS Television Network Company new reality television show, The World’s Best, has, through dint of hardwork, dedication and discipline, earned a top place in the movie.

Indeed, she has, with boundless passion and a stubborn determination to succeed, risen to become a leading force in the Nigerian motion industry. She speaks on her involvement in ‘4th Republic, politics and other issues.

Playing The Political Heroine
Definitely, the role I played in 4th Republic brought back memories of my 2014 experience running for a seat in the Federal House of Representatives.

I mean it was easy to understand and appreciate all the intrigues and the threats that come with running for a political office. So, it definitely brought back memories of that shot that I took at politics.

Again, I was working with a director and a crew that insisted that the character must be real and be as believable as possible. I’m very glad with the reviews.

Chances of A Woman Emerging Governor Or President
I think it is possible. Very possible and we cannot stop trying or believing that it is possible. I mean, it is happening in the world over, even in Africa.

Women are taking their place and they are being given the opportunity and a real chance at leadership, most especially, elective positions. So, it is possible here if we are persistent. I wonder why Nigeria will always go left when other societies are going right. We have to continue trying.

One day, some day, they will be forced to go right like other countries in the world. I mean, women are more than appendages.

My Notes As An Accredited Electoral Observer
I served as an observer during the just held general elections, and generally, I observed that we could surely make our electoral process less painful for citizens.

We have to be transparent and have integrity, if truly we want a democratic government. We must also shun violence, under-age voting and all forms of electoral malpractices.

For young people, it is to be diligent and truthful in all their involvement. They must resist all attempts to use them as tools to hinder the process. And I think that celebrities must avail themselves to serve before and during the campaign process. There is so much they can do to mobilise the citizenry to do the right things during the process.

We may not be able to make as much politically themed films, as we should, because of budget constraints and the fact the returns are not the same, but we can use our status as influencers to get people to do the right thing for the sake of our country.

Love For Fitness
Well, the whole fitness thing for me started 10 years ago and I am using it as a tool to encourage mostly women, because I’m one, and men too, to live a healthy and fit lifestyle.

The benefits are too numerous to mention given our sedentary lifestyle in Nigeria and our heavy dependant on food with a lot of carbohydrate. You asked whether I would end up with a gym. Well, let’s see. But for now I will say that I’m working on some things.

Staying Power
I would say God’s grace and abundant favour. I mean, like you observed, most of those I started out with have either gone on to do other things or are still here. I really don’t know what they are not doing right but I attribute mine to God’s grace and favour totally. Life also takes people in different directions after a while and these things can’t be helped.

Bye-Bye To Politics
I’m not sure I will seek elective office again. Not sure. But I will advice young people to join a party and be a part of the process that brings forth a candidate. Without that, your only input will be to vote or not vote for the candidate the party puts up as flag bearer.

Memorable Career Moments
Winning my first award in 1996 at Glover Memorial Hall for Best Upcoming Actress with the movie, When The Sun Sets.

Also, winning the best actress award at the Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) with Stronger Than Pain.

Nkem Owoh played my husband in that movie and he was also voted best actor. And the third will be serving as international judges on the CBS Television Network Company new reality television show titled ‘The World’s Best’. It was an invaluable experience for me. Totally fulfilling and it is definitely a big feather in my cap. I’m so proud that I represented my country.

Career Ambition
I don’t think anything has changed from what I have expressed at various times as my career ambition.

Well, I would just say that it is to continue to be relevant to society especially in the two worlds that I currently find myself-that is entertainment and healthy life style. Interestingly, the two are linked. They go together.


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