Guyman is your solution to the means, cost and effectiveness of value exchange in Nigeria. The project was launched on 31st May, 2020 at GCLHub Ikeja, Lagos state. Despite the peculiarity of the period due to the global pandemic of the COVID-19, the turnout was quite impressive and all the recommendations of social distancing and wearing of facemasks was duly followed. Follow the link to read more on the Guyman Launch and see pictures. Consequent on the successful launch, we set out to drive benefactor partnerships. The benefactor is key to implementing our user acquisition strategy as well as our workforce management strategy.
The role of the benefactor is to help in recruiting and managing 30 workers with the help of 3 managers. We need 100 benefactors across certain cities mapped out to start. These cities are Lagos, Abeokuta, Ibadan, Ilorin, Abuja, Enugu, Umuahia, Calabar, Uyo, Port Harcourt, Owerri, Onitsha, Benin and Akure. Depending on the size and population of the economically active residents of these cities, we need only 5 benefactors in certain cities. In Lagos, we need 25 benefactors. In Ibadan 10. We need 5 in each of the remaining cities. In order to achieve this, we set aside the first 6 months from launch solely for this purpose.
Having spent the first 2 months in Lagos and hosted the first 2 benefactor seminar, we had reached out to over 80 prospects and converted 17 of them. It was clear that Lagos is as good as done. Thus, it became impertinent for us to take our gospel out of Lagos and spread to other cities indicated. For this mission, we set out on a Guyman benefactor road tour 1.0 on August 3, 2020 with stopovers at Abeokuta, Ibadan, Oyo, Ilorin, Minna, Abuja, Enugu, Calabar, Uyo, Port Harcourt, Owerri, Onitsha, Benin, Akure and we returned to Lagos on Sunday 30th of September 2020. Click here to check out the Guyman Benefactor Road Tour 1.0 Itinerary.
Take Off From Lagos
Departure: 1pm Monday August 3, 2020
I woke up on the morning of Monday August 3rd around 9 a.m. I had slept late because of some last minute arrangements. Up until 2a.m, I was still ironing my clothes and arranging my bag. In the days that led to the take off day, I had been quite busy trying to put my car in good shape, printing documents and tidying other engagements. So after all the preparations, the “D” day was here. No anxiety or excitement. I felt so calm that even for me, I couldn’t feel the weight of the task ahead. Perhaps my mind fixated on the larger goal couldn’t comprehend the enormity of the task ahead.
30 days on the road, through 15 cities, talking and convincing random people. So many things can go wrong. Bad roads, car breakdown, insecurity. Even though I had prepared, the factors I had no control over far outweighs those I did. However, that morning, I had been relatively calm. I can not remember having any negative vibes. After all, I had committed the trip into the hands of God and I am a man of faith.
We had initially agreed, Simon and I, to leave around 1pm due to some of Simon’s last minute engagement. So on waking up, I simply rounded up my stuffs, had my bath, dressed up and was ready to move. I took some pictures and bade farewell to my siblings and friends. I arrived at Simon’s place to pick him up. He was already set too so we bade his wife and 4 months old baby – Milan farewell as well. Zoom…, there it was…, the tour has started. Off to Abeokuta.
Guyman at Abeokuta
Arrival: 5pm Monday August 3, 2020 | Departure: 2.30pm Tuesday August 4, 2020
For me, it was more of uncertainty. Uncertainty of people, reception, presentation, hosting, where to sleep, what to eat, what to wear, where to pass, where will I meet bad roads, will rainfall complicate it, will the car breakdown, where will it breakdown, and much more. Coupled with the fact I have a very important private engagement slated for September 5 in Lagos, these uncertainties are further aggravated. When do I abandon the tour if I must to meet up with my Lagos engagement?
It was a smooth ride from lagos until we got to the Shagamu interchange. The roads were free of heavy traffic and as we passed Berger, we prayed God for journey mercies. At shagamu interchange, we met officers of the Federal Road Safety Corps who parked us. Confidently, I provided all that was requested from me. I was confident because I had ensured I made provision for all the law enforcement agencies. However, my car had 5 tyres with manufacture date in 2012 – 8yrs old. In my ignorance, I believed tyres with good thread depth under 10yrs old are fine. Well according to the manufacturers, my belief wasn’t wrong. Unfortunately, according to the law, 4yrs is the limit. We were booked for driving with expired tyres and fined 3,000 Naira.
