Olanipekun Puts Smiles On The Faces Of His People
CAN there be men who are unafraid to leave safe pastures behind and turn to new things?
Can prayers be intoned in every language for men who are constantly doing good deeds and transforming lives?
At the heart of the question is not some sort of chicanery or even willingness to compromise; it is the recognition that there are still men who are constantly upping the ante in using their talent and wealth to positively affect the world around them.
Today, I array one of the greatest examples of mankind this country, and, in one instance, the world, has to offer; a man who has changed the face of philanthropy; a man who believes charity must begin at home, but with a caveat that it must also be taken beyond the home to critical confines of the country; a man whose commitment will not change even, if the world changes.
Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN) needs little or no introduction. People would readily recall his legal wizardry. They would be quick to tell you he is a lawyer of first choice for politicians who desire victory at all cost. Corporate and boardroom titans would also tell you that he has a good grasp of company and corporate law enough to turn the legal tide against any opponent.
What is, however, fast becoming a signature tune of this very brilliant, modest and meticulous personality is his knack for building men and institutions.
He is one man that would prefer to work behind the scene without a full disclosure of his philanthropic gestures, but in truth and indeed, the world will always celebrate a man who does good all the times.
In his hometown, Ikere-Ekiti in Ekiti State, he looms larger than life and who else can attest to this than the traditional ruler, Oba Adejimi Adu, the Ogoga of Ikere, who noted that Olanipekun remains the greatest philanthropist the town has produced.
Oba Adu, who spoke at the commissioning of the ultra-modern, state-of-the-art amenity ward donated by Olanipekun in honour of his late mother, Iyaafin Bosede Olanipekun, to the State Specialist Hospital, Ikere-Ekiti recently, noted that the legal luminary has contributed to the development of his town in immeasurable terms.
He said: “There is no road that leads or exits the town that does not have Olanipekun’s imprints. Is it the gateway to Ikere from Akure, where he gave a fully equipped Information Technology Centre (ICT) to his alma mater, Amoye Grammar School? Or should we talk about the sprawling edifice he donated to the Anglican Church Vicarage along Ado-Ekiti road?
“I thank God for giving us this man. I pray that more Olanipekuns would rise in Ikere.”
Guests at the unveiling of the 26-bed special amenity ward equipped with a 3D ultrasound scan, with capacity for echo-cardiography, including Governor Ayo Fayose, were awestruck by the sheer size of the structure and the modern laboratory equipment there.
The governor commended the magnanimity of the donor and urged other well-meaning indigenes of the state to emulate the exemplary conduct.
“You (Olanipekun) were not given to Ekiti by mistake. There are rare gems like you in the world. You could have chosen to put this elsewhere; you could have put it in Lagos, where you have all the contacts. If you were looking for recognition, you could have remained in Lagos, where you have the high and mighty. But you went out of your way to remember this state.
“I was going through the programme of event and I saw your past deeds. We can only pray to God to grant you long live. Government cannot do what you have done, especially at a time like this, when we cannot afford to pay the salaries of workers.
“We cannot afford to build a magnificent structure like this at this time and you have given this to the state. You have given this to the poor man, to the unborn children and they will continue to remember this act of kindness,” he said.
The indigenes of the town, who came in large numbers, gaily dressed in traditional attires, sang local folklores, celebrating Olanipekun and his forebears, thanking him for immortalising his mother by donating the edifice to the state specialist hospital.