October 23, 2021

17th Excellence Recognition Awards Honours Top Nigerian Achievers *why ERA 2021 is unique… *how the winners emerged… *all the pictures, all the details

2021 marks the 17th year of the Excellence Recognition Awards a.k.a. ERA. ERA, since creation, has contributed to the explosion of how style and social award events are organized in Nigeria, while redefining their creativity. The organizers of the ERA have grown in scale towards an effort to discover new and innovative creations of the yearly awards ceremony.

GLOBAL PANDEMIC, BE DAMNED

This year’s event held amid unprecedented times. Since the rise of COVID in late 2019 when low turnouts were recorded, with modified quarantine initiatives and social distancing practices still partly in force, this year’s edition was above the average in rating; it was, indeed, another amazing success. The venue, Balmoral Events Centre on Kudirat Abiola Way, Oregun, Ikeja, for a long period of time, has been identified as the perfect place for a grand event like this.

The Sunday, 26th of September programme started with the opening remarks from Mayor Akinpelu, the CEO of Global Excellence Communications Limited, the organizers of ERA. A record number of awards were presented to winners in celebration of their outstanding feats. And all including invited guests, were feted with foods and choice drinks. This year’s edition saw more VIP selections that not only suited the theme of ERA- the award of excellence for those who deserve   to be honoured -but also tended to encourage the winners with a will to pioneer new possibilities toward achieving excellence more.

The reading of the profiles was done by Lady Busola Kukoyi of the LTV fame, each done with mastery of intonation, while the first three sets of the 21 winners were announced by the duo of Mayor Akinpelu and Lady (Dr.) Bukky Jaiyesimi, giving the winners the fantastic opportunity as the year’s best in business excellence. Other categories were presented to winners by City People magazine publisher, Seye Kehinde; Kenny Ogungbe and Ayo Badmus. The evening featured compelling performances from ace Hip-Hop and rap artistes who gave the best from their famous songs to the admiration of invitees.

The roll call of music artistes in attendance include 9ice, Atorise, Muraino, Ice-K, Bigiano, HY2, Azadus, Damz Kit, Neo Phlames, Sammy Oma, Ogidan, Jay Sax, and many others. The six-man comic squad was led by Gbenga Adeyinka 1st, who compered the event. Others are Koffi, MC Ajele, Bash, MC Pato, Pencil G and Baba Alariya. This star comedians set the tone for the evening,  unleashing their best to liven up the night with rib-cracking humour. Behind the wheel-of-steel were DJ Mystic and DJ Virgin who wowed the evening with superb exchange of up-to-date vibes, making the occasion both more festive and relaxed.

WHAT IT MEANS TO BE AN ERA RECIPIENT

Excellence Recognition Awards honours businesses that are unique and individuals that demonstrate leadership in their respective industry, and fields. Winners of ERA automatically become an inspiration and positive role models in their chosen fields. For the lucky winners, being recipients of Excellence Recognition Awards is special and meaningful; they will have the opportunity to reflect on their achievements for which they are honoured; it affords them the chance to plan ahead and and it gives them the assurance that they are on the right track. ERA rewards the fact that the recipients’ businesses are recognized, cherished and appreciated.

CORPORATE SUPPORT

This year’s award ceremony was taken the next level, thanks to a leading Nigerian brand, Nigerian Breweries Plc, that partnered the ERA organizers. ERA also had the support from its regular partners in the broadcast media, security, sound equipment and food and drinks sector with these ideas from leading brands. The organization is thankful for the support from Goldmyne Entertainment, Primetime Entertainment, Primetime TV, DAAR Communications, Brila FM, Beat FM, HIP TV, Jordan FM, Kennis FM, Raypower FM and Star FM. ERA also extends its appreciation to City Royal Beat, Corporate Guards, Laredo and Z-Mirage. They all made ERA 2021 fun-filled and very engaging. And who doesn’t love to eat and drink? To make its invited guests and winners maintain their stunning figures, ERA 2021 provided delicious ‘small chops’ and high-priced wines as incentives.