We paid on Remita but still had to go to their office to submit paper payment receipt to retrieve my drivers license. At the only open business center in front of their office, we printed a page of black and white at 500 Naira. Having cleared the hurdle, it was a smooth ride to Abeokuta.
We arrived abeokuta at around 5 pm and we drove straight to NECO’s office where we were to meet up with our host – Ayodeji Collins Ogundele (my elder brother). In hindsight, Collins was just the perfect person to start from for motivational reasons. His reception was brotherly. His fiancee cooked for us, we went to a lounge later that evening to chill and eventually lodged at an interesting hotel. As you can imaging, there was a lot of catching up with my brother.
Our room at the hotel had its own private parking space. Once we drove into this space, the gate was shut behind our car. We simply came down from the car and entered into our room. I guess the idea is for more privacy but I liked the concept.
The following morning, Collins arranged for us to meet some of his NECO colleagues and his friends from NTI. Collins was already a benefactor so we had only 4 more benefactor slots in Abeokuta. Simon and I met with Collins and his 3 friends – Oyerele Kayode, Adejo Daniel, and Prince Olude Adegoke. We went on to meet with his street aunty at her shop and then Ifeanyi – a contact of Simon whom I have also met on one of his lagos trips. We left the rest of the work with Collins who will relate to his other friends. Meanwhile, Abeokuta is close to Lagos and we can always visit easily. It was time to move on.
Our last stop was at the ancient Olumo rock site and the Adire mall. Off we go unto the next stop at Ibadan. Dear old friend Newjohnz – Seyi, hope you are ready to receive us…
Guyman at Ibadan
Arrival: 6pm Tuesday August 4, 2020 | Departure: 2pm Friday August 7,2020
We went through the old Abeokuta road straight all the way to Apata, Ibadan where we had our second challenge – torn fan belt and a damaged roller. Luckily for us, a Mercedes mechanic yard was close by. We fixed the issue and moved on. By the time we got to Seyi’s house at Ireakari estate, it was dark already. My dear old friend Ojo OluSeyi John aka Newjohnz aka Dosh has always been a good cook. He ttreated us to a sumptuous meal of rice and and stew with bushmeat and ram meat. We ate our meal and I still had time to do some mentoring on fifa on PlayStation 4.
His beautiful fiancee – Kemi was very warm and she had a charming smile. We will be leaving Ibadan by Friday. The task is to have 10 benefactors here with 2 slots taken already. So many people to meet, we start tomorrow.
At Ibadan, we met with Skay, Aroks and Jibola at their apartment at Oluyole. On Thursday, we met with Iybee and Sunkey at the Palms mall. Iybee came with his wife. Sunkey also came with his wife and 2 boys. It was a lovely time catching up with friends from OAU. Seyi, Skay and Aroks are my friends from OAU Pre-degree. We also met with Awo at his fashion house – Whoopy Yun around Adeoyo, Ring road, Ibadan. Awo and his wife are doing some great skill empowerment program with their fashion house that is worthy of commendation.
In addition, at Ibadan we did something for the first time. We approached random people at the mall. The experience of random selling is always a good test to owning selling skills. On Friday, it was time to move on to Oyo to participate in the one year remembrance of my Grandpa’s demise slated for the next day. We prayed that the seed already sown will germinate and yield bountiful harvest. Meanwhile, Ibadan is close to lagos just like abeokuta and a visit is always a drive away.
Guyman at Ilorin
Arrival: 7pm Sunday August 9, 2020 | Departure: 7am Wednesday August 12, 2020
Although, I spent most of over six years of my early life at Ilorin for my secondary school at Federal Government College Ilorin, Kwara state; I haven’t been there in a very long time. This relates to why I may not have seen most of my secondary school colleagues in a long while. However, here I am and tracking as many as I can to link up with them.
