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Food for Living: The Risk of Success



By Henry Ukazu

Greetings Friends,

Great minds who have truly achieved genuine success have one great trait- risk taking. They are risk takers. They know very well true success involves a lot of work and these have their ups and down which add up to their success story when they break even or break through. As rational beings, we are always cautious in life because we don’t want to make mistakes. Sometimes, we are anxious about what the future holds, and other times we tend to follow our instincts. One thing is certain however, we are all taking risks because we are not guaranteed anything even if we dot our Is and cross our Ts. The truth is nobody is guaranteed anything in life because anything can happen within a twinkle of an eye.

Every great person has one guiding philosophy, and that is, it makes no sense to think little; if you must think, think big. Ben Carson in his book, Think Big, made us to understand that our dreams are valid and can come true if we play by the rules and work smart and hard. Carson is one of the greatest surgeons in the world. After he made history in the world by successfully separating a Siamese twins, the world literally stood still for him. It should be noted that performing that surgery wasn’t really easy. He had to put in so many hours of research and risk before he was success reckoned with him.

Risk is a very important part of success in business and life generally. One needs to take reasonable risk to succeed. It will be right to say life itself is a gamble, and if life is a gamble, then we must take the risk (gamble) to succeed. It’s worthy to note that the fear of taking risk is risk itself. We all have taken risk in one way or another; at one time or another. In business, we explore some path which might be unconventional; in a relationship, we relate and live with people we don’t really know. In health, we literally take pills and believe it will heal us in addition to putting our trust in doctors with the hope they will “heal” us. Even the food we eat is risk because we don’t know who prepared it and how it was prepared. You can literally see that life indeed, is a risk.

In order to discuss the rationality of our risk, we shall be looking at the component parts of risk and how we can take advantage of risk to succeed. During the course of this article, we shall be focusing more on the advantages of risk, and how risk can facilitate our success.

We are always inspired by people who go beyond the norm, and push the boundaries of possibility. This is because they live in the realm of possibility and greatness. They are not afraid to live beyond their boundaries. To them, there is no such thing as failure; only experiments that didn’t work! Risk-takers are marked by a sense of adventure and passion. They care little for the accolades of the crowd. They are not afraid to “boldly go where no one has gone before.

You may have heard of the terminology, take the risk and join the millionaires. If I may ask, what do you stand to gain if you don’t take risk? I guess you will literally be in the same position. So why not give it shot? Do you know that the fear of taking risk is risk itself? According to Mark Zuckerberg, “the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.” If you refuse to take any risk in your life, you will pass up every opportunity in front of you in favour of a stable, certain future. That stability may be comforting, but it won’t provide you with growth or advancement in any dimension”.

Henry Ford would never have invented the automobile if he had paid attention to his critics. David would never have defeated Goliath if he had allowed his own family to discourage him. Personally, I took a risk in publishing my book without knowing what will be the outcome. I had fear of typographical errors, grammatical errors, layout, content, graphics and the general production of the book. To a great extent, I was thinking what will people think about my book? The list is endless, but guess what, it came out really good and it has become the biggest achievement in my life which has given me the biggest opportunity and fame.

There is no major success without risk. Many people have goals. Only a few ever achieve them. Very few people have the gut to take the risk to truly succeed. Every major breakthrough in history – in business, science, medicine, sports, etc. – is the result of an individual who took a risk and refused to play safe. Their innovation is the result of their adventurous spirit. They invent, achieve, surpass, and succeed because they dare to live beyond the realm of normal.

Let’s see some of the advantages of taking risk in life.

·  Great, otherwise unforeseen opportunities often come from risk-taking. You must truly dare to succeed.

·  Taking risks shows confidence and helps you stand out.

·  We learn from risks — and those lessons may lead us on an important, new experience. If you try something new and you didn’t succeed, don’t think you failed, rather see it like you had an experience.

·  Success won’t fall in your lap — you have to pursue it by stepping out of your comfort zone.  Moral: You don’t achieve your dreams by playing safe. Successful people thread uncommon paths many people dare to take.

·  Embracing risk-taking helps you overcome a fear of failure. In life, you either succeed or fail. It’s either a yes or no answer. If you don’t take risk you might not succeed, if you take the risk you might succeed, so either way, it’s good to take the risk and experience the outcome.

The question now is, what kind of risk are you suppose to take? The major difference between great minds and ordinary people is that great minds take a calculated risk. They explore so many options available to them by testing the waters with one foot by questioning their minds: What’s the best-case scenario? What’s the worst-case scenario; What’s the most likely scenario? These are what sets great and ordinary people apart. They don’t follow the bandwagon. They create their own path. One of my inspirational mentors who took a calculated risk is Tony Elumelu. He was the driving force behind the rise of the United Bank of Africa. He has proved his passion for risking by empowering successful applicants to this foundation program (Tony Elumelu Foundation) with $5,000 non-refundable seed capital to grow their entrepreneurial business. Great risk takers may act and sound silly in the eyes of men, but deep down their heart, they have an idea of what they are working on. Their strongest strength comes from the fact they are passionate about what they are doing and therefore they go the extra mile.  But what sets successful people apart from others is that after they have conducted their research, they ACT! They take the leap.