GUESTS APPEARANCE

Variety is the spice of life but it can also be the spice of an awards show like ERA 2021. The guests attended the night in their gorgeous best, an interesting combination of traditional and modern outfits. Just like the presentation style,

THE EXCELLENT HOSTS

ERA 2021 paraded excellent facilitators who made the evening a great one. Kenny Keke Ogungbe, Dr. Bukky Jaiyesimi, Busola Kukoyi, Gbenga Adeyinka 1st, Ayo Badmus and a few fine awards hosts, added their best, offering a fine balance between entertainment and announcements to spice the event and make it one to remember in a long time. For Gbenga Adeyinka, he displayed his uniqueness, knowing when to raise the stakes, crack a joke and make his delivery as the compere.

ERA WINNERS AT A GLANCE

Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Governor of The Year

Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu, the 15th Govenor of Lagos State, is a man of great feats. His outstanding performance in the last two years has endeared him more to the citizens and established him as the symbol of responsible governance in Nigeria.

Owing to his service-centered leadership, Governor Sanwo-Olu has become the reference point for excellence in public service in Nigeria. His timely and strategic intervention in the COVID-19 pandemic saved our entire country from a major calamity and enabled the upgrading of the healthcare system in Lagos State.

Specifically, the methodical implementation of the THEMES Agenda of  his administration is an eloquent testimony to his resolve to transform Lagos State into a leading mega-city in the world. From Ikorodu to Badagry, from Epe to Alimosho, from Agege to Satellite Town more than 301 inner roads were rehabilitated and modern infrastructure in schools, health care and transportation spring-up daily.

Matching his words with actions, Governor Sanwo-Olu has demonstrated to citizens across the 57 Local Governments and LCDAs in Lagos State that the dividends of democracy are actually tangible. Since the beginning of his administration, Lagos has been a semblance of a construction site, with the massive infrastructural development going-on concurrently in every part of the State, delivering verifiable project that make life easier and better for the people.

Over this period, many landmark projects have been delivered. These include the Agege-Pen Cinema Bridge, 1,440 home units across the State, Urban Renewal on Victoria Island, Delivery of 102 Waste Compactor Trucks and 100 Double Dino bins to boost LAWMA operations, Introduction of Body cameras for security operatives, Donation of 150 vehicles, 4 high-capacity troop carriers, 2 Anti-riot Water Cannon Vehicles to the Police Force towards security strengthening in the State.

Construction resumed on the Lagos-Badagry Expresway, worked commenced on the Lekki Regional Road, 1,017 LASTMA officials were recruited to help with traffic management, Mother and Children Care Centers (MCCs) were built at Eti-Osa, Igando, Badagry and Epe. Under the watch of this man of extra-ordinary performance, new ferry routes were created from Ijede to Badore, Bayeiku to Ajah, and from Ebute Ojo to Marina, just as there were additional 500 mini buses and 100 high capacity business to the State Mass Transit Scheme to make intra-city commuting easier for Lagosians.

His magic wand is also visible in education with the introduction of the EkoExcel programme to revolutionize primary education in the State. The EkoExcel proragmem has reached over 1,009 primary schools, while over 13,000 teachers and over 450,000 pupils have benefitted from the scheme. Currently, Mr. Sanwo-Olu is championing 3000km fiber connection across Lagos. Some of the areas covered have already connected our primary schools and healthcare facilities. This initiative is not only the foundation of the Lagos Smart City Project, but a platform for the development of the needed capacity in our children to compete with their contemporaries in the more developed nations of the world.

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Amb. Tukur Yusuf Buratai, Lifetime Achievement Award

His Excellency, Ambassador (Lieutenant-General) Tukur Yusufu Buratai (Rtd), former Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Nigerian Army, was a seasoned senior military officer who served the nation in various capacities for over three decades. He voluntary retired from military service in January 2021and is now Nigeria’s Ambassador to the Benin Republic.

The zeal to serve the nation made him apply and gain admission into the prestigious Nigerian Defence Academy Kaduna as a member of the 29th Regular Combatant Course (29 RC) on 3rd January 1981. Destined for greater heights, General Buratai has always been promoted as and when due. During his tenure as the Chief of Army Staff, the Army was transformed into a truly professional and responsive Nigerian Army. An Army that has improved on its Order of Battle (ORBAT), training, operations, general administration, including welfare and logistics with tremendous infrastructural development. There was enhanced Civil-Military Relations, Innovations, Cyber Warfare and Cyber Security. There was an improved Nigerian Army Intelligence Corps through the procurement of modern equipment.

