Ahead of the 1 October 2022 release date, publishers of Nigeria’s premier biographical compendium on thought leaders, Portraits of Patriots: 100 Nigeria’s Foremost Thought Leaders, have released the names of the 100 men and women who made the list.
Vice-president Yemi Osinbajo; Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike; General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Pastor Enoch Adeboye; the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi; chairman and CEO of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote; and the continental overseer of RCCG, Africa 2, Pastor Ezekiel A. Odeyemi lead the pack of those profiled.
Others are the director-general of the World Trade Organization, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala; UN deputy secretary-general, Amina Mohammed; president of the African Development Bank, Akinwunmi Adeshina; former minister of external affairs, Prof. Bolaji Akinyemi; founder of the Living Faith Church Worldwide, Bishop David Oyedepo; general superintendent of the Deeper Christian Life Ministry, Pastor William Kumuyi, governor of Borno State, Babagana Zulum; and the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Bishop Matthew Kukah.
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, and his All Progressives Congress counterpart, Bola Tinubu, did not make the list.
According to the editors of the book, Kammonke Abam and Tammie Edet Kammonke, the foremost consideration in determining possible listees for the prestigious list is the extent of an individual’s inspirational value, which is judged by their level of patriotism, nationalism, and commitment to nation-building, defined by how much they put Nigeria first.
“These are people who, by their actions, put Nigeria above personal and sectional considerations. They are committed to the greatness of the country and are working towards ensuring that the country becomes what its founding fathers envisioned it to be,” they stressed.
They noted that “the book profiles true Nigerian heroes and heroines, who have, as a collective, defined a vivid portraiture of the Nigerian story through their lives.”
This, according to them, is against the often disingenuous and stereotypical reportage by some western media that portrays Nigeria and indeed, Africa as a den of crime, wars, hunger and poverty.
The editors said the ‘Portraits of Patriots: 100 Nigeria’s Foremost Thought Leaders’ will be published annually, as their contribution to curating the contemporary history of Nigeria.
They noted that the greatness of a nation is not just measured by population and natural resources, but also by the zest of patriotism of its citizens, and the ability to harness and selflessly deploy that spirit of patriotism to the best advantage of the country.
They said, “tons of Nigerian leaders are quietly working day and night, sacrificially deploying their personal goodwill to ensuring the development, unity and progress of our great country, Nigeria.
“Most of these leaders are unsung because they avoid the klieg lights that come with the media yet their contributions to the overall development of our dear country are very impactful.
“It is some of these leaders we have fished out from their relatively obscure corners for the purpose of acknowledging their selfless contributions to building a virile and united country that we will all be proud of.
“We are conscious of the fact that any biographical list generates conversation energy of who should or shouldn’t be included. This is therefore not unexpected for this work.
“We have tried within human limits to profiling the best in our estimation. We want to acknowledge that ten times the number of people listed in this edition deserve to be so acknowledged.
“However, our listing has put a bar of 100 for the purpose of getting the best of the best. Those who are not listed in this edition are necessarily not good enough.”
The compendium will be sold on Amazon and directly by the publishers on-demand basis.
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