Nigeria News

Who Is Nigeria’s Person Of The Year?

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Elevatenews takes a look at who can be Nigeria Man of the year 2019.

In a few weeks, more media and corporate organisation will name their person of the year and as usual, the awards will go to governors and businessmen.

In this part of the world, some awards are bought. This explains why it is difficult for a certain class of people to win.

It is not necessarily based on what the winner had offered in terms of national or individual developments, it is how much he or she can offer in terms of money and influence to the organisers of the awards ceremony.

Only a few bodies such as the Nigeria Media Merit Award and the Diamond Awards for Media Excellency are yet to compromise the standards of its awards to outstanding journalists and media houses.

The Wole Soyinka Investigative Award for Journalists will soon dwarf the NMMA in a short time to come, judging by the quality of entries that are being churned out every year for the award.

In February as usual, the Silverbird Man of the year award will be held at the Eko Hotel Convention Centre. ThisDay Newspaper Awards, The Sun, Daily Trust, Vanguard, New Telegraph, all organise awards for governors and businessmen.

Awards are money-making strategy.

No fewer than five personalities have been selected for the Silverbird awards and the nominees include three governors, one minister and a bank executive.

Of course, there are other categories of awards, which recognise the ordinary people on the street and those who have excelled in their various careers.

In all of these, I could not see any of the categories that identifies with a roadside corn seller or a pepper seller at Ketu market.

Women who labour in the sun and the rain to train their children to university level despite the harsh economy.

No doubt, there are Civil Organisations who have picked interest in celebrating the ordinary people but publicity is not as loud about a governor winning an award.

What makes a man the man of the year? Is it the road he has built while serving as a governor or his outstanding performance in some other rare areas?

Either way, the governor has been able to perform because there is taxpayer’s money somewhere.

The Chief Executive Officer of the Airpeace, Mr. Allen Onyema quickly came to my mind as a qualified candidate for man of the year but his latest story of the alleged fraud is a question mark on his reputation.

Onyema’s effort in bringing back Nigerians from South Africa during the xenophobic attack was enough to win him Nigeria’s man of the year but the fraud issue raised against him by the US government is still being investigated.

I would have preferred the immediate past Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service, Babatunde Fowler as another man of the year but since he was removed by President Muhammadu Buhari, the news of his alleged misappropriation have been flying around.

The Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Magu to me is a personality for this award, having done his bit despite the politics that surround his appointment.

He has stepped on toes and broken some, yet he has not been robed or indicted in any corrupt practices.

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