The Nigerian Army today has better intelligence and security through effective and efficient intelligence operations. The NA inter-agency cooperation was first class promoted through Exercises like PYTHON DANCE, CROCODILE SMILE, HARBIN KUNAMA, AYEM AKPATUMA and SAHEL SANITY, among others. With these exercises, the security situation across the country had been mainly stabilized. The welfare of troops and their families was improved with various welfare programmes in empowerment, investments and staff development.

One of Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai’s greatest achievements was preservation of democracy and respect for the political authorities. The Army remained apolitical and subordinated to the democratic rule. On Tuesday, June 22, 2021, Buratai’s meritorious service in the army earned him the appointment as Ambassador to the Republic of Benin by President Muhammadu Buhari.

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Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa, Speaker of The Year

Proudly representing the good people of Agege Constituency 01, Rt. Hon. (Dr.) Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa is one of the most experienced legislators and currently the longest serving member in the Lagos State House of Assembly. A vibrant, thorough and reliable legislator and a darling to the people of Agege, Obasa had no problem renewing his mandate for a 4-time record in 2007, 2011, 2015 and 2019. Over the years, while carrying out his representative and lawmaking duties, he has left no one in doubt in terms of his loyalty and commitment to serve as he distinguished himself as the Chairman and member of various sensitive House Committees including Education; Rural Development; Public Accounts; Local Government, Economic Planning and Budget amongst others with outstanding impacts on governance.

At the inauguration of the 8th Legislative Assembly, Obasa was unanimously elected as the 7th speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly. During the period as speaker, he brought the many years of his political ingenuity and legislative experience to the fore, thus, ushering in an era of remarkable innovation, historical development and quality representation.

Amongst these, he initiated the first ever annual Constituency Stakeholders’ Meetings which are held simultaneously across all constituencies in the State to engender deeper constituency engagement between legislators and their constituents down to the grassroots for better development. The reports of these meetings have fueled a number of major policies and infrastructural developments across the State since 2015. Very passionate about the delivery of good governance, Obasa had personally initiated a number of Private Member Bills which were passed into laws. These include the Neighbourhood Safety Corps Bill, a visionary initiative that established the first law-backed local policing and intelligence gathering outfit in the South-West which is now a precursor to the proposed Amotekun Bill; the Anti-Kidnapping Bill, a proactive measure to forestall the growing security challenges in the country; and the Cancer Research Institute Bill, meant to create a cancer research institute aimed at reducing cases of cancer in the State.

Under his leadership, the Lagos State House of Assembly has continued to build sterling reputation for best practices in legislation and representation. Its laws, resolutions and activities have continued to inspire many including students, politicians, legislative and government institutions in the country and beyond.  While the Lagos State House of Assembly has earned for itself numerous local and international commendations. On June 7, 2019, Rt. Hon. (Dr.) Obasa was re-elected Speaker of the Lagos State 9th Assembly.


Marian Ogaziechi, Advertising Personality of The Year

Marian Ogaziechi is an integrated marketing specialist with a demonstrated high performing track record in Investments and Trade Management. As an enterpreneur, her roles have seen her lead the commercial team to various commercial bids through competitive investment offerings for local and multinational clients in various categories. Currently, she is leading the Trading and Investment Management Team as well as Story Lab Nigeria at Mediafuse Dentsu Holding Co and also serves on the board of Story Lab Nigeria.

Having experienced how interesting the world of media communication is, working as the brand manager for Televista and Village Square (now known as Trybe TV), Marian’s day-to-day focus is centered on delivering an enhanced value experience while optimizing the varying skills and experience she has been opportune to have in her professional journey with a clear focus to drive efficiency and revenue growth. She is motivated to mentor highly engaged young people in the media and communications industry; sharing the lessons she has learnt through her journey.

While her academic and professional experiences may have prepared her; tenacity, hard work, diligence, commitment to consistently deliver value, mastering the art of relationship management and a firm grasp of understanding the role excellent service delivery plays in achieving sustainability are the driving values that have brought her to this point.

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Knight Frank Nigeria, Best Facilities Management

Knight Frank Nigeria is one of the largest firms of real estate surveyors and valuers in Nigeria and across Sub-Saharan Africa.