Financially, successful people are not afraid to invest in themselves. I once read an article of a great entrepreneur who took the risk to pay a huge sum of money to learn from an investor coach who is very big on marketing. Ordinary, that was a huge sum of money he paid because the organizers of the event would have disappeared or  package a program which might not have more to offer just the usual sweet talk from marketers to promote their business, but guess what, after three months of studying the product, his profit rose to about 200% every quarter of the year and in three years, he began to earn millions of dollars. This is another great example of the power of investors.

My question is, are you willing to take a risk to succeed?

Henry Ukazu writes from New York. He works with New York City Department of Correction as the legal Coordinator. He’s the author of the acclaimed book Design Your Destiny – Actualizing Your Birthright To Success.

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Insecurity: FG Resuscitates Special Terrorism Prosecution Courts



Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, has said that special terrorism prosecution courts will soon be resuscitated in Nigeria.

In a statement on Thursday, Special Assistant on Media and Public Relations to the AGF, Umar Gwandu, said the decision is part of efforts to address insecurity.

“The federal government is committed to ending insecurity in the country. The courts are to bring to book all those found guilty in connection with terrorism, so as to serve as a deterrent to others,” the statement read.

“In addition to the prosecution of 400 suspected Boko Haram financiers, the measures taken by the government will counter the twin trouble of insurgency and insecurity in the country.”

On April 30, 2013, Ibrahim Auta, the former chief judge of the federal high court, made a practice direction that amended the order 48 rule 4 of the federal high court (civil procedure) rule 2009, which took effect on June 3, 2013.

The practice direction was intended to fast-track criminal trials relating to offences of terrorism, kidnapping, trafficking in persons, rape, corruption, and money laundering cases, and ensure that delays in criminal trials are largely eliminated.

Under this practice, the court shall ensure that criminal cases are fully ready for trial before hearing dates are agreed, in order to minimise undue adjournments and delays.

Parties involved in the trials are also expected to focus only on important matters relating to their cases.

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$65m Fraud: ICPC Declares Buhari’s Son-in-Law Wanted



The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has declared Gimba Yau Kumo, son-in-law of President Muhammadu Buhari, wanted over an alleged $65 million fraud.

In a notice published on Thursday, Azuka Ogugua, spokesperson of the anti-graft commission, said Kumo is declared wanted alongside Tarry Rufus and Bola Ogunsola over alleged misappropriation and dispersion of national housing funds.

Kumo, a former managing director of the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria, married Fatima, the president’s daughter, in 2016 at Daura, Katsina state.

“The persons whose pictures appear above, Mr. Tarry Rufus, Mr. Gimba Yau Kumo and Mr. Bola Ogunsola, are hereby declared WANTED by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) in connection with issues bordering on misappropriation of National Housing Funds and diversion of the sum of Sixty Five Million dollars ($65,000,000),” the ICPC said.

“Anyone who has useful information on their whereabouts should report to ICPC Headquarters Abuja, any of the ICPC State Offices or the nearest police station.”

In April, the senate committee on public accounts summoned Kumo to explain the alleged irregular award of N3 billion contract when he was still at the bank.


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Igbo Aren’t Violent People, Ignore ‘Rumour’ of Attack on Lagos – Ohanaeze Tells Sanwo-Olu



Apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has asked Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to ignore threats of attacks on the state.

On Monday, Hakeem Odumosu, Lagos commissioner of police, said the command is probing threats of attacks by the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Oodua Republic agitators.

The groups have, however, denied the allegations.

Speaking at a meeting with Sanwo-Olu at the Lagos government house on Thursday, George Obiozor, Ohanaeze president-general, said the “rumour” is intended to distract the governor from delivering good governance to the people.

Obiozor said Igbo people are not known for acts of violence.

“Today, the leadership of Ohanaeze Ndigbo worldwide, in the company of Igbo elders and leaders in Lagos, are here to pay you (Sanwo-Olu) a solidarity visit and to further reassure you that Ndigbo are not violent in nature, neither are we known for acts of violence anywhere we live,” Gboyega Akosile, chief press secretary to the governor, quoted Obiozor as saying.

“[On] the constant and periodic dangerous insinuations, rumour, gossip and callous statements that Ndigbo in Lagos or any part of Yorubaland contemplate or instigate violence in Lagos or any part of Yorubaland, we wish to state clearly that anywhere this dangerous rumour or statement is emanating from is aimed to cause division, crises and conflict amongst us.

“We think that this rumour is intended to distract the Lagos State Government from its efforts to provide good governance for all and cause disaffection between Ndigbo who live in Lagos and their host community, which is the second home of several Ndigbo.

“The quick denial of this rumour by members of IPOB and Yoruba groups in Lagos and across the south-west was a source of relief.

“The Igbo nation is renowned for being agents of development, not destruction. Ndigbo are builders and their contributions to the development of Lagos State are evident and exemplary.”

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