I was eventually able to link up with some of my very good friends and hostel mates such as Asuzu Johnpaul, Tosin Lawal, Bashir Binukonu, Shola Malomo and Ibrahim Zubair. We also engaged random people at their Shoprite. Many of these guys I haven’t seen since 2005. As can be imagined, there was so much to catch up on. Johnpaul was the quickest to indicate interest here. At Ilorin, we stayed with my cousin – Lanlokun Dayo at his apartment at Mandate 3 Estate, Irewole area.
Another quite interesting thing that occurred at Ilorin was that I came across Mr. Mako – our Deputy housemaster of Charity house in my SS3. I am unsure Mr. Mako remembers one time he pursued me into the roof decking of our hostel then while he was nabbing students not going to the dining hall. Thank God for the timely intervention of Mr. Okafor, my strongheadedness and perhaps Mr. Mako’s flexibility, maybe I would have been disgraced by wearing only boxers and singlet to the dining hall that day. What a memory right…, lol. Mr. Mako was very happy to see me and the feeling was mutual. I met his wife and we exchanged contacts.
The journey to our next stop is a very long drive – over 9hrs even though it eventually took us over 12. We had inquired about the best route to Abuja from contacts at Ilorin and we eventually decided it was best for us to go through Minna rather than through Lokoja. A long journey awaits the next day, dear Lord, thank you thus far. It has been a mixture of thrills, adventure and zeal. Ultimately trusting you to lead the way.
Guyman at Abuja
Arrival: 6.50pm Thursday August 13, 2020 | Departure: 9.30am Sunday August 16, 2020
Simon and I all through held several conversations. Although older than I am, he is a great conversationalist. Always attentive and wisdom seeking. We discussed topics ranging from sports to music to family life to politics to religion to history to business strategy to Guyman possibilities to our women to culture to life as a daily event.
It was while we were on such a discussion when we lost a tyre around Mokwa on our way to Bida. We replaced the burst tyre with the extra tyre only to realize the tyre’s air pressure is short. Again, God came through for us as this happened very close to a village. We got help from a bike man who took me with the spare tyre to a vulcanizer at the village, waited, brought me back and helped us to fix the tyre. I appreciated him with what I had and he was also grateful.
We continued on our journey until at a certain bend rippled shadows of tree shades. The FRSC officers were just positioned as one is emerging the bend. They seemed unbothered with me so I just kept my velocity only to run into a road bump. After driving for some minutes, I realized something is wrong with the left front leg of the car. I could visibly see a bulge on my bonnet and feel the vibrations on uneven road surfaces. When I packed to check, I realized that the shock absorber’s top packing has torn and has led to the top bolt on the shock jamming against the bonnet. We had no option than to manage it to Bida, which was just some minutes away.
It was already past 12 when we arrived Bida. We located a Mercedes benz mechanic quite easily. However, they could not get the spare part for the packing from their dealers there at Bida. We then agreed to construct a makeshift so we can continue on our journey. A big washer was welded to the top of the shock packing to hold it together. It seemed to have worked perfectly for a while until bad roads along the Bida – Abuja road caused it to fail again. We bought a new spare tyre and we set back on course to Abuja.
There are two ways to get to Abuja from Bida. One is to follow Bida – Minna Road to get to Minna in order to link Minna – Abuja Expressway while the other is to go directly to Abuja by taking the Bida – Abuja Expressway. The latter should have been shorter but the road is in such an abysmal state. Although, we intended to take the Bida – Minna road, we eventually found ourselves on the Bida – Abuja road – blame it on google maps lol.
One would think that the road should at least be good for certain stretches. Not in this case. It was abysmal all through. If bandits had attacked us on that road, we would have simply been helpless because the car hardly gets to 40 mph for any 10 seconds. We were on this road till around 7pm when we decided to head to Minna and abandon our trip to Abuja until the following day. This means we had to take Lapai through Paiko to Minna. What a merry go round! Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University is at Lapai, along Lapai – Paiko road. The road is a much better road.
We eventually got to Minna around past 9pm. Bida – Minna would have taken just about 3 hrs. Silver lining is that we had a great host at Minna – Engr. Bola. He first took us to his house to eat, after which he lodged us at a hotel. The next day I had the opportunity to see my long time friend from FGC Ilorin – Joel Tsado who resides in Minna. Again, Engr. Bola came to pick us from the hotel, took us to his house for breakfast and then took us to his mechanic and settled the bill. However, the mechanic couldn’t get the packing still at Minna so he took his time to find a bigger bushing to solve the problem in a different way. His own solution worked better and eventually took us all the way to Lagos.
