By Henry Ukazu
Good evening friends and lovers of humanity and anything good. Today, I bring you good tidings. Today, I bring you life. Today I bring you hope. Today, I choose to emulate my mentor, Chief Dele Momodu. Please permit me to introduce today’s post with one of my favorite quotes, “the joy of life is not how happy you are, but how happy others can be because of you.” Today, I’ve decided to celebrate humanity. Today, I’ve decided to talk about a man that has changed the face of Nigeria and the African continent with his lifestyle and magazine, Ovation International.
Chief Dele Momodu, also known as Bob Dee by friends and close associates, was born on May 16, 1960. Like most great men who have been able to achieve success, growing up for him was not easy. Little Dele was encouraged by his mum to never give up hope in life no matter the odds that are against him, which later formed his being and became the root of his success.
EDUCATION: Dele Momodu graduated from University of Ife, (now Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife) with a Bachelor’s degree in Yoruba in 1982 and a Master’s degree in English Literature in 1988. It’s interesting and noteworthy that he’s the only Nigerian with such qualification. While completing his National Service, he lectured at Oyo State College of Arts and Science in Ile-Ife between 1982–83. From 1983 till ’85, he served as private secretary to the former Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Chief Akin Omoboriowo. In 1986, Dele Momodu served the Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade Olubuse II, managing the Motel Royal Limited owned by the monarch. Following Dele’s resignation from the Motel Royal, he went on to attain his post-graduate degree in English literature. Chief Dele Momodu is a big fan of education, which explains his passion for teaching. He has used multiple media platforms (i.e. twitter, Facebook, and Instagram) to educate people of interest. One of my favorite quotes by Dele Momodu is, “It’s only a fool that neglects what affects his life.”
CAREER: In May 1988, Dele Momodu got his first job as Staff Writer with the African Concord magazine, owned by late Chief Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola. A year later, he was named pioneer staff at Weekend Concord where he wrote his first cover story in March 1989. He was also a contributor for publications such as the National Concord, Sunday Concord, Business Concord and the Yoruba newspaper, Isokan. In May 1989, he became Literary Editor at the Weekend Concord and was named News Editor six months later. Between May 1990 and September 1991 he edited May Ellen Ezekiel’s Classique, a celebrity magazine that made him the highest-paid editor in Nigeria. He resigned and tried his hands on doing business as a bread distributor for his mentor Chief Moshood Abiola, who owned the ‘Wonderloaf’.
POLITICS: : Chief Dele Momodu has been in active politics since 1982. Followers and fan of Dele Momodu know that, during his University years in Obafemi Awolowu Universty, he was very active in Student Union activites and primarily concerned on affairs affecting the lives of students. Dele Momodu announced his intention to run for the presidential election of his homeland Nigeria, which was held in 2011. On 12th of January 2011, he emerged Presidential Candidate of the National Conscience Party (NCP) after a keenly contested party primaries. Though he didn’t win the presidential electeleelection, he was able to show the world and those who believed in him, his vision for Nigeria in addition to enlightening them about his capabcapabilitity of ruling the country if given the opportunity. In 1993, Dele resigned to join the Moshood Abiola Presidential Campaign Organization, Dele Momodu was arrested and detained at Alagbon Close in Lagos, after the annulment of the 12 June Presidential election by General Ibrahim Babangida. He was severely punished for his views but he was undeterred. He was to be arrested in 1995 and charged for treason by the Sani Abacha Government. He was accused of being one of the brains behind the pirate radio station, Radio Freedom later changed to Radio Kudirat, after the cold-blooded murder of Alhaja Kudirat Abiola. Dele Momodu managed to escape masquerading as a farmer through Seme border into Cotonou, in Benin Republic, from where he fled to Togo, Ghana and eventually to the United Kingdom. For three agonizing years, Dele could not re- enter his homeland, Nigeria. During his interest to run for 2011 presidential election, Chief Dele Momodu said “I have the courage to fight the parasites who continue to feed fat on the rest of us”. I have consistently fought for the common good and interest of downtrodden” He also said, he also has conquered fear.
