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Ambode’s La Roche Leadership Foundation Opened for Public



By Lekan Lawal

La Roche Leadership Foundation , a non-profit organization founded in 2013 by the Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode to offer leadership mentoring and empowerment for the Nigerian youths  has formally  been opened to members of the public.

The Foundation, which has the main mandate of attending to the welfare and prosperity of Nigerian students in all facets of their educational endeavours, was opened to the general public at an event attended by dignitaries from all walks of life on Saturday in Lagos.

The Governor, who has since stepped aside from active participation in the affairs of the Foundation to avoid conflict of interest, was said to have founded the organization owing to his passion for reaching out to children and young ones, especially by creating and sustaining a positive and enabling educational environment for Nigerian students.

Director, La Roche Leadership Foundation, Mrs. Marina Osoba; Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor, Lagos Global, Prof. Ademola Abass; member, Board of Directors, La Roche Leadership Foundation, Mrs. Titi Anibaba; Chairman, Board of Directors of the Foundation, Justice Adesola Oguntade (rtd.); Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Political Affairs, Engr. Adekunle Olayinka; Director, Legal Services, Lagos Internal Revenue Service (LIRS), Barr. Seyi Alade during the formal launching of La Roche Leadership Foundation at Gbagada, Lagos

Director, La Roche Leadership Foundation, Mrs. Marina Osoba; Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor, Lagos Global, Prof. Ademola Abass; member, Board of Directors, La Roche Leadership Foundation, Mrs. Titi Anibaba; Chairman, Board of Directors of the Foundation, Justice Adesola Oguntade (rtd.); Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Political Affairs, Engr. Adekunle Olayinka; Director, Legal Services, Lagos Internal Revenue Service (LIRS), Barr. Seyi Alade during the formal launching of La Roche Leadership Foundation at Gbagada, Lagos

Part of the objectives of the Foundation was to sponsor students by way of scholarships, grants and organizing capacity building seminars, workshops and other related activities and opportunities to students and young people, as well as collaborating with other stakeholders such as government agencies, NGOs, foreign bodies to raise awareness on the state of education in Nigeria and intervening with solutions.

The Foundation, which has service, diligence and integrity as watchwords, also has the mandate of inculcating leadership values and training as a way of grooming future leaders in all spheres of life.

In her welcome address at the event, Administrator of the Foundation, Mrs. Marina Oshoba said the formal launch marked a milestone in the life of the Foundation, as it would offer a relationship between the organization and the core people it had been working to serve who are the children and young ones.

She said: “We started our registration process in 2012 but we got our permit by 2013 and even from before then till date, we have been working on our six projects which are the Flags Project, Tool Box Project, Internship Project, Toy Box Project, Support Our Schools Project and Our Chosen Youth Project.

“Since we got our new facility last year May, we are now fine-tuning our in-house work such as our Book Bank, E-library, Mobile Library, Resource Centre and E-book Club. We have a facebook page and we have a blog that we write every two weeks where we talk about education and leadership mentoring,” Mrs. Oshoba said.

For instance, the Administrator said through the Schools Support Project, the Foundation hoped to answer to infrastructural needs of schools in Lagos State and work with manufacturers of building and construction materials, building technology professionals and other well meaning sponsors to help refurbish and upgrade public schools, while the Foundation has so far won three awards for projects executed at Government Technical College, Agidingbi; St. Jude’s Primary School, Ebute Metta and Ojokoro Community Library.

Speaking on funding, Mrs. Oshoba said for now, the Board of La Roche Leadership Foundation was not favourably disposed to the idea of soliciting for funds from the public, but felt the Foundation has to first build track record, adding that the believe is that people must first see what the Foundation has been able to do to be persuaded to give.

Also speaking at the event, Chairman of the Foundation and retired Justice of the Supreme Court, Justice George Oguntade said the essence of such Foundation could not be down played, as it would go a long way in reaching out to people.

He said: “If you look at the starting position of the Nigerian society, you will know that we are virtually at the end of the ladder in almost all aspects and so foundations like this will hasten development in Nigeria and I think it is commendable.”

