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Captain Hosa’s 64th posthumous birthday: Family awards scholarship to indigent children

By Michael Egbejule, Benin City.
19 February 2022   |   2:43 am
For the children and family of Edo businessman and philanthropist, Late Capt. Idahosa Wells Okunbo, there is no gainsaying that leaders have a responsibility to open doors and create opportunities

For the children and family of Edo businessman and philanthropist, Late Capt. Idahosa Wells Okunbo, there is no gainsaying that leaders have a responsibility to open doors and create opportunities for others and to support them to reach their full potential.

A cross section of recipients

Children of the departed Capt. Okunbo, led by his eldest daughter, Olori Atuwatse III, took it upon themselves as a responsibility bequeathed to them by their patriarch to open doors and create opportunities, as well as support others, particularly indigent children and their families to reach their full potentials.

This responsibility came to fruition as they recently offered scholarship opportunities to 100 indigent school children in both public primary and secondary schools in Edo State to enable poor students to access education and actualize their dreams.

The scholarship programme was conceived by the children as part of activities to commemorate the 64th posthumous Birthday of their beloved patriarch.

As the family gathered together for the celebration in Benin City, it was a moment of fond memories of the life and times of Capt. Hosa, as his children, families, friends and associates eulogised him.

The eldest daughter and wife of the Olu of Warri, Olori Atuwatse III, while relishing beautiful memories of late father, described Late Capt. Okunbo as a good man, too good to die.

Olori Atuwatse III wished the pupils and students who made the list of beneficiaries of the scholarship programme well in their pursuit, pledging the family’s support for them at all times.

“We are paying school fees for 100 students in memory of our father because he was very passionate about education.”

She added that education is key to the liberation of a people, while knowledge is power for their upliftment, adding that her father was a lover of education and very passionate about the development of children.

Describing the life of Late Capt. Okunbo’s as a testimony of God’s goodness and benevolence, the children informed the audience mostly comprising students, pupils and their teachers, that the Late Capt. Okunbo was a man from a humble background.

Olori Atuwatse III hinted that her father’s story is that of a man who started from grass to grace and from zero to hero as he was not born with a silver spoon.

She said the family gathered together to commemorate his 64th Posthumous Birthday with children of the poor as they soberly celebrate the day, which for her signifies that the Late Okunbo will always be remembered and never forgotten.

According to Olori Atuwatse III, sharing the story of their late father with the school children is to inspire the children and also to create a better future for all young people to achieve success like the Late Capt. Idahosa.

Olori Atuwatse III, who recounted how her father struggled during his early years as a child growing up in Benin city, expressed optimism that her father’s passion for education is no doubt what positioned him for greatness as he became a successful businessman until he passed.

Among those who benefited from the Late Capt. Hosa Okunbo’s 64th Posthumous Birthday scholarship programme, were 20 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the Edo IDP Camp, as well as 80 students from public primary and secondary schools in Edo state making a total of 100 beneficiaries.

The commemoration ceremony climaxed when the children, led by Olori Atuwatse III and her other siblings, visited the mausoleum of the late billionaire in Benin, where they offered prayers to posthumously mark his 64th birthday.

Some teachers who appreciated the gesture from the children of the late Edo businessman and philanthropist urged others well-meaning Nigerians in the state and country to emulate the Okunbo family to give succour to indigent children.

The teachers and guardians offered prayers for the protection of the family and sued for the sustenance of the scholarship programme so that more indigent school children could benefit in the future.

The wife of the Olu of Warri Kingdom noted that the over 100 beneficiaries selected from public primary and secondary schools in Edo state received N75,000 and N100,000 respectively, adding that the public primary and secondary schools that benefited from the Late Capt. Idahosa Wells Okunbo scholarship programme includes Community Primary School, Ogbe Primary School, Edokpolor Primary School, Imaguero Secondary School, George Idah Primary, Ologbosere Primary School, Itohan Girls’ Secondary School and St.Maria Gorretti Girls’ Secondary School.

She, however, pledged the family’s sustained cooperation and support for the development of indigent school children in the state. Late Capt. Okunbo passed on August 8, 2021, in London, after a brief illness and was buried on October 8, in Benin City, the Edo State capital.

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