In the 1960s Knight Frank: the world’s largest independent residential and commercial property consultancy, ventured into Nigeria, making it the very first office of the global firm outside the United Kingdom.

The growth of Knight Frank Nigeria from its inception, can be attributed to its high-standards of professionalism, commercial acumen and integrity. Working closely with owners, occupiers, developers and investors, its commercial and residential specialists are members of Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV), Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), adhering to the highest levels of industry code of conduct, at all times.

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Chief (Mrs.) Folashade Adeshoye, Businesswoman of The Year

Chief (Mrs.) Folashade Risikat Adunni Adeshoye is a multiple award winning Jewellery merchant. On completing her secondary education, she worked at CFAO Moloney in Obalende Lagos and LAHAM Executive Services, a security outlet in Surulere, Lagos. She later continued her professional studies in Catering & Hotel Management where she received a Certificate from City & Guilds. On acquiring her certificate, Chief (Mrs.) Adeshoye ventured into the business in 1985, selling fashion merchandise.

A few years later, she founded the renowned luxury jewelry business, known as Jewellery Affair, a division of Farmit Ventures Nig. Ltd, as well as a real estate company called AZID Properties Nig Ltd. As MD CEO of Jewellery Affair & Chairman of AZID Properties, Chief (Mrs.) Adesoye’s accomplishments have been highly acclaimed, earning her numerous awards of excellence.

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Liberty Assured, Emerging Innovative Digital Lending Company

Liberty Assured is a Licensed Financial Institution that is led by experienced Individuals with a passion to bridge the divide in every economic sphere. It seeks to entrench financial liberty and freedom by filling the void within the business sector ranging from Nano-Micro businesses to MSME and personal finances. Its focus is to bridge financial gaps and inclusion.

The vision at Liberty Assured is to extend credit reach to the horizons of the nation and enhance the economy of the nation by harnessing the potentials of the financially excluded and the unbanked by bridging the gap through the provision of financial liberty. Its services cover a wide array of sectors to ensure that it serves its customers at every point by advising and proffering business solutions and enhancement procedures which helps to drive business growth. Its newly launched digital lending service will provide quick and instant solutions to the financially excluded. Its current phase of the service covers federal workers and salary earners while it is continuing to develop products that will enable it reach the grassroots through digital means.

With its continuous customer advisory service, Liberty Assured follows through from understanding the clients’ needs and walks with them through their dreams and desires and giving best solutions to suit the specific requirements, all in a timely manner.

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Dr. Taiwo Olayinka Afolabi, Entrepreneur of The Year

Dr. Taiwo Olayinka Afolabi (MON), the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of SIFAX Group, began his professional career with a shipping company, Nigerian Express Agencies Limited, where he distinguished himself and rose to become the Head of Operations. With the zeal of entrepreneurship burning in him, he left the company in 1988 to establish what has now turned to a big conglomerate, SIFAX Group, a business interest with diverse investments in Maritime, Aviation, Haulage, Logistics, Oil & Gas and Hospitality, among others.

From a little beginning, the company, which started as a freight forwarding agency in Lagos, Nigeria, currently operates across the world with presence in the United States, Ghana, Guinea, Gambia, Sierra Leone, among others. He has also extended the footprints of his investment into the financial sector with the establishment of Sky Capital and Financial Allied International Limited, a financial services investment firm. The foray into the financial sector is not limited to the boundaries of Nigeria, as three banks have been acquired in Gambia, Guinea and Sierra Leone by SIFAX Group.

With about three decades of rich entrepreneurial experience, Dr. Taiwo Afolabi, through the dint of hardwork, foresight, resilience, vision and knack for excellence, has emerged not only as one of the leading business icons in Nigeria, but also reckoned with across the world. His company, Sifax Group, alongside its subsidiaries like Sky Power Aviation Handling Company Limited and the newly-opened Marriot Hotel in Ikeja, has generated both direct and indirect employment for thousands of eligible Nigerians.

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Lagos State Printing Corporation, Government Agency of The Year

The journey of Lagos State Printing Corporation started with the establishment of Government Press, a division of the ministry of information and tourism in 1971 by late Brigadier Mobolaji Johnson (rtd), the first military governor of Lagos State and was officially commissioned on 30th of August, 1974, with the mandate to print official documents of the government.

