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Personality in Focus

Idahosa Wells Okunbo: Highly Skilled Entrepreneur, Philanthropist

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By Eric Elezuo

The mark of greatness lies in the ability to point at a direction, and say this is the number of lives I have touched, impacted and given a new lease of hope. However, it is only a handful of the men of means who qualify to be dressed in this garb, and the person of Captain Idahosa Wells Okunbor, popularly known as Hosa, is the first out of a few to be so classified.

Hosa’s philanthropy speaks loud and volumes, and has become a reference point in admonition and encouragement.

Born on January 7, 1958 in Benin City, Hosa, a business magnate, investor, philanthropist and trained commercial pilot of repute, is a proud product of the Reverend Robert Amos Okunbo family, who himself is a clergyman, teacher and community leader.

Okunbo started his path to a glorious career when he enrolled at the Government Primary School in Benin City, old Bendel State, now Edo State for his elementary education. He proceeded to Federal Government College, Warri, in 1971, where he sat for West African Senior School Certificate Examination, and came out in flying colours.

As a scholar who was not confused as regards the path he wishes to follow, made his choice early in life to become a pilot. As a result, he pursued his desire by studying at the Nigerian Civil Aviation Training Centre, Zaria, Kaduna State, and became a professional commercial pilot at the age of 21. He also attended ACME School of Aeronautics, Fort Worth Texas in 1983, where he obtained an Airline Transport Pilot License.

At the age of 25 in 1983, Okunbo was made a captain. He practiced his trade as a flight captain with Intercontinental Airlines for about two years, before moving over to Okada Airlines for where he served with honours for another three years.

In 1988 and at the age of 30, he retired from piloting having recorded over a whopping 7,000 hours of flight time, and ventured into private business, a calling that further launched him into the cycle of philanthropy.

With his hands in many pies, Okunbo established Hoslyn Ventures Nigeria Ltd., a company that was involved with procurement in the Nigerian petroleum sector. Hoslyn Ventures was an indigenous oilfield service company that was responsible for the Early Production Facility (EPF) project at Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) between 1998 and 2001.
More so, he had served in many capacities including chairmanship or directorial position on numerous company boards in Nigeria in various business sectors such as the agro-allied, petroleum, telecommunications, power, real estate and banking industries.

A man of diverse intelligence, who has investments in many businesses, Okunbo founded the following companies, which he also sits atop as chairman:

Wells San-Carlos Agro Farms Ltd., which, in March 2016, unveiled a $750 million, 9,000-hectare (22,000-acre) farm intended to “create 85,000 jobs in Edo State”.
Ocean Marine Security Ltd., an offshore asset-protection company, rendering services to major oil companies in Nigeria, including NNPC. Wikipedia reported that the company recently completed the building of the 46-kilometre (29 mi) Escravos–Warri Crude Pipeline, which was inaugurated by Nigeria’s Minister of State for Petroleum, Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu.
PPP Fluid Mechanics Ltd., a marine and logistics company
Westminster Security Solutions Nigeria Ltd, a franchise of Westminster Group Plc UK, of which he is major shareholder.
Wells Group of companies, which include Wells Dredging Ltd., Wells Property Development Company Ltd., and Wells Entertainments Ltd. – through which Okunbo financed the movie Black November.
OMS Tankers Ltd., which owns Nigeria’s first marine tankers.
Hoslyn Habitat Ltd., which is a design, construction and landscaping company.
Gyro Air Ltd., operators of charter flight operations.
Okunbo is a director in the following companies:
Joint Marine Environ Guard Ltd. (JMEG)
Secure Anchorage Area Ltd. (SAA)
Digisteel Integrated Services Ltd.
Phil Nugent Nigeria Ltd.
Integrated Energy Distribution and Marketing Ltd. (IEDM), which is a core investor in Ibadan and Yola Electricity Distribution Companies.

Okunbo is member of the Board of Directors of NatCom Development and Investment Ltd., which is the holding company Nigerian telecommunications giant NTEL.

In 2012, Okunbo received the Africa Titans Award from the Congress of the United States in collaboration with the African Society Summit, in recognition of “strides on behalf of Africa in the international arena.” He was honoured for being one of those “who seek to project a new and hopeful light on Africa.”

In November of the same year, the University of Benin conferred him with an honorary Doctor of Science degree.

He was granted the “Worthy Ambassador of Unity Award” as an old student of Federal Government College, Warri in March 2016.

On October 2, 2014, the Oba of Benin, Oba Erediauwa, gifted Okunbo “with the ‘Traditional Beads’ for being a worthy son of the ancient Kingdom.”

Hosa’s act of philanthropy is congenital as he is known to have expressed his benevolence to as many that has come his way. Testimonies have it that no one who comes in contact with him goes back without a smile on his face. He is known to be nice to a fault, and has seen quite a good number of his constituents through academics or profitable empowerment.

He is a very good man.

