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What is mine will never pass me by — Guard who returned large sums of money forgotten at MMIA

By Yinka Ajayi

President Muhammadu Buhari recently advised  Nigerians to emulate two security guards, Mr.  Achi Daniel and Mr. Francis Emepueaku, who returned a handbag containing valuables and large sums of money  misplaced at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja (MMIA) by an American returnee, saying such conduct reflects the new Nigerian.

Francis and Achi inspecting a guard parade in their honour. Photo by Lamidi Bamide

Halogen Security, employers of the two  guards, on the heels of the advice, rewarded them with  N450,000 each and  scholarship  to study overseas in security management The company’s management singled them out for a parade of  honour by their colleagues at the MMIA.

What is meant for me will never pass me by – Daniel, Junior Guard

Delighted by the employers gesture, Daniel said: “ Today is the best day of my life. As a Christian,I am aware that self-contentment is a virtue and a  sure path to greatness in life. I knew a day like this will come. I am proud that Nigeria’s President Muhamadu Buhari commended my selfless service and integrity.  It is the highest honour I have ever received.  It is unfortunate that my wife is not alive to witness this day, but I am sure today will be remembered globally as my day of honour.  I wondered how the owner could forget such a valuable bag at the car park. I didn’t  hesitate to report it to my supervisor immediately, because I knew what is not mine is not mine. But I am always optimistic that what is mine will never pass me by.”

Contentment is my watchword –  Emepueaku, Supervisor

On his part, Emepueaku said, “I believe in God’s time . I made sure that all the items in the bag were intact and untampered with. Even when they insisted on appreciating us, I declined because I am aware it is only God that honours man before his peers. I was brought up in a home where contentment is our watchword. I will forever take Dr. Oyegbami as a father and a source of inspiration”.

No one can change our country than ourselves – Olaoye

Speaking, the Group Managing Director, Halogen Security, Mr. Wale Olaoye, said: “On the scale of what we do, it is obvious that technology alone cannot get the job done without people of integrity. No one can change our country, only us can do it. What Achi and Francis did today has caught global attention about Nigeria and it is work in progress as we are relentless  in our services to our dear country. No effective change will happen in Nigeria unless Nigerians take their jobs seriously.”

Olaoye encouraged the two guards and their colleagues to see themselves as  potential chief security officers [CSOs] of  multinational companies. “Halogen Security has produced many chief security officers of major multinational companies like MTN, Virgin Nigeria and Air Nigeria among others from here. Any of you can rise to that level. I encourage you to aim high”, he charged.

Let us appreciate great examples – Awosika

In the same vein, Mr. Jimi Awosika,  renowned communication guru, present at the occasion, said: “Let us learn to salute great examples. Doctor Banji Oyegbami has done Nigeria proud by speaking up on the good gesture displayed by these two gallant guards. If he had not pushed on social media, we would not have gathered here in their honour. It’s a proof that the two gentlemen are also the good news that the world can emulate in Nigeria.”

Daniel, a junior guard  deployed to secure the multi-level car park facility managed by a Halogen client, Aphamead Facilities Management Limited at  MMIA, had  found the lost bag and immediately handed  it to his supervisor- Emepueaku, for proper handling and investigation. Supo Francis scrolled through the phone in the lost bag and called one of the bag owner’s contacts that he had found in the phone.  The contact happened to be the daughter of the owner of the bag, who received the call in America. This legendary display of integrity got the owner surprised.

With this breed of professionals,Nigeria will be great again –  Oyegbami

Dr. Banji Oyegbami, a  Lagos based medical practitioner and a family friend of the owner of the lost bag who witnessed the incident, expressed the hope that Nigeria will be great again with men of integrity such as Achi and Francis. “I was really surprised at the level of honesty and integrity displayed by  both of them and I think they should be commended. There is no doubt, Nigeria is going to be great again with these kind of new breed of professionals”,  he said.

 


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