Special Tribute • Meet Nigeria's 37th Executive Guvernor, Ken Calebs Olumese

"Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them"- William Shakespeare





BY CERUTTI M OSAGIE 


The late king of pop and one of the greatest performer the world ever saw , Michael Jackson was not known to be a loquacious speaker.But when he speaks on any topical or global issues, his views are usually held in the most highest esteem
Once asked his views on young men having Masters or role models on their journey to the top, the electrifying king of pop said "

“The greatest education in the world is watching the masters at work"

Such statement is nothing but fact and such can be said of the man, Chief Ken Calebs Olumese aka Guvmor- he has successfully played the role of mentor/ role model to many uncountable people around the world

Only last night, 27th May 2018, he marked yet another historic landmark birthday and endless God's blessings
Either by providence or on purpose, this writer has always produced yearly tribute on the man who is affectionately known also as " De Effendi or Lord have mercy "
My first encounter with the PHILANTROPIC minded Olumese occurred many years ago via act of courage
I was in the North while the old nite shift was on so I was much of the close knit relationship with him then
Though his late nephew, Victor Olumese was best man to two of my brothers , as Young man I was not much of club man
When the old nite shift on Opebi by Awosika Ikeja, Lagos Nigeria closed shop, I wrote a letter of goodwill to the Guv
Though I got no reply, one of his ex staff that gave him the letter admitted that the Guv was very impressed by my well wishes to him
My relationship with the legendary Guv began on a certain Friday when I was driving on the popular highbrow Allen Avenue one sunny day
As I saw him parking his Mercedes Benz to enter the chartered Bank on Allen, I quickly parked my car and went straight to him and introduce myself.. I still recall him carrying a neat clutch bag
He admitted reading my letter and thanked me. That very evening, unknown to me construction works was ongoing at the new Niteshift coliseum on Salvation road Opebi
He invited me to stop by that evening and I was amazed to see a gigantic construction works going on of the new club, I initially thought it was some hotel or a cathedral
He had no office then. A make shift office was outside the big building being constructed
When the security men took me to him, he welcomed me and said " I have Cognac, stout and star, choose one "
I was told to feel at home, when his boy brought my drink, we started talking and he spoke of his dream to erect Africa's biggest club that even president's will be happy to attend
We were together for a short while, then suddenly his key men started arriving... I thought it was some get together
But alas, I never knew that such is the Guv's passion, making friends happy
I saw the arrival of one of his best men, Dr Matthew Eshalome..then came Ray Ekpu, Glamour boys president Ehi " Foxy " Braimah, was also around , Eddie Jay was in between construction site and the Guv office
As evening came, more friends came and I was introduced to few of them
That historic encounter has today turned a blessing and gift from God, today I still hold the Effendi as father figure
When the coliseum was officially opened, the country was held spell bound by what Niteshift turned into
A first class club, Coliseum is perhaps the only club in Africa that has very high standard
For example..
You are not allowed to dance by your seats as we see today in many lounges
At coliseum, you must use your glasses to drink your choice drinks.. You dare not take your drinks to dance floor
The club have played host to top Government, industrial captains, media gurus, kings and even president's
Indeed, the history of Africa's leading showbiz map cannot be complete without the name and role played by the Guv- a selfless leader whose passion is to give breaks to young talents- not just via his platforms but also via moral and financial backing
As the Guv marks yet another historic birthday, we pray that God continue to grant him more innovations in service delivery, long life and more of all his heart desires

* Surely, we are yet to hear and see the last from the 37th Governor of Nigeria



SOME VERY IMPORTANT LESSONS TO LEARN FROM GUV OLUMESE

ON REGRETS ?
“As I have said, I have no regret whatsoever for my decision to set up a night club, everything you do in life has its risks and implications. “I could have followed the footsteps of my father who is a priest, because while others are sleeping, I chose to go to night clubs. “That is what I want for my life at that particular time, nobody forced me into it. Life is about the choice make and how you face the real fact of life. “I thank God for the way He has led me, when it’s time to retire, I will decide within myself that it was time to let go and have my quiet time,” he said.
ON IF HE CAN BE CALLED SILVER SPOON KID?
How can? I am from a village. Do they even have spoons, let alone silver spoons in my village? My father happened to be a teacher. So, we lived all our lives in school compounds, because wherever he was transferred to, we followed him. We were just ordinary people. Even though Ekpoma to Benin is so close, I never got to Benin until I was 11 when I went to secondary school. I never entered a car until then. To go to Benin then, you had to go in a big lorry that used to come only on every market day, which were five days apart.
ON HIS LIFE PHILOSOPHY
My philosophy of life is to make an impact in the environment that I find myself. As a Nigerian, I never stop asking myself: what can I be remembered for? Not really in terms of pioneering, but for what I am able to achieve for my society. I have looked at myself thoroughly, and I know I cannot do politics. I feel that this is an area I can make my contribution.
ON WHY HE CHOSE THE BRAND COLISEUM
Everything about the coliseum was designed to look different from every other club. We make every extra effort to make it unique. The building called Coliseum is a Roman building where the Romans go to get entertained. The building is huge and round in shape. The name itself means huge, enormous. If you look at our own Coliseum here, though in terms of size, it is not as big as that in Rome, but look at the structure. The building is huge and round, and the function is to entertain the aristocrats.
Also, the structure stands on just six pillars. You can’t see them like this, but at the basement, you will see that the whole building is held by just six pillars. This is also borrowed from the original Coliseum.
ON INSINUATION THAT HE LOVE TO OFFER SERVICES ONLY TO RICH
He once said openly " Of course it is. That is my target audience. If I was not running a club, they will still be my target audience. I belong that that group of people, and they are the ones I associate with. I have been around for a long time and my target have always been the top class people. I cannot put up such an intimidating structure, and not target the kind of people that can appreciate it.
Don’t get me wrong, we also accept young people, successful young professionals. Many of them used to carry a card called ‘Glamour card’ but today they have grown to be gold card members. One thing in this life is that people become matured by the day. The level you put yourself is the one you will find yourself. Some as they grow, they look for a club they can go to and network, to achieve their aspirations.
When people say that we are elitist, I will not even want to use that word elitist. I would rather say that we are an exclusive, high profile club. This I don’t have an any apologies for. That is what I set out for from the very beginning. At my age and status, I have been around for a very long time, I cannot be seen operating a beer palour or a cheap joint, I cannot do that.
My club is not for everybody. Even in the church, things are not equal. They say before God everybody is equal, yet you will find out in the church there are some places some people are not allowed to sit down. The choir have where they sit, the ushers have their own positions, and so everybody has his or her own place. So for me to have a place for a selected type of people is not a big deal, that is what I set out to do. I have no apologies.

5 THINGS GUV LOVE

* He loves and uses only Azaro Perfumes for decades now

* He is man in love with meticulous attention to detail and is ready to fight you if you are a man giving to mediocrity

*He is a heavy family man, an in his beauiful villa like home in Lekki he built a room each for all his children so evety end of year they can spened tie iwth hiom and his grandchildren

* If he has time he loves to visit other clubs, am honored to have attended a few with him to tat he stated once that "Everybody knows that I go to other clubs to have a nice time. Other club owners acknowledge me when I visit their clubs. As long as it is not a club night in my club, I go out to other clubs to hang out. There is no crime in that.
* GUV is an avid reader and loves soccer to a fault his best team in the world is arsenal

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO A MAN BORN GREAT AND WHO ALSO ACHIEVED GREATNESS


© Cerutti corporation (Media & Books Unit)
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