By Abdullateef ‘Lanre Ahmed
In the journey of life, some people were born with greatness, some were fortunate to attain greatness by mere coincidence and others strived and crushed the barriers that could ordinarily toss them to perpetual servitude.
Obviously, Alhaji Ibrahim Mohammed Ajia, an Ilorin-born business mogul and politician represents the latter.
Having come to realize that life is not as brutish and cruel as being portrayed in spite of the fact that he was not born with silver spoon in his mouth, Ajia dismissed the shenanigans and fixed his eyes on the ball as a goal getter, not minding whose ox is gored.
Of course, covering the mileage to success is herculean considering the countless hurdles and land mines on the way. But for his predetermination, personal sacrifices and self denial at some points, Ajia’s story would have remained same.
What could be more self denying than abandoning certainty for uncertainty with a firm decision to leave the Nigerian Police Force as Superintendent Officer, a stage replete with promising future, all in a bid to explore the world and be independent?
Unperturbed over the fate that his hanging in the balance with stoppage of monthly salaries following his decision to retire at a prime, Ajia who is the House of Representatives’ Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for Asa/Ilorin West Federal Constituency, had since moved on and thereafter floated FUNAB Group of Companies offering services in diverse areas.
At 43, Ibrahim Mohammed Ajia, a descendant of Ajia Ogbonde (Shugaban Fulani of Ilorin), is not a pushover among his peers and contemporaries. He is shrewd, suave, urbane, eloquent and amiable with infectious smile.
He is reputed for his quest for youth to fill the void created in governance. The security expert is convinced that a number of Nigerian youth are endowed to lead from the front in a critical moment that the country has inescapably found herself.
To demonstrate that the youth have come of age and would have to be entrusted with leadership, particularly those with demonstrable skills and abilities, Ajia with a scintillating sobriquet of Mai Girima among his friends, associates and admirers, has been unrelenting in his advocacy for generational change in the country’s driver seat with glaring failed attempts of some ‘gerontocrats’.
No wonder that he has, over time, been identifying with youth known for zeal and resilience, and helped in assembling and harnessing their potential for the common good of humanity.
He has demonstrated the willingness and readiness to distinguish himself prior to his sojourn in politics. His founding of Mohammed Ajia Ibrahim (MAI) Foundation was a master stroke in demonstrating what he is capable of doing as an ordinary citizen.
The foundation has, in its series of intervention programmes, raised and restored hope and even brought smiles to dejected faces when all hopes seemed lost. MAI Foundation, since its founding several years ago, had carried out intervention in the areas of free health, water provision, information and communication technology (ICT) and construction of buildings for donation.
Specifically, the foundation built block of rooms at police transit camp in Abuja and constructed toilet and provided motorized borehole at ECWA LGEA School at Oja-Iya, Ilorin, the Alma Mater of the MAI Foundation Chief Executive Officer. The water provision was meant to serve the school and the people of the community where the school is located.
In its usual characteristic manner, the foundation also raced to Police Secondary School, Ballah, Asa Local Government Area of Kwara State where it provided a motorized borehole for not only the use of the police school but the community as a whole.
Several people, especially the less privileged have also heaved a sigh of relief from the act of benevolence of the businessman cum politician whose heart is filled with lifting those on the rung of the ladder. The list is endless.
As a prominent Ilorite and Kwaran, who prioritizes service to humanity as cardinal focus even as youthful as he is at 43 year-old, it would not be out of place to dub him as a Paragon of Generational Change.
Ahmed writes from Ilorin.