Nigeria’s youth in need of inspiring role models, says ex-ICOMAA President


At the 52nd swearing-in/induction ceremony of students of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Ibadan, former President of Ibadan College of Medicine Alumni Association (ICOMAA) Worldwide, Dr. Abib Olamitoye, made a startling revelation.

According to him, Nigeria does not have enough role models that can genuinely motivate and inspire the youth to be successful in life.

Olamitoye stated that those who are supposed to be role models often become successful unethically, making them unsuitable for the job. He believes it will take a while for Nigeria to have the right kind of role models, but it is also up to the youth to study the lives of genuinely successful people and follow their example.

His words: “Well, I think we do not have for today, enough role models in Nigeria. Those that are supposed to be role models became successful unethically.

“So, it is going to take a while. And then, it is going to take the youth to study the lives of those who are genuinely successful, who are legitimately wealthy, whose wealth are trackable – that you can track and see that the life they have lived is stainless.

“So, these are the kind of things that can inspire our youth to the position of eminence. Therefore, if you are going to be rich, then the path to follow must be stainless. It must be with integrity. It may be slow, but it is possible.

“You have to think big and start small. Anywhere you are in the world, the principle of success is the same. Prosperity is knowing what you want to achieve. If it is money, how much? Then, find books on how to have money. Many people are not successful because they don’t know that if they can think about it, they can get it.

“This means what the mind of man can conceive and believe, the man can achieve. This is the key. Most of the people in the world of Nigeria today, as we have it, will become billionaires of tomorrow. But anything the youth want to do, they should start early. Succeeding in business is a matter of consistence and resilience. When you fall down seven times, stand up eight times.”

The Vice Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, Prof. Kayode Adebowale, also spoke at the ceremony, highlighting the need for universities to look inward for funding. He stated that with dwindling resources, universities cannot depend solely on funding from their proprietors, and they must engage alumni to plough back into the system.

The ceremony highlighted the urgent need for Nigeria to inspire and empower its youth to become successful leaders in their own right. With the right role models and supportive systems, Nigeria’s young people can achieve greatness with integrity and consistency.

“We will try to deepen our relationship with the Office of Alumni Relations that we have just created at the University of Ibadan. This will give the alumni opportunity to be able to plough back into their alma mater,” the Vice Chancellor stated.

Adebowale, who personally awarded N100,000 each to two students that obtained six distinctions in the faculty – Adebowale Ezekiel Ayomide, and Ajao Jadesola Juliana, promised to continue to award the same N100,000 prize to every student that has six distinctions, irrespective of their numbers, in the faculty till he retires from the institution.

Olamitoye, a former president of the Ibadan College of Medicine Alumni Association (ICOMAA) worldwide, and Chairman, Ibadan Central Hospital (ICH) and Academy Suites as well as Tolu Medical Centre in Lagos, however added N100,000 each for the two best students to jerk up their prizes to N200,000 for each of them, in support of the Vice Chancellor’s award.


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