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From Zero to Hero: A Noble Transitional Reminder!

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By Tolulope A. Adegoke 

“I need to reiterate here that, when it comes to this noble task, nothing is impossible! Only change is constant in life. Everyone can improve at anything and at whatever level, provided that he or she is willing enough to undergo the required processes of development. My point is that your life can experience a revolutionary change, as long as you are ready to learn, follow the footsteps of champions and apply other essential life-changing principles from the Holy Scriptures and other relevant sources.” –  Tolulope A. Adegoke

The example of Japan is pertinent here. In the aftermath of the Second World War, Japan’s two largest economic cities, Hiroshima and Nagasaki, were bombed to the ground. Several lives and properties were lost. To put it simply, Japan was reduced to nearly nothing, economically and politically.

Yet, because the Japanese believe so much in their individual and national potentials, they have rebuilt their economy to be one of the best in the world. In fact, in the early 2000s, a Prime Minister of the country, while speaking at the anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombing, said that even if Japan were to be placed in a desert, the Japanese would rebuild their nation to become the second largest economy in the world in a short time.

The truth of that statement can be seen all around – especially with the quality and quantity of products manufactured in Japan. In fact, even though Japan currently does not have enough steel to produce vehicle bonnets, nor does it have enough silicon to produce side-mirrors or even enough rubber to produce steering-wheels, yet the country is the highest exporter of cars in the world.

My point is that Japan rose to be an economic giant from being reduced to zero. Despite the odds and pains, it ascended the ladder of greatness among the nations of the world. This teaches us the power of resilience. Every zero status can be reversed if dutifully worked upon.

The wealth of any individual or nation is not found under the feet but in-between the “ears” – that is, the contents of their brain and character. Let’s apply this to Nigeria as a nation, especially to re-orientate its leaders and citizens, the young ones in particular.  The real wealth of Nigeria is not in the creeks of the Niger-Delta or anywhere else in the country. It is neither in the abundance of crude oil nor in the vast mineral resources all over the country. The real wealth lies in the country’s heterogeneous population.  Yes, let me repeat it – It is the very citizens of the Nigerian nation that are usually considered the least of its resources (the zero resources) that are its hope and future.  This is because right in them lie the ability, acumen and determination to harness and utilise the various natural, mineral and petroleum resources of the nation in line with God’s purpose for its existence.

In truth, the so-called valuable resources that people often jostle and sometimes tussle to get from the ground are not the real resources of any nation; the true resources are the citizens – the often overlooked treasures who have several divinely-endowed potentials in them. Sadly, many of these die daily, before their time, and go the grave with their potentials in them. No wonder the late Myles Munroe said that the richest place on earth is the cemetery!

Pertinent Reassurance

Before proceeding to the next phase in which we shall be exploring detailed principles on positively empowering our zeroes, I need to reiterate here that, when it comes to this noble task, nothing is impossible! Only change is constant in life. Everyone can improve at anything and at whatever level, provided that he or she is willing enough to undergo the required processes of development.

My point is that your life can experience a revolutionary change, as long as you are ready to learn, follow the footsteps of champions and apply other essential life-changing principles from the Scripture and other relevant sources.

Let me illustrate this truth with the experience of D.W Ghent who was said to have participated in Dale Carnegie’s public speaking programme in Philadelphia. Shortly after the opening session, Ghent had invited Carnegie to lunch with him in the manufacturers’ club. Ghent was a middle-aged man and had always led an active life; he was head of his own manufacturing establishment and a leader in church work and civic activities. While they were having lunch that day, he leaned across the table and said: “I have been asked many times to talk before various gatherings, but I have never been able to do so: I get so fussed, my mind becomes an utter blank: So I have side-stepped it all my life. But I am now on a board of college trustees. I must preside at their meetings. I simply have to do some talking…Do you think that is possible for me to learn at this late date in my life?”

“Do I think, Mr Ghent?” Carnegie replied. “It is not a question of my thinking. I know you can, and I know you will if you only practise and follow the directions and instructions.”

Mr Ghent wanted to believe what Carnegie had said, but it seemed too rosy, too optimistic. So he said, “I am afraid you are you are just being kind; you are merely trying to encourage me.”

After Mr Ghent had completed his training, he and Dale Carnegie lost touch with each other for a while.