In a bid to reactivate and reinvigorate the press for effective and optimal performance, the executive governor of Lagos State, late Alhaji Lateef Kayode Jakande, changed the status of Government Press with the enactment of Law No. 16 of 1980 by the Lagos State House of Assembly to Lagos State Printing Corporation. The singular act expanded its scope of business to provide quality print services to corporate bodies and general publics.

The state government, however, equipped the Corporation with Hi-Tech state-of-the-art machines to bring the Lagos State Printing Corporation to international standard. This was to enable it provide unsurpassed print services to all. The new mandate as a government corporation include production of security prints, exercise books, drawing books, text books, magazines, stationery and allied products. For the record, Lagos State Printing Corporation has seen massive turnaround under the new management.

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Hon. Tokunbo Phillip Wahab, Government Official of The Year

Mr. Tokunbo Philip Wahab, a lawyer with no less than 20 years experience, has been able to sustain and expand the Jobs Initiative Lagos (JIL) in which over 40,000 students in their penultimate and final years across all Lagos State Tertiary Institutions have benefited from. Lagos State University under the supervision of Barrister Tokunbo Wahab as the Special Adviser to the Governor on Education, for Year 2020/2021, is ranked as the 2nd best University in Nigeria and one of the best 600 in the world.

He has also secured approval and  commenced the Construction of LASU 8,272-units hostel, 4000 units of 11 flats for workers and staff of Lagos State University to ease Accommodation problems of the staff/workers of the University, the project is about 80% completed through the Public/Privately Partnership that is ongoing in Lagos state. Also, a total of 184 Public School Libraries across the Six Educational Districts have been renovated, upgraded and digitized to the best the World class standard. Also, two Divisional Libraries, Epe and Badagry have been renovated and upgraded to the standard level for public use, while works are on going on other ones in other Divisions.

Barrister Wahab has also initiated and secured approval of Mr. Governor to build the world class standard Faculty of Education at LASU. On completion, LASU will the best Faculty of Education in Nigeria. In addition, Works is on going at the Lagos Business School established by the Lagos State Government. LASU Business School upon completion will compete with any Business School around the world. To help indigent students achieve their education dream, Barr. Tokunbo Wahab facilitated payment of N218, 795,000 to a total of 6,411students of Lagos State origin as Bursary, while he facilitated the sum of 217,732,955.44 as Scholarship award to 981 students from Lagos State in2020/2021 to assist their parents.

Recently, in line with the T.H.E.M.E.S strategic developmental agenda of improving Education and Technology in Lagos State and making Lagos a 21st Century Economy, he initiated the Eko Digital Initiative, a programme  that aims to equip 1 million Lagos residents with the knowledge of Coding, which will position our students for local and global opportunities. Hon. Wahab was instrumental to the just concluded creation of Two new Universities in Lagos State namely: Lagos State University of Science and Technology (LASUTECH) and a   University of Education (UNEDLAG).

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Princess (Mrs.) R.U. Osula Mku-Atu, Humanitarian Personality Of The Year

Princess (Mrs.) R. U. Osula Mku-Atu set up the Rosula Foundation principally as a vehicle through which her philanthropic endeavours are actualized. When the pandemic broke out in Nigeria, Rosula Foundation supported Edo State’s COVID-19 medical outreach, in addition to various foodstuff it shared to residents of Edo State.

Her foundation has also spent millions procuring and distributing food staples like rice, beans, garri, noodles, etc to the needy in the society.

She is also determined to help fight poverty with education through Rosula Foundation’s scholarship programme that provides opportunity for indigent students to study in private Nigeria Universities. Till date, hundreds of brilliant young kids that would have been out of school are graduates in medicine, engineering, law, and other sciences.

Her intervention has received accolades both within and outside Nigeria.

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Prince Saheed Adeyemi Arowosaye, Local Government Chairman Of The Year

It is on record that the Prince Saheed Arowosaye-led administration in Oyo East local government area prioritizes the security of lives and properties. Through dialogue and mediation, Arowosaye successfully resolved the long-running gang violence in the local government. He also strengthened the capacity of security agencies in the local government by providing them with logistics supports that enhance their ability to secure lives and properties. He has also commenced the installation of solar street lights in several flash points across the local government to curb the menace of criminals in those areas at the night and enable security agencies to effectively cover those areas.

