Ecowas Youth Council (EYC) Honours Tony Elumelu Foundation mentor and entrepreneur, Dr. Wilson E. Balogun…

… With *Kofi Annan Leadership For Integrity And Selfless Service To Humanity As A Quintessential West African Personality Of The Year 2017/2018*

Today the 1st of Feb.2018, the executive team of the EYC flew in from Liberia and Cape Verge to present this glorious award to me at the Four Points By Sheraton V.I Lagos Nigeria. Receiving the award on my behalf, the MD / CEO of Bowalds Energy Dele Agbogun thanked the organisation to honouring one of our own, he said he was not surprised as Hon. Wilson had always been known over the years for his passion for the liberation of the youths of Africa from poverty, deprivation and decadence. He believes this award will encourage him to do more for the youths in our continent.

Present at the award presentation are eminent personalities among whomare; Amb. Smith O. Varney, Professor Sidi Osho – pioneer VC of Afe Babalola University who described the recipient as; an engine room for entrepreneurship, true leader per excellence,business mogul of special breed and a global icon. Other top dignitaries present at the occasion extoled the virtue of the recipient.

Response from The Awardee at The Four Points By Sheraton, Lagos, Nigeria.

The President, ECOWAS Youth Council (EYC), ladies and gentlemen.Permit me to stand on all existing protocol. With deep sense of humility and appreciation, I would like to thank the leadership team of the EYC under the able stewardship of H.E (Amb.) Emmanuel S. William, President/Chairperson ECOWAS Youth Councilrepresenting the interest of over 200 Million Youths and 15 African Countries within the West African region, for counting me worthy of this prestigious award exclusively reserved for gallant warriors and Heads of government.

The award of the; *KOFI ANNAN LEADERSHIP FOR INTEGRITY AND SELFLESS SERVICE TO HUMANITY as A QUINTESSENTIAL WEST AFRICAN PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR is counted as one of the highest on our continent any leader aims to receive, and I am truly humbled to have been considered as *The Chosen One* for 2017 / 2018.

As a patriotic African, I have set out to empower at least One Million African Youths during my lifetime. I don’t want to be remembered as a rich man with fat bank accounts but rather, a wealthy man who came to Africa and left a legacy for generations to emulate through youth empowerment.

The task ahead is enormous, I therefore challenge all youths across our continent of Africa to rise to the challenge of lifting our energetic youth populace out of poverty, we all have a role to play by engaging in entrepreneurship.

As a global entrepreneur and former student leader who had worked closely with renowned patriots in the likes of President Olusegun Obasanjo, Sir Richard Branson, Sir Tony Elumelu, Dr BekoRansome-Kuti of blessed memory, Adams Oshiomole, the former governor of Edo state among others, I had taken the full responsibility previously by training our youths in entrepreneurship, rescuing jailed student leaders to ensure justice and many other sacrificial engagements across our continent. I see all these as my personal contributions to ourland and hope to continue, God willing.

Having reviewedthe previous recipients and stakeholders of this great award and being deemed fit to be nominated by Comrades, youths across the National Associationof Nigeria Students (NANS), Youth Assembly of Nigeria (YAN), National Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN) in West Africa, I say thank youall for your faith in me. This will act as a catalyst to my drive.By joining the Hall of fame with the likes of;Alhaji Barr. FAYE, Mohamed Lamine (Ivory Coast), former President Sirleaf Johnson of Liberia, formerpresident Mahama (Ghana),Hon. Marisa Morais (Cape Verde), Former Minister of Internal Affairs, you have laid the foundation and birth of a new beginning and I will use this empowerment to do more for African youths in the coming years.

I hereby challenge all our youths across Africa to embrace peace without which we cannot experience development, hard work without which poverty is inevitable and dedication in all fronts. Now is the time to think creatively, be innovative, challenge yourself, rise and free yourself from poverty, stand to be counted as an employer rather than looking for non-existent jobs. Together we can rescue Africa from decadence!

Dedication;I will like to dedicate this distinct award to my precious wife – Lydia Balogun-Wilson, an extraordinary leader in the field of Engineering and Oil & Gas, a passionate supporter of my dreams, an epitome of knowledge and an ardent believer in humanity. Without whom I cannot be counted worthy of this noble award today. You remain my best friend and supporter! I will forever be grateful to you. Special thanks to my extended family, you have all invested in me and I say thank you.

Special Thanks: My deep appreciation goes to the Tony Elumelu Foundation for investing in me. I will also like to appreciate the entire executive management and the global team of my company Bowalds Energy for their support in my quest to rescue Africa. I say thank you for all your support over the years, together we shall rescue Africa from poverty.

Lastly, I sincerely thank all my friends who are here physically today and others across the globe who are unavoidably absent, together we can be the solution Africa is looking for, join me to make Africa great again!

As the leadership of the EYC leave today for their various destinations, I would like to wish you all journey mercies and I can promise you that my support to this organisation will remain forever.

Long live the EYC!

Long live our Continent Africa!

Long live the Federal Republic of Nigeria!

I will therefore hand this award to God Almighty who created me in His own image, asking for His leading in the journey of life.

Together we can make history!Yes we can!

Being the acceptance speech delivered by;

Wilson Edamisan Balogun on the conferment of an award for the *Kofi Annan Leadership for Integrity and Selfless Service to Humanity 2017/2018* in V.I Lagos – Four Points by Sheraton.

1ST Feb. 2018.

On the field servicing humanity and being recognised by the presidency- 23rd Oct. 2017.

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