We left Minna at around 3pm through Suleja and got to Abuja at around 6.30pm. Our host at Abuja was Obabori Olumide aka Gidi who stays at Lokogoma. We got to his house around 8pm. Enough time to eat, drink and catch up with my friend and brother. That night, it rained. We got to Abuja on Thursday, August 13, 2020.
The next day we met Obinna and Gaby. I have fond memories of my meeting with Obinna because of his excitement at the possibilities of the project which he consequently communicated to me over chat. Gaby was also highly receptive.
That night, we had our 4th challenge. I Ran into a speed bump on our way home from Wuse 2 and the left front shock absorber was dislocated from the ball joint. Apparently, it was supposed to be held down by a bolt that is worn out. It is worthy of note that I changed the 2 front shocks the week before the tour started. Simon and I tried our best to fit it back to no avail. We eventually decided to manage it to Lokogoma that way. The following morning, we were able to fix it and see Mr. Mike, tocsai and Idris shehu. We met Tocsai and Shehu at Lugbe mall. Abuja work done, unto the next city of Enugu the next day of Sunday. Another very long drive awaits.
Guyman at Enugu
Arrival: 9.30pm Sunday August 16, 2020 | Departure: 2pm Tuesday August 18, 2020
At Abuja, I experienced the widest and best road network I have ever driven on. It was not my first time in Abuja; however, it was the first time of me driving. Abuja is a lovely city. We left Abuja at around 10am and it was a jolly ride through Lokoja. We passed Ajaokuta, through Ohunene, Adoma and instead of making our way to Idah, Google map saw a route to the left at Allomo to be a faster route. Unknown to us that construction was abandoned on this road.
After driving for a while on the route, the first sign was that it was a lonely road. We were not seeing any travel bus or vehicle on our way again. Meanwhile, we kept going hoping for an intersection to turn off. At some point, the tarred portion of the road finished and we continued on the graded portion. The map was showing an intersection so instead of going back we had hoped to make it there. We passed through a village following tyre tracks until we got to a the village stream that is not motorable at all – only paths that motorcycles ride. At that point, we had to turn back all the way to the Allomo junction and head to Otukpa in benue state where we joined the Markurdi – Enugu road.
As it happens, Otukpa is Simon’s wife’s village. His own village – Orokam was just ahead as well. From this point, it was bad road all the way to Enugu. Our misadventure lost us about 4 hours and we ended up getting to Enugu around past 10pm. Unlike our previous stops, we had no host at Enugu and we had to look for an affordable hotel to lodge in a central area. We eventually stayed 2 nights at Enugu and left for Calabar on Tuesday, August 18.
Enugu has an undulating landscape that is very peculiar to it. The only similar city with such undulating landscape is Onitsha and Suleja. There was a milky way that descended a very high hill that welcomed us to the city. It was quite fascinating. Another thing peculiar to Enugu is the native Igbo food called “Abacha – African salad”. The abacha in itself is not perculiar to Enugu. It is sold all over even in Lagos. However, at Enugu, the way people go to bars to drink and eat pepper soup or eat nkwobi or isiewu or fish and so on is the way people go to joints to drink beer and eat abacha. This was quite peculiar because in my time in the east growing up, this was the first time I experienced this. Abacha joints was filled with people at evenings and nights. Courtesy of 2 of our prospects – Ozongwu and Ken, we ate abacha and stepped it down with drink of choice.
Another prospect we met at Enugu is Mr. Kufre whom we had to see for a second time at Akanu Ibiam International Airport Enugu. Mr. Kufre was such an inspiring man. Ozongwu – could not wait for everything to start. I met a nice lady randomly too at Enugu who works with UBA. Her name is Nkem. Our next stop after Enugu was supposed to be Umuahia. However, after a long review of our route and contacts, we agreed to bypass Umuahia and instead head to Calabar through Abakaliki in Ebonyi State.