Aware of the threat that unemployment especially among the young people poses to peace and security in the local government, Prince Arowosaye launched an empowerment programme that has so far directly empowered over 200 young people while ensuring that over 100 youths benefited from Agribusiness training held in Nasarawa State to enable them to start their own farming business. In addition, he also rolled out a cooperative society that gives short-term interest-free loans to traders and farmers.

The Oyo East local government area under the leadership of Arowosaye successfully reconstructed the burnt Akesan Market, transforming the historic market into a modern masterpiece. The Arowosaye-led leadership also constructed several drainage lines in various locations in the local government and rehabilitated many abandoned roads and local government-owned buildings. In addressing the perennial water scarcity in several communities in the local government, he repaired all community boreholes and provided new ones alongside power generating sets to ensure constant access of potable water. In conjunction with the state government, Arowosaye commenced the construction of a primary health centre in Alaodi area to boost health infrastructure and access to affordable and quality health care for residents of the local government.

He also organized free medical outreach in various communities in the local government and supported the aged in accessing free medical care. Some public primary schools also received a facelift with rehabilitation and provision of classroom furniture.  Arowosaye has continually supported farmers in the local government to increase their harvest and ensure food security in the local government with various initiatives.

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Still Earth Limited, Most Outstanding Construction Company

Still Earth Limited is a vibrant and progressive construction company deeply rooted in excellence, with projects executed with a guarantee of best practices and value engineering. Still Earth is implementing a wide range of projects furthermore positioning itself as one of the leading Engineering, Procurement & Construction (EPC) Company in Nigeria.

Still Earth Limited has a collective experience of over 10 years in civil construction, infrastructure and realty. Its portfolio includes distinguished construction capabilities and the company has successfully completed several prestigious projects. With its robust experience in building construction and realty, Still Earth Limited has excelled in projects in site preparation works, leveling work, reinforced concrete structures, multi-stored apartments, bricks masonry works industrial buildings, and interiors. As a distinguished contractor, Still Earth Limited has successfully executed numerous large civil works including bridges, road projects and more.

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Yusuf Ali (SAN), Most Outstanding Legal Luminary 

Yusuf Olaolu Ali (SAN) gained admission to the then University of Ife, now (Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife) in 1978 and graduated  with a 2nd Class Upper Division for his Bachelor of Laws degree. He was a winner of the prestigious Federal Merit Award for undergraduates and a University Scholar while an undergraduate at Ife. He attended the Nigerian Law School, where he also passed with a 2nd Class Upper Division.

About a decade after graduation, Yusuf Ali went back to his alma mater for his Masters programme which he completed with flying colours in 1991 when he bagged his LLM.  He was appointed by the Chief Justice of Nigeria in 1989, as a Notary Public. He attained the highest professional honor at the Nigerian Bar in 1997, when he was conferred with the prestigious and honorable title of Senior Advocate of Nigeria (S.A.N).

Yusuf Ali has been in active legal practice since the time he was called to the bar. He joined the law Firm of Adegboyega Awomolo & Co in 1983 and rose to become a partner before he left to found his own law Firm Ghalib chambers, in June 1994.

He is the Principal and founder of the Law Firm, Yusuf O. Ali & Co, Ghalib Chambers, with offices at Ilorin, Lagos and Abuja with Ilorin as the head office. A member of many professional bodies, Yusuf Ali has delivered more than 300  papers on different and diverse topics at various fora. He had contributed more than 20 Chapters to various legal books and has to his credit more than 40  published learned articles in learned journals in the field of litigation, Commercial Law, jurisprudence, practice and procedure, constitutional law, in local and international  law journals.  He is a litigator and arbitrator per excellence and has attended all the superior courts of record from the high courts to the Supreme Court  in the course of his over three decades of legal practice.  He has also acted as counsel and arbitrator in many arbitral proceedings. A visiting Research Fellow at Kings College, University of London UK, Yusuf Ali is knowledgeable in Islamic finance and jurisprudence.