Justice Oguntade, however, expressed the hope that the Foundation would be replicated across the State and later across the country, so that the advantages can be evenly distributed.

Also speaking, Special Adviser to Lagos State Governor on Oversees Affairs, Professor Ademola Abass Foundations such as La Roche would help reach out to people who are often overlooked by mainstream governmental agencies in the society either because their needs do not fall within the mainframe policies of government at any given point in time.

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APPOEMN Boosting Nigeria’s Economy with Annual Contribution of 55bn in GDP



By Segun Lawal
The Association of Professional Party Organizers and Event Managers of Nigeria (APPOEMN), is set to convene TEIC 2019, a 3-day transformational network of learning and cutting edge exponential conference for members of the association from September 18 to 22 2019.
Addressing the press in Lagos on Sunday September 8, Vice President of the association, Mrs Adefunke Kuyoro disclosed that the theme of this year’s conference, the third in a series, being ‘Stepping Up’; presented an opportunity for event industry practitioners to put their brands ahead if not at par with industry leaders and players in the event space.
“We call all eventprenuers/practitioners to ‘step up’ their game in the industry, because the more excellent our brands become, the better our event industry in Nigeria; be you a vendor, planner, venue owner, service provider in the event industry. It is time to step it up for good.” Kuyoro posited.
Speaking further about the 3-day conference, Mrs Kuyoro said what informed TEIC (The Event Industry Conference), expected to assemble key professionals from across the country and a spectrum of events service providers, to share experiences, perspectives, insights and latest developments in the events industry, was the desire to mix international growing trends with existing traditions.
According to her, “events have always been a part of our culture, but in the recent past it has received a sudden boost, apparent by the increase in coverage received from the print and social media.”
“The 3-day conference is drawn up to provide technical sessions and poster sessions on cutting edge issues related to the event industry, and will also provide ample opportunities for networking and socializing with colleagues.” Kuyoro averred.
TEIC 2019 is expected to kick off on the 18th of September with a Masterclass scheduled for 250 participants, where evolving issues and trends in the industry will be learnt, culminating in a bonding after-party  in what can best be called “Senior Lit of a lifetime”
Day 2 of the event will be devoted to Corporate Social Responsibility, CSR by way of easing motorists’ driveway through Lagos Island and mainland in a give back approach to law-abiding Lagosians.
To that extent the association has partnered with the Lagos State Transport Management Agency (LASTMA) to coordinate traffic in heavy-traffic-prone areas in super hyper traffic time between the hours of 7am-9am, with 350 members of the association expected to take part in the exercise. Next on Day 2 agenda will be a yardsale (a kind of compensation plan) to the industry where various valuable items will be circulated especially to new entrants, to boost their brand equity in the trendy event market space at giveaway rates.
The icing on the cake in regard to TEIC 2019, is its culmination on the last day of the event with a dinner and award night, where up to 500 guests are expected to attend the TEIC Award for the year, as the best practitioners in diverse categories of the industry will be appreciated.
Speaking to SMILE on the criteria adopted for the award, Mrs Kuyoro said nominations were done by members of the association on the different categories with 5 to 6 nominees in each category, while voting was done online to produce the list of recipients for the final awards, all in strict compliance to the best ethos.
With respect to some challenges in the industry cutting across relevant training, optimum service delivery, trust and abuse issues etc., Mrs Kuyoro told SMILE that APPOEMN has over the years been able to set the standard for operation in the industry which has made the association a credible force, saying the association is not just an all-comers affair, as prospective members are observed for up to two years before being registered in the organisation,  while penalties which include suspension or dismissal, depending on the degree of rules infringement are also meted to erring members, all in a bid to make the industry attain and maintain standard global practices, assuring that such erring members would at the end of their penalty also have to reapply again, if qualified to. Training opportunities she added were also being constantly offered to members to ensure best practices.
APPOEMN is an association with a mix of seasoned events professionals that have been at the forefront of event planning and coordination in Nigeria, for the past 15 years. The association has risen to become a major player in the socio-economic space in the Nigerian polity contributing 55bn to the country’s GDP in budgets, appreciatively deflating the country’s unemployment balloon.
The Event Industry Conference (TEIC) is an annual event of APPOEMN and this year’s would be the third edition of the event.
Tickets to attend the event can be obtained via or 08033053529, 08033728555 while interested event practitioners can also join the association by sending such requests to
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Why Are You Afraid Of Party Congress? – Amaechi Replies Abe



Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Rivers State, and second term Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi has queried why the immediate past senator representing Rivers South-East, Sen. Magnus Abe has started showing early signs of apprehension for the forthcoming congresses of the APC in Rivers State.

The minister was reacting to a statement in which the former senator kicked against the holding of congresses of APC in Rivers State. In that statement, Abe resorted to name calling and uncouth language to describe the planned congresses announced by the Minister to his supporters.

It would be recalled that Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi had announced to his supporters during the reception in Abuja that followed his inauguration as a second term minister that they (supporters) should begin to prepare themselves for congresses as part of rebuilding and repositioning the party in Rivers State. However, a few days after, Sen. Abe, while addressing his supporters in Port Harcourt, in an inexplicable outburst of emotions, questioned why the minister should ask his supporters to go home and prepare for congresses.

However, in a swift reaction, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi expressed surprise that Abe would resort to unguarded language to express his indisposition and fear for congresses even when he (Amaechi) did not give date and time of congresses to his supporters.

“I addressed my supporters to go home and prepare for congresses, I didn’t give them any date and time, and those are the responsibility of the national secretariat.

“Senator Magnus Abe has no reason to be afraid of congress; he should tell his supporters to also prepare for congresses of the party in the State since he says he is very popular. A popular politician should be very happy anytime congress is on the table,” Amaechi declared.

The Minister declined to respond to sundry comments made by Abe in his statement saying such were obvious signs of frustration on the part of the former senator.

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Amaechi Promises Better Times For Staff



Minister of Transportation Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi has declared free transportation services for staff and management of the ministry.

Amaechi said the decision was to help ameliorate the challenges faced by the staff in the discharge of their civic duties.

The Minister stated this at an interactive session with staff and management of the ministry, Monday.

Amaechi said, “knowing the background I come from, I felt that you people are spending more money having to transport yourselves to work and I’m surprised that they are collecting money from you for those buses.”

Directing the Permanent Secretary to ensure the bus services are free of charge henceforth, he added, “We’ll increase the number of of staff buses, fuel and maintain them ourselves.” Amaechi further assured that to improve on service delivery, training and retraining of staff personnel will be given top priority.”We would devise a means of training and retraining our staff, be it locally or internationally; and it will be according to our resources,” he said.

Amaechi also directed the ministry’s Permanent Secretary to liaise with authorities of NYSC to post some doctors to the  Ministry of Transportation in view of establishing a medical center for staff of the ministry.

“Let us get the NYSC to post to the ministry at least two doctors, so we can ascertain the cost of establishing a clinic for our staff. This will enable those who fall ill to get free treatment,” he said.

The Minister also noted that henceforth, provision of laptops for Engineers will be included in the ministry’s budget.

In her remarks, Minister for State, Transport, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki assured workers of smooth working relationship, stating that she would work together with Amaechi to improve on staff welfare. “Whatever the Minister (Amaechi) had been doing I will follow suit, I will always be behind him and I will do my best to always ensure that we do what will promote staff welfare,” she said.

Earlier, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transportation, Sabiu Zakari said the essence of the interactive session was to have a better understanding with the Ministers.

He enjoined the staff to provide support to the Ministers to achieve the vision of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.

According to him, “the purpose of this interactive session is to have a better understanding with the Ministers. It is an opportunity for us to air our views and understand what they (Ministers) want us to do in this second term of Mr. President. It is our hope that as we gave our support to the Hon. Minister of Transportation during the first tenure, we’ll give even more this second term.”

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