Guyman at Calabar
Arrival: 4.30pm Tuesday August 18, 2020 | Departure: 2.30pm Wednesday August 19, 2020
It was my first time in Ebonyi state. Likewise, it was my first time in Cross river and Akwaibom. The other cities we went to I was quite familiar with. The road from Enugu to Calabar through Ebonyi was majorly good. Worth mentioning was a nice police man we met at Abakaliki – a Yoruba man. He engaged well with us and spoke to my dad over the phone. He eventually exchanged contacts with me and when we eventually arrived at Calabar, he called to check up on us. We entered Calabar through Odukpani.
There is a myth common in the west that most people in Crossriver and Akwaibom are very fair and beautiful which makes people jovially refer to them as children of ‘mamiwater’. This was far from the reality. In Calabar, there were more dark skinned people than fair. In fact for every fair skinned person you see, you must have seen 20 dark skinned. At Akwaibom, the ratio was much lower but dark skin was clear majority. We saw the border of Calabar with Cameroon. Calabar is a calm and nice city. While in Calabar, I ate the sweet afang soup.
At Calabar, we met with Sunday who eventually connected us with Samuel Irem, Patric Onah and Ifogbe Moses Friday. We met these guys at Calabar mall. The last person we met before leaving Calabar for Uyo was Mr. Joseph Iyana – an inlaw to Simon at airport. Mr. Joseph was also a very pleasant man. Last person worth mentioning was the guy we met randomly on arrival to Calabar at a restaurant were we ate. His name is Douglass. We left Calabar for Uyo the next day we got to Calabar.
On our trip, we have had several reasons to see where Guyman could have applied to us and helped. The clear cases were those of mechanics required when vehicle broke down. At Calabar, getting a hotel to stay was quite challenging. Douglas had referenced us to a hotel which after all the stress to locate the hotel, it turned out that they were shut and not in operation. Getting a hotel within our budget then became challenging. Had it been Guyman was functioning already, we would have simply posted our need and sat back while we begin to receive calls from several hotels that are available, willing and ready to serve us. In addition, we would have had the bargaining edge. Thank God after much ado, we got a hotel that served us.
Guyman at Uyo
Arrival: 8pm Wednesday August 19, 2020 | Departure: 11am Friday August 21, 2020
Good road welcomed us into the city of Uyo. It was a pleasant relief considering the state of the road connecting the two sisterly states of Akwaibom and Crossriver. The road from Odukpani to link Calabar – Ikot Ekpene road was mostly bad. We were hoping that when we cross the river boundary into the Akwaibom, we will have a better road experience but unfortunately it was in similar state if not worse. However, when we turned off the Calabar – Ikot Ekpene road to head to Uyo, the highway was solid all the way into Uyo city. The city has good road networks. Same with Calabar. Heard Akpabio is to be credited for a lot of the good works.
When we left Uyo for Port Harcourt, we followed Abak road to link up with Abak – Ikot Ekpene road and then turn off into top faith road cutting through Mmidim and Etim Ekpo. State governors should be pay extra attention to the entrance of their states. When foreigners visit for the first time, this impression might be all it takes to bring investments and prosperity into the state. On this tour, Abuja stands out on impression. While Enugu’s milky way and Uyo’s highway was also impressive, the roads leading to these cities within the same state are nothing to write home about.
At Uyo we also stayed at a hotel. We met Oto-Obong Billy at Planet121 FM, Ekong Etiyene, David Akuma, Joe and other random people. We left Uyo on Friday, August 21, 2020 and made a stop at Mr. Udofa’s compound at Mmidim, Abak.
Guyman at Port Harcourt
Arrival: 3.30pm Friday August 21, 2020 | Departure: 6.30pm Sunday August 23, 2020
Port Harcourt was a signal of home return for us. After ascending our tour map from Lagos to northern Abuja, it is the farthest we are going to in the south-south after which we are heading home through the east to west. At Port Harcourt, we had already covered 7 cities; 8 if Minna inclusive. Another reason for excitement for Simon and I was that the city was a familiar place with plenty of contacts to reach.