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Prof. Joshua Olalekan Ogunwole, Most Outstanding Vice-Chancellor

Joshua Olalekan Ogunwole, the Vice Chancellor of Bowen University, iwo, Osun State, is a soil scientist with a broad background in sustainable agriculture, soil ecology, soil and water conservation, nutrient cycling and soil carbon sequestration. A professor of soil science since 2007, he has more than 20 years’ experience in dry-land farming, irrigation, and agroecology with research and expertise in soil quality improvement for raising ecosystem productivity and strengthening resilience of rural agrarian communities in North, East and West Africa.

Joshua has extensive experience in providing academic inputs for the in-Africa delivery of Seven Australia Awards Africa Fellowships and Short Courses, including: Dryland Farming, Soil and Water Conservation Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Resources Management for Agriculture in Tunisia, Kenya and Ethiopia.

He served twice as Selection Panel Member involved in the assessment, evaluation and recommendation of potential Awardees for final selection under the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)-funded Australia Awards Africa Fellowships and Short Courses in Dry-land Farming, and Soil and Water Conservation Agriculture. He has also taught several courses and led research on legumes and oil seeds-based crops in the dry lands.

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Rainoil Limited, Oil Company Of The Year

A prominent player in the Nigerian oil and gas industry, the Rainoil Group comprises businesses operations which span across the entire downstream value chain i.e, Petroleum Product Storage, Haulage/Distribution and Retail Sales. With a staff strength of over 1000, Rainoil Limited is a key indigenous player in the downstream sector.

24 years down the road, the company possesses assets comprising: 3 ultra-modern petroleum product storage depots:

▪ a 50 million litre capacity multi-product depot in Oghara, Delta State ▪ a 50 million litre capacity multi-product depot in the Calabar Free Trade Zone, Calabar, Cross River State.

▪ a 50 million litre capacity multi-product depot in Ijegun, Lagos, an 8,000 metric-tonne LPG storage and trucking facility in Ijegun, Lagos. Over 100 retail outlets spread across the country, strategically located in major cities such as Lagos, Abuja, Kaduna, Port Harcourt, Calabar, Uyo, Enugu, Onitsha, Asaba,

Makurdi, Sapele, Lafia, Keffi etc.

A fleet of over 130 tank trucks for efficient delivery of petroleum products to our network of stations and customers across the country. The CSR focus areas of the company are education, infrastructural development and medical aid. The financial interventions of the company have empowered and enabled the youth and underprivileged members of the society gain opportunities for medical aid and socio-economic

growth.

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Chain Reactions Nigeria, PR Company Of The Year

Chain Reactions Nigeria is not an agency, it is not just about PR. It is a solution provider, a storyteller that leverages research and insights to solve clients most complicated business problems.

Chain Reactions Nigeria opened for business as a small media services firm known as Image Savvy Ltd in 2006 with just two staff at inception. It evolved into an independent full service PR and Integrated Marketing Consultancy known as Chain Reactions Nigeria in 2010. it has since grown into a 32-strong army of creative rebels changing the ways PR is practised on the continent.

Chain Reactions Nigeria recognizes that to succeed today, organizations must do more than craft a compelling and consistent message. They must cultivate and manage relationships with an array of stakeholder groups via multiple channels in numerous geographies. Chain Reactions Nigeria is a rebel to traditions and conventions. Not only is Chain Reactions a Tribe of Consultants with relevant cumulative experience drawn from different fields of the integrated marketing communications, its differentiation lies in its integrated approach to managing PR and Reputation.

As an Intern-African PR and Integrated Communication Consultancy, Chain Reactions Nigeria is helping local and International clients understand the changing African audiences and trends while serving clients in different sectors in key African markets such as South Africa, Ghana, Kenya, Ethiopia, Zambia, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Cameroon etc. Leveraging its robust bouquet of expertise and network, Chain Reactions Nigeria is helping clients conquer markets in various sectors across the continent.

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Mr. Akintayo Adaralegbe, Real Estate Personality Of The Year

Mr. Akintayo Adaralegbe, the managing director and chief executive officer of T. Pumpy Concept Ltd is a household name in the real estate development in Nigeria, particularly in Abuja where his business headquarters is based, he controls no fewer than 28 estates units spread across the Federal Capital city, while ensuring that thousands of Abuja residents have access to houses of their own.

Adaralegbe, renowned for his expertise in real estate, has eminent personalities and celebrities endorsing him as one of the best around.