Okunbo is married and is blessed with numerous healthy and prolific children

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Personality in Focus

FirstBank’s Ani-Mumuney Honoured with Lifetime Achievement Award in Ghana

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By Eric Elezuo

Chairperson, FBNInsurance Brokers and Group Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications, First Bank of Nigeria Limited as well as Vice President, World Federation of Advertisers, Mrs. Folake Ani-Mumuney, has been honoured with the Lifetime Achievement award at the 2019 Marketing World Awards held in Ghana.

The Marketing World Awards (MWA) is known to recognise outstanding performances by individuals and corporate organisations across the marketing communications industry in Africa.

Folake Ani-Mumuney bagged the prestigious award having delivered superior product values to the market, exhibited excellence in upholding concrete marketing strategies, displayed uniqueness and conveyed clear message to its consumers. She without doubt stood out among competitors thereby deserving of her recognition, award and celebration.

Popularly called FAM by admirers, Mrs. Ani-Mumuney has put in over 25 years in the world of marketing communications across various industries globally.

With a great personality that speaks for itself, she is widely respected and admired for her wit and intelligence.

Ani-Mumuney is not new to awards and recognition as her career is one big story in excellence and achievements.

Like Ani-Mumuney, FirstBank has also been in limelight of awards and honours. The bank has been named “Most Valuable Bank Brand in Nigeria” six times in a row (2011 – 2016) by the globally renowned “The Banker Magazine” of the Financial Times Group; “Best Retail Bank in Nigeria” for seven consecutive years (2011 – 2017) by the Asian Banker International Excellence in Retail Financial Services Awards and “Best Bank in Nigeria” by Global Finance for 15 years.

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Jeff Bezos Now the Richest Man in the World

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After the markets closed Friday, Forbes says Jeff is now worth $109.9 billion, moving him back ahead of Bill and his $105.8 billion net worth.

Briefly, before his Amazon stock increased, he was at number 2, looking up to Bill Gates. His drop in rank previously could be as a result of this year’s costly divorce with ex-wife MacKenzie, who took a huge chunk of his fortune.

MacKenzie’s net worth now stands at $32.7 billion, placing her among the top 20 in the world.

The Guardian

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David Ibiyeomie: Celebrating God’s Vision for Global Impact @57

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By Eric Elezuo

Have you ever seen a man diligent in his work? Do you know he will sit at table with kings and not mean men. He will do wonders and positively affect men and the world in general. One man at the height of such achievement is Pastor David Ibiyeomie, who by every standard, as the Bible would say, is the son of Bishop David Oyedepo, himself the son of Pastor Enoch Adeboye. Of a truth, Pastor David Ibiyeomie has an enviable gyneology and pedigree.

Born on October 21, 1962 in Bonny Island, Rivers State, to the family of late Chief and Mrs. Apollos Iganibo of Bolo Town in Ogu/Bolo Local Government Area of Rivers State, Nigeria, David Ibiyeomie has grown by limps and bounds to become today, one of the reference points of world’s gospel generals, impacting lives and bringing hope and succour to God’s children.

From the earliest humble beginnings, Pastor Ibiyeomie has steadily seen the need to attain great heights, and so he also fashioned his way academically. He attended Banham Primary School Port-Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria between 1969 and 1974 before he went to Government Comprehensive Secondary School, Borikiri, Rivers State, Nigeria, where he was from 1974 to 1979. Thereafter, he was admitted into the Rivers State University of Science and Technology, Port Harcourt for a degree Course in Microbiology in 1980.

Pastor Ibiyeomie saw the light of salvation in 1995 when he became born again. Shortly after he gave his life to Christ, a divine mandate was handed over to him, and being so obedient to the kingdom, he put every mechanism in motion to actuaslise the mandate. And with a super daddy in the person of Bishop David Oyedepo, whose divine guidance and training was made manifest, today he is a thoroughbred Pastor and teacher of the Gospel.

Under the tutelage of Bishop Oyedepo, Pastor Ibiyeomie continued his education, this time, on a higher spiritual level. He attended full time Bible School at the Word of Faith Bible Institute, operated by Oyedepo’s Living Faith Church, the same year he became born again. That was where he was greatly influenced by the Ministry’s standards and impact.

After his Bible School training at WOFBI, Ibiyeomie started a house fellowship with his family in Victoria Island, Lagos home. However, he moved to Port Harcourt, Rivers State, later and established Salvation Ministries (Glorious Chapel) precisely on April 13, 1997. It was a congregation of just 34 members including himself and wife. The mandate was clear: TO ESTABLISH THE KINGDOM OF GOD HERE ON EARTH through infallible proofs.

