By Clifford Ndujihe, Politics Editor
ALL roads lead to Eko Hotels & Suites, Lagos, today, as Vanguard, Nigeria’s best-read newspaper, honours iconic men and women, whose contributions to ensure a better society stood them out as the best of the best in 2019 and 2020.
To be honoured are four high-flying governors, seven public icons and role models, and 18 elder statesmen and women, who have led exemplary lives worthy of emulation in diverse fields of human endeavour.
The event is Vanguard Personality of the Year award 2019 and 2020. It begins at 6 pm today at the Convention Centre, Eko Hotel & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.
Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu; his Borno counterpart, Professor Babagana Zulum; as well as Business Tycoon and Philanthropist, Mr. Femi Otedola, will receive the personality of the year award.
Otedola is Vanguard’s 2019 personality of the year recipient while Sanwo-Olu and Zulum are the 2020 joint personalities of the year.
The 2019 Vanguard governor of the year award goes to Dr Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti), Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo), Malam Nasir el-Rufai (Kaduna) and Dr Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia).
Those to be honoured for their outstanding work in private sector or public service are Founder/ Executive Chairman of BUA Cement Plc, Alhaji Abdul Samad Rabiu (2020 Businessman of the year); Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Governor, Dr Godwin Emefiele (2020 Public Sector Icon of the year); and Minister of Transportation, Rt Hon. Rotimi Amaechi (2019 Public Sector Icon of the year).
Also, in this category are Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Lee Engineering and Construction Company Limited, Dr Leemon Ikpea (2019 Businessman of the year); President/CEO, Belemaoil Production Limited, Mr. Jack-Rich Tein, jnr (Entrepreneur of the year); Princess Rosemary Osula-Atu (Woman Entrepreneur of the year); and Managing/CEO, Sujimoto Construction, Mr. Sijibomi Ogundele (Young Entrepreneur of the year).
The 18 lifetime achievement awardees include Elder statesman and First Republic Minister, Chief Mbazulike Amechi; Afenifere Leader, Chief Ayo Adebanjo; advertising guru, Biodun Shobanjo; international jurist, Justice Bola Ajibola; Juju music Maestro, Chief Ebenezer Obey-Fabiyi; Boardroom guru and technocrat, Alhaji Shehu Malami; and former Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Aloma Mariam Mukhtar.
On this pedestal are Legal Icon, Chief Folake Solanke; former Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Obong Victor Attah; erudite broadcaster, academic, and diplomat, Dr Christopher Kolade; Chartered Biologist, academic and thinker, Professor Anya O. Anya;
Others are Accountancy Czar and diplomat, Chief Arthur Mbanefo; and renowned journalist and former Governor of Ogun State, Chief Olusegun Osoba; Philanthropist and elder statesman, Dr. Bode Olajumoke; Elderstatesman and politician, Alhaji Tanko Yakassai; Administrator and Philanthropist, Alhaji Mamman Daura; Academic, Professor Adenike Grange; and Educationist Chief Winifred Awosika
Today’s event is the first of its kind in the annals of the yearly ceremony. It is the first time two years’ are combined.