Impressed by what it called laudable initiative, the Delta North Indigenes in Diaspora Association, (DNIDA) Atlanta Georgia, United States chapter, has lauded Anioma Professionals Forum for honouring Chief Sunny l. Odogwu with the Lifetime Award as Outstanding Personality of the Decade for Entrepreneurship and Philanthropy.
The association in a statement signed by its President, Dr. Willy Oyem and Secretary, Uche Monyei, respectively, said they were most impressed by the Anioma Professionals forum’s action, adding “while there is the penchant for Nigerians to idolise icons and legends only after their death, though Odogwu is a recipient of many awards, but this recent honour becomes more apt and timely, because it is coming at a period when Nigeria and the world at large, are placing high premium on entrepreneurship in an age of crippling unemployment and recession.”
The statement further stressed: “We make bold to say that such an award will go a long way in building the bridge of progress, unity and further help in mentoring our teeming youths into becoming future leaders. It is beyond contention that Chief Odogwu has been a leading light in entrepreneurship in the country, who, while many in his generation readily settled for colonial civil service jobs, veered off the ‘norm’ to go into private business, especially the unpredictable and comparatively unknown insurance sector in Nigeria. He remains undisputedly and admirably, one of the first ever notable then Bendel Igbo to dominate the business world and has made lasting impressions in the mould of other icons of his generation, like the now late Olorugun Micheal Ibru.”
The group further noted that, from Insurance Odogwu established the SIO conglomerate which became one of the leading private sector companies, employing thousands of youths across the country, adding that Odogwu’s SIO Industries at his home town, Asaba became the highest private sector employer of labour in Delta State in the late 1990s and early 2000.
The association further called on the Delta State government and the nation’s leadership at large, to tap from Odogwu’s huge business experiences to chart a new course in rebuilding the state and Nigeria’s dwindling economy through private sector-driven policies for lasting entrepreneurship and prosperity.
The group added: “We urge the Forum and other bodies of similar interests, to continue to dig deep and recognise other outstanding personalities in the area and beyond, as this will serve as an inspiration to the younger generation in an age where value for hard work and honesty have been thrown overboard.”