I am one of your numerous enthusiastic followers, this I have consciously been since 2005 at least. Going through OAU then, who does not know Fela Durotoye? You were the perfect example and leader we all looked up to. You were charismatic, selfless and impacted everyone across board.
You bequeathed Eden and Springhill to us at OAU, New Buka, Gosh! I finished nearly all the books on those shelves. That became my abode during our one too many strikes at Obafemi Awolowo University then. From Will Exam hold? To Who dem be? Not to talk of the Awolowo Hall Mojo Compulsory Break… Chai! Great Ife!!! Live Forever.
Though on campus and from a distance, I garnered a lot of mentorship through you in ways words will fail me to express. Even organized events there at N1500/hour. It was a hope and encouragement we had. I read from start to finish, Madiba’s Long walk to Freedom, My Life by Bill Clinton, finished all Kenneth E. Hagin’s books and many other titles.
Uncle Fela, I am impressed by your effort at GEMSTONE, an institution set up to creating values with passion grossing a wide leadership network across the nation. For this sir, you have done well. Raising up a national system influencing leaders positively with meagre funds. Need I mention how you walked the talk of nurturing and raising a successful woman who just few weeks ago Forbes listed as one of the Top 50 Most Powerful Women in Africa; no other but the quintessential Tara Fela-Durotoye.
I cannot count the several times you will just be crying and laboring over several young people across the divides, you were called to raise Leaders and Presidents you will always say. It is so palpable anywhere around you that you love this nation. This earned you the epitaph; Mr. Nigeria. It was unfeigned really.
Guessed I am one of those very surprised when you said you wanted to be President? Like Really? I practically counted few times you boldly acclaimed you were not called to be the President, but called to raise Presidents; since I couldn’t get a convincing answer from anyone; I concluded within me that really; revelations can be progressive, and interpretation of times could be different.
My objective of writing this letter to you is my observation on the social bandwidth of people celebrating you; there, I could see your direct protégés; the Steve Harris, Toyosi Akerele of Rise among others including your colleagues in Ministry. Then, I asked where are the younger Nigerians? I categorized everyone showing you love today as a direct offshoot of your development and leadership input. But where are the millennials? Or better still, the Generation Z according to an American Think Tank who are not older than 23 years? It now led me to feel that the image of FD we knew then is not the same FD that the younger people know today; I remember a young lad said, Fela too is one of them jor, he just wants to go there and chop money, not to talk of a popular politician who best described your 2019 Campaign as mere ‘ariwo oja’.
Today, I also join others to celebrate you; may your light continue to shine, may your good dreams be fulfilled. I have a Word from the Lord for you in Psalm 20… Please read the entire nine verses. May it succor your heart and yours.
If perchance you still have it anywhere in your heart to lead this nation or led to fill a political space, then I feel you have so much to do; I am still waiting to see greetings from your fellow aspirants including the winner of the 2019 Presidential Election sending you his goodwill. You need to begin to reach the Gen Z people aggressively, and the upper political class the same way you were reaching to youths in the early 2000s.
Since the inauguration of the present administration on 29th May, 2019, I am yet to see much of your Impact and Social Development across the country like you attempted during the last elections, to be honest even as Nigeria battles the current global pandemic of Covid19, I am yet to see your direct and personal effort geared to helping us overcome the challenge (Or I may be ignorant of it), I feel this new age at 49 is a wakeup year for you.. a time to start work at another height hoping you may possibly salvage whatever it is on your heart.
Finally, I will reiterate what the Metropolitan Paul Adefarasin said few days ago; To be Fruitful, you need to deploy your gifting, To Multiply, you need to Build a strong Structure and to Fill the earth you need Marketing. Perhaps, this snippet from this sage could be of guidance sir.
God bless you FD
God Bless Nigeria
Seyi Olaobaju, an Engineer writes from Portharcourt, Nigeria.