Adaralegbe’s T. Pumpy Concept, aiming for global recognition, has the expertise in building to the highest quality standards which is evident in its lines of estate constructed in a factory environment with a team experienced in proven industry-acclaimed off-site home design and construction.

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Otunba Wasiu Jayeola Taiwo, Special Recognition Award For Excellence In Fashion

Otunba Wasiu Jayeola Taiwo popularly known as Wessy, rose from grass to grace through a profession he loves with a high taste for creativity and astuteness. His humble beginning started at Ilaro in Yewa South Local Government of Ogun State in the early sixties.

A fashion designer of international repute, a kind-hearted philanthropist, Otunba Taiwo is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Wessy Tailoring & Vocational Institute and Wessy Creations Nigeria Limited, based in Abeokuta, Ogun State. Otunba Taiwo also superintends other chains of business such as Continental Suites, Chicken Continental and Continental Bread in Ilaro, also in Ogun State.

Currently the national president of the Tailors Association of Nigeria, Otunba Taiwo’s popular fashion outfit ‘Wessy Creations’ is sought after by high net-worth individuals who cherish taste and class as well as corporate entities. With his profound creativity and impeccable styles, Wessy, as he is fondly called, has grown to be one of the top names in the tailoring industry. As a result of his unique and exceptional designs, Wessy has attracted recognition globally through invitations to participate at world class exhibitions.

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Hon Segun Olulade, Special Recognition Award For Excellence In Politics

Hon Segun Olulade ventured into politics having succeeded in waste management business. He placed himself under the mentorship of his role model, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and broke the jinx to get peoples’ mandate to become the first person to represent his constituency (Epe Constituency II) two times consecutively in the Lagos State House of Assembly.

Hon Olulade who had a humble beginning, activated his potentials to a substantial status to achieve the following in public service, among others: he is former Chairman of the House Committee on Health Services in the 8th Assembly; former Chairman House Committee on Information, Strategy, Security and Publicity in the 7th Assembly; mover of the first motion in indigenous language and pioneer of motion compelling the teaching of indigenous language in all Primary and Secondary schools in Lagos State; mover of the motion for immortalization of the late Afrobeat Legend and social crusader and Fela Anikulapo Kuti; first lawmaker in Nigeria to start informative radio programme called ‘Eleniyan Gbode’ as constituents’ feedback and engagement programme; founder of Eleniyancares Leadership Foundation which partners London School of Economics in England and Leadership Institute Virginia in the United States of America. The foundation has supported over 5,000 youths in mentoring, capacity building and education scholarships (local and foreign).

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Bukola Olopade, Sports Personality Of The Year

That increased enthusiasm and renewed passion for athletics seem to be staging a comeback in the Nigerian sports circle is a credit to a seasoned sports administrator like Bukola Olopade whose contributions to the rising profile of sports cannot be underestimated. It took Bukola many years to arrive at this enviable position where is regarded as the go-to man as far as long distance races and athletics is concerned in Nigeria.

One good example of sports revival in Nigeria is the popular Access Bank Lagos City Marathon, which undoubtedly has put Nigeria in the global spotlight. Thanks to the behind-the-scenes efforts of Bukola Olopade, the managing director of Nilayo Sports Management Limited, a thriving sports management company with excellent track record in organizing and hosting of world class sporting events. Bukola’s name first made headlines when he assumed office as one of the youngest commissioners in Ogun State in the administration of Otunba Gbenga Daniel. Bukola’s magic wand turned around the sports sector in Ogun state in less than four years.

Some of Bukola’s legacies include the hosting of the first ever Ogun State National Sports Festival tagged Gateway Games, establishment of the state’s owned football club, Gateway FC and so many other accomplishments. Not one to run away from challenges, Bukola brilliantly moved on to greater things. One of his other successes in the sports arena was the JAC Motors Abeokuta 10km Race, which changed the face of sporting events in Ogun State. Bukola has successfully created the biggest marathon events in Nigeria; the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon, Airtel Ijebu Half Marathon, Bigi Abeokuta 10km race, amongst others. Right from his humble beginnings, Bukola has demonstrated a glimpse of greatness with historic accomplishments in the history of sports administration. That singular assignment shot him into purposeful limelight and since then it has been a story of onwards and upwards for the energetic sports administrator per excellence.

-report by Folorunsho Hamsat, photos by Adekola Bamgbala

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