CBN Sacks Boards, Mgts of 3 Banks, Appoints New Executives

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Billionaire insists best inheritance for his children, next generation is safe, prosperous Lagos  

Sanwo-Olu says donor’s gesture testimonial for others

Segun James and Peter Uzoho

The Chairman of Geregu Power Plc and a Non-Executive Director of FBN Holdings, billionaire and philanthropist, Mr. Femi Otedola, yesterday, donated N1 billion to the Lagos State Security Trust Fund in support of the agency’s role of strengthening the state’s security architecture.

It is also intended to improve the security of lives and property of the South-west State.

At the official presentation ceremony held at the Governor’s Marina House, Lagos, Otedola, who was represented by his daughter, Ms. Tolani Otedola, said the donation was to ensure the continuity of the critical work being done by the Fund.

He stated that the latest donation made him the highest individual donor to the Fund.

Otedola, insisted that the best inheritance he has for his children and the next generation was a safe and prosperous Lagos.

He acknowledged the Lagos State Security Trust Fund as a public-private partnership established to provide equipment, training, and logistics to the police and other security agencies working in Lagos State, saying they have performed the role for 17 years.

“My father has taken an interest in this Fund since its inception and has from time to time made contributions to it. Over the years the Fund has continued to live up to its mandate and has remained very relevant in the security architecture of Lagos State.

“This is why my father has decided to commit another donation of 1 billion naira to the Fund to ensure the continuity of the critical work being done by the Fund, making him the highest individual donor to the Fund,” Tolani stated.

She noted that Lagos State was one of the few States in Nigeria where people move around freely without much worry about security, even in the dead of night.

In fact, Tolani admitted that there was no notable security breach recorded during the last Christmas and New Year celebrations with all the shows and funfair that accompanied them.

While thanking the gallant men and women of the security services for their good work, she stressed the need to recognise the role of the Lagos State Security Trust Fund in enabling the security agents in their jobs.

Tolani further said, “My father believes that when well-meaning Lagos residents contribute to this type of effort, Lagos will be safer, and we all will be more prosperous.

“He, therefore, encourages all residents of Lagos, especially the corporate Lagos and high net worth individuals, to take a moment to reflect on the significance of donating to the Fund and then make that decision to contribute also regardless of size, as every donation has the power to create ripples of change.

“In conclusion, I want to thank Mr. Governor, and the Lagos State Security Trust Fund in particular, for their hard work in keeping Lagos State safe. At the same time, I advise the Fund to continue in its culture of transparency and judicious use of resources.

Responding, Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who thanked Otedola for his continuous support to the Fund, said the donation was extremely important as they would use it as a testimonial for others to emulate.

The governor, who used the occasion to extend compliments to the Otedolas and wished them a prosperous new year, profusely thanked the billionaire businessman for recognising the work done by the Security Trust Fund in the last 17 years.

Sanwo-Olu also appreciated Otedola for being a great supporter of the Fund right from the inception, adding that such kind of support encourage them to continue to protect the state as a government.

“So we want to thank you. We want to thank your dad. We want to send our best wishes to him. We want to say to him that where this has come from, that a lot more will come.

“Businesses will flourish and grow well this year. And we should also knock some of his own very wealthy friends as well, that you are not my friend if you have not gone to do the rightful thing,” Sanwo-Olu stated.

He said the government felt enthused for setting the right business and economic environment.

He revealed that the last December into the new year would rank as one of the most active movement of diaspora population, tourist engagement and a lot of social economic activity in the state with just pockets of security breaches, which were surmounted.

However, for being able to surmount an eventful period such as the last yuletide, he said everyone needed to be commended.

He said particular commendation needed to be given to men and women of the Nigerian Police and the Lagos Police Command, who have conscious and generous capacity to continue to protect the citizens and whom the Fund had been set up to continue to support, encourage, and assist the security agents.

The governor also remarked that the support from the Otedolas was a right and proper thing to do, explaining that with such support, they were creating an atmosphere that would allow people to live peacefully and happily in the state.

In addition, the governor said through such supports as given by Otedola, economic benefits were being created into the communities, with safer environment, and improved opportunity.

He encouraged other Nigerians to emulate Otedola’s generous contributions towards noble cause and even torpedo him as the highest individual donor to the Fund.

“So it’s a call that the one billion that he has donated is not the limit. In fact, there are no limits at all.

“We’re putting it out there that there’s not enough. Beginners would let others come and do more so that they can outpace him. But today, it’s about him and it’s about what he stands for,” he said.

Sanwo-Olu, however, assured Tolani and her siblings that their generational wealth was not being depleted by their father’s philanthropic donations.

He said rather, their wealth was being rearranged in a way that they would continue to live safe and secured, adding, “it is a living asset that will work and ensure that you have that tomorrow that you crave for.”

“So it’s actually a strategic investment to secure that future for your generation and other generations that are coming behind. So whilst we’re thanking and commending you through your dad, I think it’s really to make a call out to other well-meaning Lagosians, large corporates, business.”

Sanwo-Olu received the donation from Otedola in the company of the Chairman, LSSTF, Mr. Kehinde Durosinmi-Etti; Executive Secretary/CEO of LSSTF, Dr. Abdurrazak Balogun and other state officials and LSSTF Board of Directors.

He added: “On behalf of the Fund, the board chairman, Mr. Kehinde Durosinmi-Etti; Executive Secretary/CEO, Dr. Abdurrazak Balogun and other board members, we express our deep appreciation to Mr. Femi Otedola. I want other Nigerians to emulate him and even exceed his donation. The N1 billion he has donated is not the limit. There are no limits, let others come and do more.”

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