Ilke Henriette Platt-Akwenye
Sanlam senior marketing and communications consultant
Place of Origin
Windhoek International School Alumni, BA degree in media studies from University of Namibia (Unam) and current MA student at Unam.
Place of Current Residence
What one word would you use to describe yourself?
What made you pick the clothes you are wearing today?
Every Sunday I literally set out my weekly outfits. When I wake up in the morning I only select the shoes, bag and jewellery to match. The hair-do will be based on the previous evening’s mood. So, it is all pretty much pre-scheduled and planned.
Who would you take on a date to space and why?
I would take along my husband. We’ve experienced so much together and space would be another new exciting journey for the both of us. LoL
Tell us about your upbringing. What were your parents like?
My parents, late Dr Hendrik Gert Platt and late Gaynor Platt, were a well-respected couple that served the Uniting Reformed Church in Rehoboth and Windhoek. While growing up in the [United] States [of America], as my father completed his PhD [in theology], I have fond memories of them sacrificing so much to give us the best in life in a foreign country. They granted us many opportunities to see many places. They didn’t sacrifice on the quality of education we received. They were strict, but the most loving parents one could ever wish for. My brother, unfortunately was disciplined a bit more firmly than I, presumably being the second-born and having things a bit easier. My parents were always determined to ensure that we make the best out of what we would later choose to become in life and also supported our aspirations. Faith and humbleness were always instilled in us. We were always reminded that blessings and success in life are gifts from God.
Which celebrities do you believe are the most influential?
I won’t mention names, since there are many. However, those who change the way society thinks and behaves in a positive way; those who have been exemplary in helping the next [person]. Living life is not about your own benefit, but making a difference in some else’s.
What do you like to watch on TV?
With my current schedule at work and attending classes in the evening, I hardly get time to watch TV. But I have made time every Thursday evening to watch the series ‘Tyrant’ on Fox channel.
What is you favourite music?
Any old-school soul, R&B does it for me. I used to host a show on national radio that strictly played that genre of music. It will never get out-dated and it will always be in with the new.
Who do you love more: your parents, friends, spouse, kids, siblings, yourself?
When have you been most satisfied and proudest in your life and/or career?
There are so many proud moments in my 29 years on earth. A few would have to include attaining my degree, making my parents proud that their sacrifice and prayers paid off; getting a full-time job shortly after graduating even though I got my first pay cheque at the age of 15; getting married; having my firstborn son; and recently second-born son.
If you could be or do anything else – what would it be?
My family and I visited New York a few weeks back and we watched the Lion King on Broadway. It instantly reminded me of what I always wanted to do for a living while I was growing up, which was to become an actress. Being part of the audience and seeing the joy of the actors on stage had me thinking that, if I could do things differently at a younger age, I would be acting full time.
Who is your role model, or who do you draw inspiration from as an adult?
It would have to be my father, who was a clergyman and attained the highest accolade. My mother, who climbed the highest ranks in the health sector, moulded me into the woman I have become. My brother, a medical doctor in Mariental (Dr Berit Platt) continues to inspire me with his ambitions in life that he always manages to achieve. My husband, Nelson Akwenye, who always supports me in all that I do and allows me the opportunity to also be mentored by him, seeing the way he is able to achieve so much at such a young age.
How would you like the Namibian society (and the world) to remember you?
I would love Namibians to remember me as that go-getter, who achieved what she set out to achieve. I would also like to be remembered as that young girl, who managed to shape and influence many other girls lives’ positively and allow them to realise their dreams.
What things do you not like to do, or do not take well to?
I’m a real adapter. It’s quite hard to point out something that I don’t like to do, but I can much rather identify what I dislike. I dislike slow and bad customer service.
Do you believe in life after death? Good and evil? God? Are you a spiritual person?
Yes, I do believe in life after death. Growing up as reverend’s daughter we would always go to church, except when someone was ill or any other unfortunate circumstance. I am a firm believer in our Creator and live my life as a God-fearing woman.
What is the one thing about you few people know?
I have been in the broadcasting industry for over thirteen years.