When we arrived, there was still time to meet some prospects after which we tracked our host for the first night – George. George was managing at a room self-contain apartment and he was still very magnanimous to take us in. Perhaps if either of Simon or I had prior idea of his space, we would have sought alternatives. By the time we got to the place, there was nothing we could do again than to manage with him for the night. The following day we were hosted by Rufus who I am certain was divinely arranged. Rufus was just heading home from the hospital where he has been with his hospitalized wife for a day or two when Simon called him to get contact of their mutual friend who manages a hotel. Rufus was insistent on why Simon needed the contact and when he told him we needed an affordable hotel to sleep, he offered to take us in. This act of his was the reason we met him on the tour and shared the Guyman gospel with him.
During our stop at Port Harcourt, we met several people – Francis John Ambrose, Chukwuemeka Anwuka, Keneth Ogunbor, Naomi Terdo, Nwelih Henry, Anyaegbudike Rufus, Reachman Iwelumoh, Helen Anthony, Felicia Okafor, Elimihele Ahmed Tijani. At Port Harcourt, Wike was constructing several flyovers and contributed to traffic restrictions and diversions.
One other thing we did at Port Harcourt was to service our car and do wheel alignment. It had become important to do wheel alignment intermittently following the makeshift arrangement for the left shock packing.
Furthermore, another group of people we met during our stay was the group organized by my good friend – William Nwachukwu. We met them after their church service at Mark Ogbonna Avenue, Off Alcon road. This group had a lot of students. Interacting with students who whose interest is at the Referrer level was a pleasant experience for me. Some of these guys are Kennet, Daniel Jackson, Stephen Alali, Ansalem, Ezike, Theophilus. There were a lot of contacts we couldn’t see because of our time constrain.
Guyman at Owerri
Arrival: 8.30pm Sunday August 23, 2020 | Departure: 6pm Tuesday August 25, 2020
Owerri was a high point on this tour. Even though the reception gotten by Guyman everywhere was great, at Owerri, the 5 benefactor slots were being jostled for. We had met with Akujobi McGeorge, Terry Akpofure and Kelly who had shown interest. However, on meeting with our 4th prospect, he wanted all the 5 slots. This created some headache for Simon being at the center. It was a lovely headache, one which we wished we had all trip long.
We were hosted by Emma – such a jolly fella. We met with Pastor Obi and Chinedu Chinedu Jnr Jerry. By the time we were leaving, Terry already had his BDEs who also had the opportunity of listening to us.
Meanwhile, another experience at Owerri was meeting someone who apparently was doing a similar project. Of course his demeanor was not very welcoming. I had only shown him the flyer and was just delving into explanations when he cut in and told me how busy he is and how the model was only good to attract employees and not business men. He advised me to come up with a tight business plan and seek for funding. I took his advice in good faith and thanked him for his time.
Owerri was obviously the peak of our tour in the sense that the slots were jostled for. It was a pleasant experience.
Guyman at Onitsha
Arrival: 8.20pm Tuesday August 25, 2020 | Departure: 12.45pm Thursday August 27, 2020
We arrived Onitsha around past 8 at night and it was one of those times the usefulness of Guyman could have saved us a lot of stress. We ended up in a hotel at Obosi. The next day, we tracked my longtime friend – Freshman J.
Freshman was a broadcaster with Madonna FM back then in 2011 when we met. At the time, I was still hoping to become a top artist and some of my friends I met at Innoson Vehicles Nnewi during my internship with similar musician dream had introduced us. We were all hoping that Freshman will help us promote our songs on radio. Freshman and I went on to become close friends and when he was relocating to Onitsha to commence work at Sappienta FM where he still currently works in January 2012, I had the privilege of driving him down. He has always been a jolly fellow. When we linked up with him the following day – Wednesday, he insisted on hosting us and he lodged us into a very nice hotel at GRA Onitsha. We had fruitful discussions too.
Another person we met at Onitsha was Nonso who is a contact of Obinna at Abuja. Nonso came to meet us at our hotel and he was all in. Before we arrived Onitsha, Akujobi McGeorge from Owerri had already convinced one of his contact resident at Onitsha as well. With Onitsha in good hands, it was time to head to Benin. Passing the Niger Bridge was so elating. Closer to home than ever after over 3 weeks on the road.
