On Wednesday Plus TV caught up with Steven Okeke at another of his intrepid business developments. The Nigerian-born author and artist says he is taking a step back from the limelight after years of controversy and going back to one of his first loves – smoothie making. He showed off his wares today at his Just Smoothies Shop on the Northern Highway.
This is avocado and pineapple. We have as many as a hundred items on the menu. This is fresh mango, and this is fresh papaya. Now you can have a combination of fruits. You can mix papaya, mango, banana, and avocado. You can have different combinations. This is fresh fruit. You have a lot of fresh fruit here. You come here, you make your selection, and it’s blended for you. You name it, we blend it. It’s for the convenience of those who are around the neighbourhood.
We asked him to compare it to his juice business developed several years ago. He says that model was for all Belizeans to learn from – but this one is personal.
The fresh juice business was not meant for me to keep. I was trying to develop the business and to hand it over to Belizeans. Unfortunately I closed most of them, but one is still available on Freetown Road. So if you want to drink fresh juice, you go to Freetown Road, a Belizean family, a born and bred Belizean family. Here is simply smoothies. You come here. You make your order, make your combination. We blend it. You can add fruits, peanut, almond, date fruit. You can add combinations. You can add vegetables also, and we blend it for you. We have cucumber right here, and spinach.
Steven Okekealso makes milkshakes and frozen coffee. The establishment is at his residence at Mile 3 on the Philip Goldson Highway. On Thursday, we will tell you why he has given up his first love, sculpting, but while we had him we did ask about the payment for his bust of Antonio Soberanis – $25,000 from the City Council. He was to have been paid last week, but he says he hasn’t gotten a dime.
The Mayor handed me the document himself. I signed it, he signed it in my presence, to give me double assurance that the money would be paid, including tax, would be paid on or before the 6th of September. I don’t really mind anymore. I just want to get out of public life, and get out of those aspects that I see are offensive to Belizeans.