Appoints Owonikoko as President
By Olasunkanmi Akoni
The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi has launched the Royal African Foundation targeted at addressing a wide range of issues affecting youths including leadership, poverty, social inclusion, inequality, among others.
Speaking at his palace, recently, the monarch, said it was gratifying for him as the launch of the foundation coincided with his sixth anniversary on the throne as the Ooni of Ife.
The revered monarch said the foundation, is part of his personal contribution to give youths a viable platform to explore their talents and synergize so as to begin to drive the much-needed development in society.
“This even is another red-letter day for me because this is an initiative that I am very passionate about. The Royal African Foundation is deeply rooted on five pillars which are the bedrock of my existence on this throne and that’s what I stand for.
“We have a lot of youths that are out there that can perform wonders, they only need good self-esteem to get a lot of things done. They are called leaders of tomorrow, but I don’t belong to that school of thought anymore, they are right now the current leadership structure particularly in the area of governance and politics. We need to instill a lot of discipline and moral values in them, the content of their character is very paramount.”
Also speaking, the President of the Royal African Foundation, Olusola Owonikoko said the initiative will focus on five pillars including Leadership and Governance; Technology and Innovation; Creative Culture, Academic Excellence. He added that the Foundation will serve as the Umbrella body for all transformational humanitarian projects of the Ooni of Ife.
According to Owonikoko, It will require mobilizing financial, human, and technological resources to directly address poverty, inequality, and social exclusion through pragmatic intervention from the grassroots to the national level.
“No one person will be able to change Nigeria at once, we all have to come together and collaborate. But we don’t have such a prestigious platform that aids collaboration and that is what the Foundation is already doing; bringing people together to create sustainable impacts,” Owonikoko explained.
In the same vein, the Chief Executive Officer of the Ooni of Ife Global Outreach, Dr. Ayobami Oyedare, said the timing of the launch of the foundation was auspicious as youths are in dire need of a platform to blossom and thrive for national development.
Dr. Oyedare added that the Foundation is rightly positioned to give young people in the 21st century of Nigeria and Africa the opportunity to thrive, blossom, and use their engagement to change the narrative of the country and the continent.
President of the National Youth Congress (NYC), Blessing Akinlosotu welcomed the idea of the Foundation, while assuring that his organization was ready to explore all areas of partnership for the development of youths in Nigeria.
Earlier, President of Ascend Studio, Inya Lawal, expressed her optimism stressing that the Royal African Foundation will go a long way to enhance youth development in Nigeria, especially for young women.
Lawal, who will be spearheading a key project for the foundation, known as Women-Owned Micro Business (WOMB) said the idea is to empower women in tertiary institutions which ‘is very important to the