Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
The Chief Official Photographer to President Muhammadu Buhari, Bayo Omoboriowo, has renovated some blocks of classrooms and distributed 1000 fully loaded school bags and writing materials at Ijero High School in Ekiti State.
Using his foundation Bayo Omoboriowo Foundation, Omoboriowo said the project (‘School Action Programme’) was done within one month to transform his local community, with a focus on education.
The President’s photographer, who said he has been involved in philanthropy since the age of 18, both in Ekiti and Lagos states, explained that he has initiated social-impact projects utilising his primary talent – Photography and other creative expressions – as a tool for intervention.
Bayo, who declined to mention the cost involved, said the focus of his interventions has evolved in recent years into more tangible actions driven largely by “my commitment to contribute my quota towards improving the socio-economic index of target area: Nigeria’s youth.”
The photographer said he was compelled to give back to society, especially students, because God had favoured him by affording him with the privilege to work with President Buhari.
The Buhari aide said “Bayo Omoboriowo Foundation was birthed as a response to one man’s unwavering desire to continually seek improvements in the general well-being of not just himself, but his immediate environment and society at large.”
The project will serve as a springboard for other interventions in Ekiti and across Nigeria, Omoboriowo said.
The Ekiti State Governor, Kayode Fayemi, who commissioned the project on Monday, emphasised the need for private sector collaboration in ensuring a better community for all.
He commended Omoboriowo for supporting the efforts of the state government, whilst making a call to well meaning Nigerians to ensure that they partner with government at all levels to ensure that the benefits of democracy reach every nook and cranny of the country.
Fayemi called on all indigenes of the state to emulate the philanthropic gestures of Omoboriowo.
At a ceremony attended by first class traditional rulers, community and political leaders in the state, the Governor charged others in the state to join hands with his administration to develop Ekiti as the task of development cannot be left to the government alone, he said.
“This state belongs to all of us. You know what they say about a village bringing up a child and taking a community to build a state. So what Bayo (Omoboriowo) has done is examplary and I think that other public spirited Ekiti sons and daughters, Ekiti residence, Ekiti lovers should also consider and do within their own various areas of jurisdictions,” the Governor stated.
“Bayo is not a school teacher but he was brought up by teachers and that is why he felt he needed to give back and went to Kabiyesi to discuss the possibility of giving back to schools in the society. Look at what he has done. I encourage all Ekiti indigenes, wherever they may be based, you don’t even have to have gone to school in Ekiti; those who have even gone to school in Ekiti are even more compelled to do so. I see a lot of alumni association doing that; they are all contributing their quota. But individuals can also adopt a school,” he said.