High Chief Owolabi Salis, the 2019 governorship candidate of Alliance for Democracy, AD, in Lagos State, has given out money to 120 less-privileged people.
“It is my little way of reducing their burden in this period of COVID-19 lockdown,” he told newsmen.
Salis, a philanthropist, who currently resides in the United State, took to a 20-man WhatsApp group he created to urge each member to send in names and bank account numbers of 10 less-privileged persons each.
He then forwarded the details to his accountant, with the beneficiaries, none of whom is known to him, immediately confirming credit alerts.
The elated recipients who did not even know where the money originated from, as the philanthropist refused to send in his name, were full of prayers for the donor for him.
Salis said: “I did not do it for them to recognise me. I did it out of the genuine love and care I have for humanity.
“It is not only when we seek for votes that politicians should come to the rescue of citizens. Times are tough and hard. Whatever we give now will go a long way in helping the needy.
“All over the world, people of means are coming to the rescue of the less-privileged and now is as good as ever.
“I did not do it for politics and do not know any of the recipients who are not members of the various WhatsApp platforms I belong to.
“I asked every member in a WhatsApp group I belong to, to send in 10 account numbers each, which were compiled and forwarded to my accountant in Nigeria with a directive to make immediate payments.
“I am happy that in my own little way, I put smiles on the faces of many in these hard times.”
He urged all well meaning Nigerians to donate palliatives that could cushion the hard times on the poor.
A beneficiary reacts
One of the beneficiaries, Awo Linda Gift, who does not know Owolabi Salis, told Vanguard: “The night before the morning you called, I was devastated and had had it full, because my family and I had been eating once a day since last month and it became unbearable since the lockdown.
“Although my organisation had paid me my monthly earning, I deposited the money straight to the bank I collected a loan of N600,000 I collected for my little sister’s school fees. Not knowing that the lockdown would make it worse.
“We couldn’t feed, didn’t know where the next meal would be from. I said a heartfelt prayer before going to bed and said ‘Lord, many trust in chariots, some in horses but it is in you I put my trust. My accounts are in zero, I can’t even recharge let alone have to withdraw for my family. Lord please send help to me. I know you can do it…blah blah blah’.
“I was so downcast, but seeing calls from you and Sophie that morning almost scared me to death. When I called and you asked me to send my account details, I wouldn’t be able to describe the joy I felt.
“I never knew how much to expect or perhaps it was a joke. But immediately I got the alert after I sent you the screenshot to confirm it, I withdrew it and went straight to the market to get things for my family.
“From my heart, I pray God bless Chief Owolabi Salis (although I have never met him); immensely beyond measure for stretching out a hand of love towards us. You are the Angel God used in answering my prayer that night.”
Born in Lagos on January 1, 1963, Owolabi Salis holds a B.SC. in Accounting from the Ahmadu Bello University; M.Sc., Accounting, University of Lagos; LL.B., Law, University of Lagos; Barrister at Law (B.L.,) Council of Legal Education.
Owolabi Salis, the AD chieftain also holds professional qualifications such as FCA, Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, ICAN; Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, CIBN (Fellow); Associate, Nigerian Institute of Public Relations.
Others are American Institute of Certified Public Accountant, AICPA; New York State Bar 2002, USA, and National Association of Security Dealers, NASD, Now FINRA.
He is a member, American Branch of International Law Association; member, New York State and New York County Bar Associations; member, United States Chamber of Commerce.
Owolabi Salis is also member, American Civil Liberties Union, ACLU; member, Amnesty International; and member, Nigerian American Chamber of Commerce.