WHEN we went for the inauguration of the Romanesque Editors’ House in Ikeja, Lagos, not long ago, I met telecommunications editor extraordinaire, Otunba (Comrade) Goke Odeyinka, a friend of mine and colleague of more than three decades. The moment he saw me with Mr. Femi Adesina, who I was exchanging pleasantries with, he exhilaratingly joined us and sarcastically addressed me as “Omo Adenuga” (meaning Adenuga’s child)!
I gladly accepted the rare compliment. Who will not acknowledge such a privileged association? Of course, I did not ask him to explicate because the reasons for such a declaration were obvious to me and should be to anyone who has followed my profound relationships with The Guru. I wonder what Ogbeni Goke would call Oga Bode Opeseitan who is more than “Omo Baba” in all ramifications! “Uncle Bode” will be the subject of another day.
By this time of the year, usually, I should have bought the most expensive Christmas card at Stop Centre and an 18-carat Mont Blanc gold pen from The Pen Shop, both on Victoria Island, and sent to Dr. Mike Adenuga Jr., GCON, but knowing full well the institutional mechanics and the unwritten organizational philosophy in the Mike Adenuga Group, the card and pen will never get to him for very peculiar reasons! Therefore, I am compelled to use this medium to wish him Merry Xmas and a most prosperous New Year. Uncle Niyi deserves much more than these few words of mine, considering the invaluable things he has done—and still does—for me.
I should have published this message next Monday being the last Monday in 2016 but I would likely use that day to commemorate my father’s translation on December 26, 1986, and other end-of-year miscellanies/2017 resolutions-cum-projections. And, hopefully, give my life to Christ that day or thereabouts after much backsliding and interminable vacillation.
When a man of philanthropic superfluity and superlative humaneness transforms your life to the point of poverty extirpation and foreclosure, you cannot avoid remembering him almost every moment of your life! This simply captures this unfolding narrative you are reading. Dr. Adenuga’s consanguineous compassion for humanity and me particularly is universally unparalleled.
Just two core reasons that have made the principal promoter of Globacom an integral component of my existential humanism: he offered me employment on a platter in Equitorial Trust Bank (ETB)—the bank that worked until Sanusi Lamido Sanusi as maverick governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria abruptly ruptured it—and Globacom, the largest data network where I worked as a Public Relations Manager.
While in ETB years back, colleagues of mine in the Corporate Affairs Department located at the head office annex on Plot 308 Akin Olugbade Street, Off Adeola Odeku, Victoria Island, and other co-workers equally described me most times as “Chairman’s boy” for multifarious reasons that are not icons for this celebratory article.
For me, the ascription was gladly welcome and occasionally leveraged upon to catalyze official briefs!
The second greater reason is his astounding intervention on the occasion of my third book public presentation last year at the Bolaji Akinyemi Auditorium, Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, Kofo Abayomi, Victoria Island, Lagos. At the mention of the unrivalled gesture, the entirety of the sizeable audience, including eminent personalities on the podium, was speechlessly dazzled and dazed!
At the book launch, Dr. Adenuga sent three top managers from Globacom, led by Mr. Opeseitan, to fully participate at the event. Not only did he send the high-powered delegation, he equipped them with two precious items from the Office of the Chairman enveloped and personally endorsed by him in his typical romantic handwriting: his golden call-card and a very fat cheque that has transformed my life beyond measure! I had never seen such an exponential gift in one tranche in all my three-decade-plus multifarious occupational engagements. When I handed over the robust package to my wife in the hall, she screamed joyfully and became justifiably hilarious. Her only utterance: “God will bless this man more and more”!
Of course, the envelope and complimentary card have become treasured memorabilia in my well-stocked, spacious library adjacent to my aristocratic and seductive sitting-room with a mini-swimming pool and illuminative lighting—thanks to my principal, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu, who partly financed the splendorous architectural engineering.
It is for the foregoing and other illimitable reasons that I will continually celebrate Dr. Adenuga. His astonishing gift to me has unwittingly become a component of my sub-consciousness that every time I think of my parentage the next filial feeling that pleasurably comes to one’s mind is my all-time hero, the recluse we call “The Bull”.
Let me also underscore the point that for some years now I have been on Globacom toll-free line. What this simply means is that I am exclusively hooked on to the Nigerian brand. As you read this, I have approximately N100,000 renewable credit on the above line. Do I equally need to add that there is a free synergy between this and my glo bolt mobile internet facility which is effective, efficient and un-matched in terms of data cost and optimal service delivery, especially speed. Overall, I have not had anything to do with other GSM and internet platforms since the revolutionary emergence of Globacom.
From my industry research, no other network has two-way wireless connectivity with 4G and Mobile Wi-Fi that connect up to 10 Wi-Fi-enabled devices simultaneously. This is not marketing propaganda: you need to experience it. Even competition acknowledges this irrefutable fact.
Merry Christmas and a blissful New Year to my unequalled and unsurpassable benefactor and global entrepreneurial enigma, Uncle Niyi (also known as “Okunri Meta”), my incomparable egbon whose boundless love for me is exceedingly greater than the borderless love of a man for a woman!
As I declared in an earlier full-page tribute last year in this medium, there has been no man of holistic quintessence, inimitable compassion and philanthropic satiety of immeasurability like the one we fondly call “Baba” and there may never be! Who the hell will that ever be on the African continent nay the world? May God continue to prosper you.
It is my supplication that divine light will perpetually shine on your way and navigate all your trajectories in the New Year and in the decades ahead!
For the Opeseitans
ACCORDING to Thomas Fuller, a man’s best fortune, or his worst, is his wife. For one of the biggest “boys” in Globacom, Mr. Olabode Opeseitan, I can affirm that his fortune is quintessential from the way he furiously reacted in Globacom’s PR office the day I asserted that most Yoruba chaps marry ugly ladies!
“You need to see my wife”, my former boss exclaimed angrily! I wish Oga Bode and his pulchritudinous damsel of a wife, Adebimpe (Ashabs), more romantic marital years on the occasion of their 18th Wedding Anniversary last Monday. If I were Bimpe’s daddy, Bode would upscale her bride price as they do in contract (spousal) variation!
For being “the angel of Bode’s life”, according to him on facebook, this delectable lady deserves angelic affection by the main “Omo Baba”, the most prominent Chairman’s “boy” in whom Baba is well pleased! Congratulations, Oga Bode, as I await your wedding commemorative package.