ENTERTAINMENT: Dele Momodu started Ovation International in 1996 while still in exile. After the death of MKO Abiola in prison and subsequently, the death of his persecutor, Sani Abacha, Dele ended his exile. Since then, Dele has expanded Ovation International, and it is now one of Africa’s most popular celebrity magazines. Ovation International is also reputed for being the only bi-lingual magazine in Africa, having editions printed in both English and French. Today, Ovation International is a Household name in Nigeria, Africa, and Europe. Today, Ovationa international has given birth to Ovation Tv which is airing live in Silverbird in Nigeria, Gh1Tv in Ghana and Ben Tv in Europe. Dele Momodu is a name synonymous with hard work. He has always said, Hard work never kills, rather it makes you strong. I have taken some precious time to understudy this literary genius and I have come to the subtle conclusion, he’s a simple but an extra-ordinary being. Very few people on earth are able to control people and resources, just like Chief Dele Momodu has shown his expertise for the past 19years with Ovation Magazine. Still on the sensational birth of Ovation, one of her off springs is Ovation Red Carol and Awards which is an annual event which Dele Momodu started since 2008 (except in 2010, due to the impending presidential elections).The Red Carol is held every December, and has become one of West Africa’s most popular annual Christmas events, often involving musical performances, drama, fashion shows and award presentations for varying charitable causes. This event is also normally used to showcase up coming African Artist, it was one of such event that one of Nigeria’s classy and sassy artist Tiwa Savage was discovered when she was featured on Ovation International.
Having given a summary of the person of Dele Momodu, It is also pertinent to mention that Dele Momodu is a man who always loves to be very objective in his views and opinions on issues of interest regardless of his ox is gored. This was manifested during the death of the Former President of Nigeria Umaru Musa Yar’Adua. He came out and made his voice known by campaigning with the masses against the forces (cabal) preventing President Goodluck from being the president. During March 28, 2015 presidential, seeing the deteriorating nature of the economy and country, he sprang into action and campaigned vigorously for General Muhammadu Burahi, he styled General Muhammadu Buahri the “The Peoples’ General” a name which he sold gallantly to the Nigerian masses and they bought into it. During the electioneering campaign, Chief Dele Momodu used his large knowledge, wisdom, information, media orientation, followership base, goodwill, objectivity, PENdulum and other social media to extol the charismatic qualities, virtues and personality of General Muhammadu Buahri. Also, its worthy to note, he correctly predicted correctly 100% who will win the presidential election and with same margins. His intelligent permutations was widely acclaimed globally. Chief Dele Momodu has used the media to gather enough goodwill to educate, inform, enlighten, inform and orientate them on best practices in this 21st century.
PEACE BUILDER/BROKER: Chief Dele Momodu can be described as a lover of peace. He has been able to reunite many families with his advise. It is on record that it was on the 40th birthday of Chief Dele Momdu that he was able to reconcile the duo of The Oni of Ife Oba Okunade Sijuwade Olabuse11 and the Alaafin of Oyo State Lamidi Olayimola and Olayiwola Adeyemi111. He’s also a very practical person when it comes to negotiating with resourceful clients. Furthermore, Dele Momodu assisted in supporting peace when he visited Sierra Leone during a devastating war which almost tore the country despite warnings from concerned persons that the timing is very bad and also he stands a great chance of losing his life. Just to show courage and love, he proved to the world, he’s a fearless but caring person. A rare trait of a leader.
There’s a lot of information and goodwill about Chief Dele Momodu out there, However, one really has to know the correct facts. Therefore, I will conclude this article with of the following things you need to know about Chief Bashorun Dele Momodu
1.The Democrat: He’s the man who has proven himself as a tested, trusted and tried democrat. We cannot forget how he was thrown into detention and almost lost his life for the June 12 struggle. He was also forced into exile in London.
2.The Politician: He’s the man we describe as the experienced politician who understands the art of politics well enough but has not been corrupted by power. He connects effortlessly with all classes of the Nigerian people.
- The Media Icon: He’s the man who has contributed over 2,000 essays to national discourse on all issues affecting Nigeria. He has caused a major revolution in African publishing.
- Mr. Integrity: He is the man who stands proven in business as an enterprise builder committed to the values of integrity. No business has ever failed in his hands. His business associates attest to his uprightness and he has made a success of all his business concerns.
- Mr. Transparency: He is a true homeboy who has made his personal life and conduct open to all without pretending to be who he is not. Our Bob Dee: friend of the rich; brother to the poor.
- A Large Heart: He is the dream builder and philanthropist who within his modest resources has empowered others to stand on their own.
- A Global Citizen: He is a world-traveller, a worthy son of Africa, and ambassador plenipotentiary for Nigeria. A friend of many nations, respected by presidents and world leaders.
- A Worthy Protégé: He is the loyal godson of Nigeria’s martyr of democracy and has become MKO Abiola’s biggest gift to Nigerian politics.
Ladies and gentlemen please join me in wishing this great man who is been endowed with scintillating wisdom and intellectual humility a happy birthday. MAY GOD CONTINUE TO BLESS THE WORKS OF OUR UNCLE, DADDY AND FRIEND. Amen and Amen.