Some years later, however, they met again and lunched together at the Manufacturers’ Club. They sat in the same corner and occupied the same table that they had on the first occasion. Reminding Ghent of their former conversation, Carnegie asked him if he really had been too optimistic then. Ghent took a little red-backed notebook out of his pocket and showed him a list of talks and dates for which he had been booked. “And the ability to make these,” he confessed, “the pleasure I get in doing it, the additional service I can render to the community – these are among the most gratifying things in my life. Not only have I given countless public speeches, but just recently I was chosen from all the community leaders in this city to give the introduction when David Lloyd George (then the Prime minister of Great Britain) addresses a mass meeting in Philadelphia.”

Yet, this was the same man who had sat at the same table less than three years before and solemnly asked Carnegie if he would ever be able to talk in public!

We find another amazing proof that nothing is impossible when it comes to transiting from a zero to a hero in the case of the biblical David. The inspiring story of his rise from a despised shepherd boy to a renowned warrior and revered king begins from I Samuel 16. Here, we are told how God, who had seen his commitment to duty and passion for service in the loneliness of the mountains and valleys where he cared for his father’s sheep, sent Samuel to anoint him Israel’s next king, following the rejection of Saul. Being the family’s zero, however, nobody had initially considered presenting David as one of the sons of Jesse – yet the Almighty God who rewards enthusiasm for greatness found him out and he was anointed. It was after this that he killed Goliath before the Philistines and the Israelites. He became a military general of Israel at the very tender age of 17.

David eventually ascended the throne, despite various attempts by Saul to kill him. He started as a zero but eventually emerged a hero! He diligently went through the rough but refining and toughening process of his transition through his strength of character, fear of God, unwavering courage and undaunted self-belief.

I tell you, friend, you too can rise from your present level to an exceedingly glorious and influential one. This is the will of God for you.

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Appeal Court Overrules Judgement Against Zenith Bank, Fines Real Integrated

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After several months of legal tussle between Zenith Bank Plc v Real Integrated & Hospitality Limited and State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) Gombe State, a three-man panel in the Court of Appeal sitting in Lagos led by Justice Muhammed Sirajo in Appeal No:CA/LAG/CV/262/2022 – have unanimously upturned the Lagos State High Court judgment of Justice O. O. Abike-Fadipe over claims that; on March 8, 2022, there was a breach of contract because on October 7, 2011, Zenith Bank refused Real Integrated to withdraw from its Account No. 1012465427. In her judgment, she directed Zenith bank to pay an interest of 15 per cent per annum on the N872,780,522.84 from May 17, 2011, when the advanced payment guarantees expired till judgment and thereafter at the rate of 10 per cent per annum until final liquidation

Through Zenith Bank’s team of counsel led by Prof. Fabian Ajogwu, SAN and Mr Sylva Ogwemoh, SAN, the bank challenged Justice O. O. Abike-Fadipe’s decision of awarding N2,500,000 as the cost of the action in favour of Real Integrated. The legal team via valid argument backed by proofs argued and sought an order setting aside the lower court decision on the ground that it acted in full compliance with its contractual obligations in line with the Advanced Payment Guarantee (APG) contract and that the trial court was wrong. The Court of Appeal, in a unanimous decision on November 23, agreed with the bank’s submission and resolved all the issues raised in its favour. It was gathered that; the 1st Respondent, through its Counsel, E.O Jakpa, argued that the bank breached the contract while SUBEB Gombe State did not contest the Appeal.

Apart from the appellate court setting aside the judgment of Justice Abike-Fadipe, the judge also awarded a cost of N200,000 against Real Integrated & Hospitality Limited and in favour of Zenith Bank. The appeal court further stated that the lower court judgment was upturned on the ground that the trial court was wrong to have presumed that the bank withheld the full account statement of Real Integrated in the light of Exhibit C6 (the comprehensive Statement of Account of Real Integrated), which was tendered by the bank for a limited purpose, adding that there was no need for the lower court to have invoked Section 167 (d) of the Evidence Act, 2011 against the bank.

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Port Harcourt-Based Engineer Wins House in Glo Festival of Joy Promo

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A Port Harcourt-based Mechanical Engineer, Ola Owonifari Joseph, has emerged as the winner of the second house in the ongoing Glo Festival of Joy promo.

The 49-year-old Joseph on Friday received the keys to his new apartment from the Speaker of Rivers State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Ikuinyi O. Ibani, supported by Globacom officials.

An overly elated Joseph, declared, “it’s a miracle and I still can’t believe it. Glo is our family network; we communicate all the time and even with our family friends on Glo lines. I remember loading credit and data recently when the last subscription expired and after that, I opted in to join the promo. I was not expecting anything soon but yesterday morning I got a call from a Glo officer, who after a series of questions told me that I won a house. I was shocked.”

