Editor's note: Adelanke Seyi in this opinion writes that politicians celebrating with the less privileged does not come too often and having passion for the welfare of orphans and the needy is also rare as well.
Executive chairman of Itire-Ikate local council development area, Hon Dr Ahmed Apatira climaxed a week long birthday celebration with a less privileged outreach and commissioning of four self-funded projects in four different communities in Itire-Ikate LCDA.
The politician turns a year older on April 17. And of course, the day, in a uniquely different manner was celebrated in a classy but humane way.
The day was a quiet day of prayers and reflections spent in the care of the needy, the less privileged and the specially crafted creatures of the Almighty.
There were no rollouts of drums. No turnout of ethnic groups who were eagerly willing to celebrate the Iconic political figure in colourful native dresses and show of glamour, a benefactor whose compassion knew no bound.
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Alas! The day was celebrated with no pomp and pageantry. No massive tent that spelt affluence. And the bandstand was muffled as the glamorous celebrators were kept at arm length.
No revelry. No jamboree. No merriment. But it was all about fulfilling the needs of residents, the less-privileged and orphans celebrating the “womb escape day" of the special breed politician.
The week-long birthday celebration began with empowerment and skill acquisition programme specifically targeted at the youth of the council development area.
With the empowerment programme held in partnership with Zenith Bank Plc., over 150 youth were taken out of poverty.
This was soon followed by orphan and less privileged birthday outreach to Wesley School for the Blind and Pacelli School, Ajao road and Atunda-olu School for the Physically and Mentally Challenged located in Surulere, Lagos.
With the visit, the pupils were gifted with cash and food items. And their joy was indescribable!
The highpoint of the celebration was the commissioning of four self-funded projects bequeath to selected communities within the Itire-Ikate LCDA.
Indeed, Hon. (Dr) Ahmed Olanrewaju Apatira is a man in whom passion for adults and youth, old and young, widows, orphans and the less privileged have become defining attributes.
Speaking on the mode of celebration, the All Progressives Congress (APC), Itire-Ikate LGA chairman, Alhaji Safariyu-Ayinde Kushimo who utterly described Dr Apatira as humane and compassionate disclosed that the celebrant would rather celebrate his birthday with the vulnerable as a mark of service to humanity.
Kushimo represented the council boss at the commissioning of the four boreholes projects at Abiodun Wright in Ikate community, Adeboyejo Street in Ijeshatedo community, Ogumuyiwa and Ijikoyejo Street in Itire community.
He said, “Dr Apatira is a very simple and humble person. He always prefers low key celebration on his birthday and would rather celebrate with the vulnerable in the society as a mark of service to humanity and a heart full of gratitude to the Almighty for His Grace on his life.
He is deeply concerned about the welfare and wellbeing of the people of Itire-Ikate LCDA.
With this gesture, again, the council helmsman has proven his love and undying commitment to the progress of residents of the council. And he would always be remembered for this gesture.
“Since his assumption of office, he has promised to work to put smiles on the faces of his people. One of such ways to achieve this momentous desire is the provision of boreholes for the use of the communities. What more can I say than to keep assuring the good people of Itire-Ikate LCDA, on behalf of our Chairman that more projects are coming their ways in the remaining days of the administration.”
For the proprietress of Atunda-Olu School for the Physically Challenged, Mrs Onasanwo Olatunde Maruf, it was an outpour of encomium and a heart full of gratitude.
She said, “I sincerely appreciate you for providing the needs of the children. I must say the visit is indeed a sincere one as the council chairman; Dr Apatira keeps calling to update us and care for the children.
Your tender-heartedness and thoughtfulness will be of great help to increase the well-being of the children. On behalf of the management, staff and the children of the home, I say, thank you so much. And on behalf of the home, I wish you many more years to celebrate in good health, abundant grace and blessings of the Almighty.”
Humble with the show of love, the celebrant, Hon. (Dr) Ahmed Olarenwaju Apatira during the gift presentation ceremony to the Homes disclosed that the visit was his contribution to ensuring that children of the Home lead a good and fulfilling life.
“It is important for me to visit the less privileged children and show them some love. For me, every birthday is not about merriment. It is all about touching and impacting lives and that is exactly what we have done here today.
My joy knew no bound seeing the smiles on the beautiful faces of these children. I pray that the gifts will add more nutritional value to their health.
This isn’t the first neither would it be the last visit. I would be here often to check on the children. Thank you very much.”
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