In a space of three months, the grace of God in Pastor Ibiyeomie was already manifesting, and the ‘church’ moved to a larger plot of land on Plot 17 Birabi Street, GRA Phase 1, Port Harcourt where about 100,000 attendees worship every Sunday alone. This is excluding it’s satelite branches spread across the length and breath of the universe. Of all Ibiyeomie’s expansion move, it was reported that In February 2011, the church started 14 satellite branches in one day, all running five services each. That was a new record in the history of church growth. The ministry will soon implement a seven services programme every Sunday. According to Ibiyeomie, the plan has been perfected according to God’s dictates and will kick off soonest.

In just 22 years of existence, Pastor Ibiyeomie and the ministry have practically become a phenomenon and reference point to the world. Today, David Ibiyeomie pastors millions of worshippers spread all over the globe through his television ministry, online ministration and with over 180 satellite churches within and outside the country and over 300 pastors assisting him.

A selfless leader, Ibiyeomie is a father to the millions of worshippers that throng the Salvation Ministry ground every Sunday, Thursday and other special events days. He is not just a father by sound, he is indeed a father; meeting the needs of members whenever they arise. It is on record that he kind of live on equal basis with his pastors as practically all of them drive the same kind of jeep he drives, and equally own houses. He provided residential quarters, equipped with state of the art facilities for the staff and pastors’ comfort such as GLORIOUS COURT, SUCCESS COURT, KINGS COURT and TEACHERS QUARTERS. He is a giver par excellence.

It is worthy of note that Ibiyeomie has remained systematic in bringing to past God’s instruction towards expanding His kingdom. To this end, he changed his indoor healing miracle programme tagged “HEALING MIRACLE AND DELIVERANCE SERVICE which started in August 2001 to PORT HARCOURT MIRACLE CRUSADE in November 2003. The programme was remodeled to NIGHT OF Glory in 2010 and in January 2012, the NIGHT OF GLORY programme metamorphosed into the 5NIGHTS OF GLORY. It has today become a household programme all-round the globe. In addition, he holds crusades in different major cities of the world where souls are continually won and miracles abound. The most recent is the Aba Miracle Crusade.

With an unquenchable love for education, Ibiyeomie runs one of the best Christian schools in the region; Chockhmah International Academy; the primary and secondary educational arm of Salvation Ministries. He is also putting finishing touches to the opening of the PACE-SETTERS UNIVERSITY.

The ministry also runs The WORD OF LIFE BIBLE INSTITUTE to cater for the spiritual needs of not only members, but all and sundry. The school is reputed to have produced thousands of scholars across denominations since inception.

Papa, as he is fondly called by members who adore him, has not hidden the fact that he is a very rich pastor. He has also not hidden the source of his enduring wealth, and uses every opportunity to teach members how to be wealthy. To him, you only have to give to be super rich – give God unsparingly and unconditionally, and also give to humanity.

His passion to see humanity flourish has seen him awarding scholarships to 634 students in primary, secondary and tertiary institutions in one year. He has also renovated and donated modern hospital equipment worth over two hundred thousand US Dollars to the pediatric section of the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital (UPTH) Nigeria; creating a wonderful ambiance to expedite the recovery of the patients .

He also rebuilt the fence of the Central State Primary School, Igwuruta and reconstructed several roads in the city of Port Harcourt to make the environment more habitable. He has in the same vein, built a state-of-the-art home for the elderly in Port Harcourt. Ibiyeomie’s humanitarian services can only be imagined. He has practically superceded the concept of giving.

His unquenchable desire to see that humanity is well catered for on a more larger scale metamorphosed in the establishment of the David Ibiyeomie Foundation (DIF) through which he has rendered untold assistance to thousands. In a space of less than one year, that is between 2018 and 2019, the giver extra-ordinaire has spent over N1.5 billion on scholarships alone. Here is a man who has redefined the concept of giving and brotherly love.

Apart from a preacher and teacher of the Word, Ibiyeomie is a writer of repute, and credited with over 85 inspirational books cutting across all strata of living. Some of them are Dealing with Habits, Enjoying the Favour of God, Secrets for Generational Impact, Total Dominion, The Power of Praise, The Real You, How to Hear from God, The Power of Small Beginning, How Faith Works, Touch of Excellence, How to Fulfill Your Destiny, The Power of Obedience, Prosperity of the Righteous, Business Secrets, The Wonders of Wisdom, The Power of Resurrection, Wisdom for Creativity, Attitude for Supernatural Supplies, The Totality of Man, Keys to Impactful Living, See You at the Top, The Pathway to Greatness, The Power of Commitment, Wisdom to See Ahead, The Price for Power, The Prosperous Family, Walking in the Anointing, Be the Best, Success Pillars and Demonstrating Love for Your Nation.

He is the quintessential evidence to God’s vision towards global impact.

He is happily married to Peace Ibiyeomie, and they are blessed with a son, David Ibiyeomie jr.

Today, the man with a stupendous vision to turn the world around for Christ is 57 years, and we can’t just keep quiet but clink glasses and give God Glory for all He has done. We are so privilege to have an Ibiyeomie in this age and time.

Congratulations sir, and happy glorious birthday!

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