There is an irrevocable certitude in the currency of existential humanism: universalism in the multitudinous profundity of the celebration of the bullishness of Dr. Michael Adeniyi Agbolade Ishola Adenuga, GCON, CSG, CdrLH. Here is an Adonis who has done prodigious things that will outlive him.
This preface is rooted in the fact that this sturdy Tarzan of our time is blessed with global, boundless and borderless visionary instincts that define his trajectories, institutional conquistador and multifarious other involvements in all spheres of life, particularly entrepreneurial sagacity and philanthropic incomparability.
Another point to underscore as we voyage into the confounding world of our country’s hardy Hercules, who is 68 years old today, is his illuminative leadership which he brings to bear on his exponential conglomerate in Africa and beyond the continental shores. People cannot stop wondering about things that make this recluse mogul especial and tick that competition keeps trailing him perpetually to no avail! His robust impact on the totality of humanistic endeavours in this part of the world is unassailably immeasurable.
A doughty icon of explorative diligence and a generational role model whose assiduity results in interminably unparalleled attainments that exemplify unimaginable audacity which only his like can hallmark, today’s celebrator has an intriguingly intimidating persona that has defied rationalization by one and all. He savours motivating and challenging people on grounds of his time-tested belief that nothing is impossible.
This broad-shouldered, barrel-chested and mesomorphic Samson of our generation is so reserved and abhors publicity so much that some of the things inevitably written by a few of us who are beneficiaries of his superlative compassion are put together at our own risk that could evoke his anger on a bad day! But, how else do we show appreciation for his endlessly critical interventions in our lives without periodical tributes like this and others infrequently? This writer is a major signpost of his robust beneficence—which is no longer news as almost everyone already knows. I am so appreciative that in the past two years I did back-to-back centerspread birthday congratulatory advertorials in this racy medium to celebrate our own Amazonian Atlas. COVID-19 has terribly affected my occupational engagements and multiple streams of income that I am, regrettably, unable to do what they call a ‘hat-trick’ (third goal in a game) in football terminology.
As I traditionally take off my hat today to this brawny Titan, in celebration of his 68th birthday, I hope I had not in the past anniversary commemorations invaded his precious privacy by my outpouring of well-deserved encomiums on this sinewy tower of strength and raising other tangential issues concerning him. I make this avowal because, as I mentioned earlier, Chairman does not subscribe to public acknowledgment or demonstrative gratitude in any form for his innumerable philanthropic gestures. Issuing from the above, if that had inadvertently happened, it should be considered the last act of blissful ignorance that is foreclosed!
I have so written about The Guru that many people have gone under the illusion that I may have cousinship relationship with the Iroko of benevolence. Therefore, most people who need his charity or even have business ideas get in touch with me through the instrumentality of my toll-free Glo line that is displayed online and offline via my multi-media columns. Always, I manage them to the best of my ability knowing full well the tightly-structured and strict disposition of Uncle Niyi to issues generally, be they classifiable or nondescript.
In any case, I do not have telephonic or physical access—like most other 95 percentage Nigerians—to my greatest benefactor, but his love for me is indescribable amid quintessentially dazzling generosity. The withdrawal strategic compass which is the fulcrum of the entirety of his modus operandi has worked for him over the decades and keeps navigating his thrusts. Overall, I let such inquisitors and charity seekers—mostly—know that this man of unimaginable compassion has his own terms and conditions (as they say) in his inter-relationship inclination. Nobody can stampede him into doing anything. ‘Who the hell is that person’ that can cajole/influence this man of taciturnity?
For me, particularly, it is the hallmark of disrespect, distraction and abuse of privileged intimacy calling the sturdy Guru. SMS is even worse! Wait a minute, what will be the subject? If he wants (not needs) me at all for anything, the ‘boys’ in Chairman’s office would gladly do the needful.
Despite whatever relationship you have with Nna mu Ukwu, you dare not bring your personal challenges to him for whatever reason, let alone another person’s! The moment you futilely try that, you incur his wrath because the all-round czar does not have time for inanities from any quarter! He is essentially engrossed in the totality of his multi-billion-dollar establishments as to have utopian space for irrelevancies, dependencies, beggarliness and slothfulness.
It is an indelible record that Dr. Adenuga personally gave me the rarest opportunities—from nowhere—to work in two of his blue-chip companies from where I was able, after seven years, to buy my five-flat Surulere home which today houses four tenants and my family. When colleagues of mine call me Omo Baba because of my unflinching articles on him and Globacom occasionally, I gladly acknowledge the great privilege. In the same vein, I have lost count of the mouth-watering dole-outs to me that conventionally stagger because of their digital levels! God will continue to bless and keep our wiry Chairman for those of us who have monumentally experienced him and potential beneficiary prospects. If you really get to meet this God-send Guru and thereafter you are still ravaged by poverty, it means you need an especial vigil, redemptive anointing, deliverance and holistic emancipation from ancestral-cum-generational curses, possibly! I am not kidding!
One of the copious instructive things I have learned from this telephony icon is his unwavering commitment to addressing friendship issues at all layers. For him, old friends seem incomparable to new ones whom he needs to study and come to terms with unlike old ones whose attitudinal/behavioural templates and character profiles he already has. He probably subscribes to the philosophy that nothing is greater or better than true friendship.
Chairman has satisfied countless Nigerians in various hues (many of whom I know right from my days in his bank) and foreigners in his employ. Those who may be obstreperously dissatisfied with him must be in the minority. Of course, nobody can please everybody no matter how the person tries. And the interesting thing is that our celebrator who has excessive faith in himself continually confounds his detractors and delights his friends irrespective of their obvious rudimentary status! I keep asking: who in this world can do any favour to this Great Commander who is a multi-billionaire by British net-worth standard?
The strength and constancy of this giant’s philanthropy cannot be pigeon-holed as he wishes because this gestural component of his life has become an integral aspect of his essence as he takes greater joy in loving than being beloved, if you get my drift. Our Big Boss does not like appreciative ceremonies and any form of public acknowledgment involving his seamless philanthropy. Nevertheless, a few of us shall, in perpetuity and at our own peril, celebrate his illimitable compassion for mankind that exudes consanguinity.
Sir, as you ruminate over life today, your sovereignty over opulence and optimal health crowned by longevity will be sharpened by His awesomeness, blessings, almightiness and grace. And so shall it be!