Prodded to speak further, the Ekiti indigene explained: “I was just planning on how to develop my plot of land gradually, and lo and behold, Glo showed up and made me a house owner. This prize is for me and my family and we are moving in immediately. God bless the owner, the management, and the staff of Globacom. They will continue to grow from strength to strength. I am overwhelmed with joy”.

The Speaker of Rivers State House of Assembly, Hon. Ikuinyi O. Ibani lauded Globacom for bringing joy and happiness to Nigerians through the Festival of Joy promo.  He said, ” Globacom is giving a home to the homeless and this is one of the best things you can do to help anyone in life”, adding that, “what Globacom has done today deserves commendation and is worthy of emulation, especially by other telecom companies in Nigeria”.

The Regional Manager of Globacom in Port Harcourt, Mr. Augustine Mamuro, noted that the company was glad to see the joy on the faces of lucky winners as they receive amazing prizes across the country.

“From the Garden City of Port Harcourt, the festival of Joy promo train will move to other cities including Lagos, Lokoja, Yola, Calabar, Kano, Enugu, and Makurdi where prizes will be presented to winners in these locations. A total of 20 houses, 24 brand new cars, 100 generators, 200 sewing machines, and 1,000 rechargeable fans will be given out in the promo”, Mamuro explained.

He urged Glo subscribers to dial the dedicated short code *611# to opt into the promo and keep recharging (voice and data during the promo period) to be eligible to win the prizes on offer.

The event, which had the representative of National Lottery Regulatory Commission (NLRC), Port Harcourt office, Mr. Walson Dambo present, also had in attendance the Chief Whip of Rivers State House of Assembly, Hon Evans Bipi, Deputy Chairman of Okrika Local Government, Hon. Obed Tamuno, and Nollywood icons such as Victor Osuagwu and Francis Duru.

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Food for Living: The Relationship Between Prayer and Work

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By Henry Ukazu

Dear Destiny Friends,

Pray as if everything depends on God; work as if everything depends on you.” – Saint Augustine

As we are gradually approach the end of the year, it is pertinent to examine how we have fared thereby ascertain where we got it right and wrong, and take take steps to make an improvement. A good way to know if you have fared well is by checking the results of all your actions and activities. This, in other words, means to consciously take stock of our products, services and life in general. Taking stock applies to all aspects of lives cutting across business, academic, family, government, personal and professional development. Regardless of any sector or industry you find yourself in, what people want to know is what you achieved while working there; that’s one way to access your value.

This informs the reason most people go all out to prove themselves during their probation periods. However, before you can produce results, you must understand what is needed wherever you are. You must also understand the power dynamics and how office politics is played. This will enable you to work smart.

There is a relationship between praying and working. Prayer has its role and so does work. It is important to note that you cannot succeed without praying for success, and you cannot also succeed without working. Both work hand in glove.  According to Dr. Yomi Garnett, an accomplished ghost writer, “While prayer releases God’s favour, work unleashes the force of man. When God’s favour collides with your force, the extraordinary in you manifest”.

Therefore, you must work for everything you pray for, and pray for everything you work for. This means that for you to see the fruit which you have been promised, you must till they soil.

When you pray and work, you attract opportunities. Opportunities don’t literally come to you; you have to attract it. The mistake some people make is praying or asking people to do for them what they can do for themselves. It is important to note that nobody will assist you if you are not willing to assist yourself.

Did you know that work is a form of prayer? Yes, because when you work you are praying for a cause to take effect. According to Late M.K.O Abiola, “prayer is a work in action”.

For you to succeed in any establishment, you need an element of spiritual and physical blessings. Spiritual blessings can be prayers from your creator, parents, mentors, or even superiors, who have accomplished and distinguished themselves in the field. You cannot overrule this part. You might argue some wealthy men succeeded without the spiritual factor, well, what you fail to understand is that spiritual blessings come in various kinds. It can be positive or negative. For the purpose of this article, I will focus on the positive aspect.

Sometimes what we must understand is that when you see people who have truly succeeded in life, you don’t know the kind of seeds they have sowed in life. Maybe they have sponsored many people in schools, paid bills for men and women in hospitals, built infrastructural facilities etc. All these philanthropic acts may have generated a lot of goodwill prayers without the person knowing. That’s why sometimes, we don’t know the prayers that will be answered. Again, that is why it is always good to be good.

In conclusion, you have to be intentional with the kind of prayer you pray, and the kind of work you do.

Henry Ukazu writes from New York. He’s a Human Capacity & mindset coach. He’s also a public speaker, youth advocate and creative writer. He works with the 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 and President of gloemi.com. He can be reached via info@gloemi.com

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