Guyman at Benin
Arrival: 3.10pm Thursday August 27, 2020 | Departure: 2pm Saturday August 29, 2020
We experienced another instance of Google Map leading us astray on our way out of Onitsha. The map took us through the middle of the main market. This was so frustrating and we lost about 3 hours if not more. Once we climbed the bridge, road was clear and it was smooth riding all the way to Benin city. It is election season in Edo state and as can be expected campaign posters greeted us.
Something else worth commenting on was the cluster of checkpoints in the southsouth and southeast compared to their frequency in the west and even Kwara, Niger and Abuja. The frequency of checkpoints increased as we passed Kogi into Benue from Otukpa. At several instances, you can find military and police formations every 1km. However, the west was safe haven. On those routes, we as travelers felt safe with the security presence and couldn’t really complain. Could it be strategic, coincidence, or does it relate a more fundamental question of nature or culture?
Our host at Benin was my dear friend – Asimiyu Musa who also doubles as a younger brother to my dear friend and university colleague – Asimiyu Mustapha. We met him where he works at BEDC office close to Ring road. That evening, we were still able to track a prospect at a location in GRA – her name is Sylvia. Sylvia was very pleasant, well-spoken and intelligent. It was an opportunity to preach the gospel at once to Musa as well. We had an enjoyable discussion with shared visions and possibilities.
The next day, we visited my main man – Prince Uba my friend and colleague at universty. When I came to Lagos for my NYSC in 2013, Prince and I engaged in some major oil dealings before he eventually relocated to Benin. Oil at the time was my hope of breakthrough – well, the one that seemed fastest with some ease. All we needed to do was facilitate deals i.e connect buyers and sellers. Unfortunately, this is the business with the highest number of fraudsters. Everyone had a title. If it is not Pastor, it is Chief, Elder, Barrister, Architect, Engineer, Bishop, Prince, etc. Everybody with a ready excuse as to why they couldn’t answer your calls when the deal is bashing.
As easy as the money sounds, the business has wrecked several people. Or perhaps that I didn’t experience a win here is the reason for my assertions. I left oil business for the same reason I left music – my efforts can’t determine results or at least it is a long shot. Success is dependent on too many factors that leaves most of it most of the time to chance. I always love to be the author of my own fate or at least try.
The last person we met at Benin was a beautiful mother of 3 girls and their lovely dog – Kim. I remember the last daughter – Jemima coming to meet me to ask of my name. Mrs. Abigail Aki-Cobham was very hospitable.
Guyman at Akure
Arrival: 5.27pm Saturday August 29, 2020 | Departure: 12pm Sunday 30, 2020
From Akure, It was more of a feeling of accomplishment. A day from home. My family and friends were also very excited. I had planned a very important event for September 5 before our sojourn. Almost home after almost 4 weeks on the road in 13 cities – it was a silent feeling of victory. Left Lagos in faith, of all the things that could go wrong to preach a gospel of shared prosperity. To me, the journey was more spiritual than physical. Walking with God is by faith.
We met 2 prospects – Remi and Richard that evening we entered Akure. Simon did the honors to preach the gospel this time without any reference to me and he did a wonderful job. As I watched him speak with much passion and knowledge of our scheme, I felt a surge of happiness flow through my spine. This is God at work. I cannot begin to quantify Simon’s impact on the trip. His contacts were very vital. His calm and attentive demeanor also makes a very good travel buddy.
That night, we slept at the residence of Mr. and Mrs. Eko-Davies – parents to my long time friend – Aduragbemi Eko-Davies. The last time I saw Daddy and Mummy was back in 2007 when I went to chill with Adura for a few days shortly after our OAU Predegree program. I was surprised they could still remember me perfectly. They were very warm and accommodating. The next morning of Sunday 30th of August, We left Akure- our last stop on the Guyman Benefactor Road Tour 1.0 at about 12pm. Lagos here we come.
Guyman back to Lagos
Arrival: 4.40pm Sunday August 30, 2020
Finally, we got back to Lagos around 5pm on Sunday, August 30, 2020. We drove straight to Simon’s house to drop him. It was a thing of joy to behold as the wife and kid reunited with their dad. We ate and blessed God. Of course I boasted that I now know her village – lol. On my way home, I was filled with songs of thanksgiving. Thank God for the success of Guyman Benefactor Road Tour 1.0. We keep moving.