VICE President Professor Yemi Osinbajo has endorsed the Uncelebrated Nigerian Awards UK due to take place in London on September 24 praising the initiative as a laudable project that should be supported.
Due to take place at the Mayfair Banqueting Suite in east London, the Uncelebrated Nigerians Awards UK will be a classy gala dinner that will attract community leaders, guests from Nigeria and high commission officials. Organised to honour ordinary Nigerians in the UK who are excelling in numerous fields, the awards ceremony is being put together by UK based community champions including some of the committee members that organised the Nigerian Centenary Awards UK in 2014.
Professor Osinbajo is one of the special guests invited to the event and organisers are hopeful that he will attend. Other dignitaries invited include President Muhammadu Buhari's senior special adviser on diaspora affairs and the former chair of the House of Representatives diaspora committee Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa and the current chairman of the committee Hon Rita Orji. Malcolm Benson, the chair of the organising committee's publicity and marketing sub-committee urged everyone to visit the website www.uncelebratednigeriansawardsuk.com and
nominate people. He added that the enthusiastic response the event was attracting so far indicated that it was going to be a huge success.
According to Mr Benson, nominations open on April 1 and will close on June 30, giving the public three whole months to nominate people. He added that the nomination process will be transparent and all the awardees will be people highly deserving of the honour. June Douglas, the vice coordinator of the organising committee, added: "This is the first such event of its kind is ever organised and it is glad to see that it is well supported both in UK and in Nigeria. We are even getting the attention of sponsors such as Mahmood Ahmadu, the chairman of Online Integrated Solutions who has already pledged to be one of our major sponsors." Gbenga Coker, the general secretary of the Central Association of Nigerians in the UK (Canuk) said: "Data we have shows that there are large swathes of Nigerians living in the regions of the UK, especially in public service areas like local government and the National
Health Service. Many such Nigerians have never attended an awards ceremony before, let alone be honoured at one, so hopefully, this ceremony will give them their long due recognition." Ronke Udofia, the chairman of the organising committee's awards sub-committee, added that measures have been put in place to ensure the event was not London-centric. She said, teams had been sent out to focus on all parts of the UK including Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales to ensure that no Nigerian slipped through the net.
Chief Adebayo Oladimeji, the chairman of the Nigerian Council of Elders said: "We think this is a brilliant idea and will be giving the initiative our full backing as we believe it is about time the toiling man was recognised. I know that my wife is a member of the organising committee and being a team player she will work with other members in order to make this project a huge success." Henrietta Abraham, the chairperson of Nigerians in Diaspora Organisation (Nido) UK South, added that she will be urging all her members to participate in the process by nominating people they know for the awards. She added that public participation was key if initiatives like this are to become successful.
For more information contact:
Dr Nkem Ezeilo Ronke Udofia
Secretary Chair, awards sub-committee
Uncelebrated Nigerian Awards UK Uncelebrated Nigerian Awards UK