I Will Prepare Myself And One Day My Chance Will Come
It was on Saturday when I received the call. The VP will be in town and I was requested to give a speech to the youth. Wow! This was incredible news to me.
Tuesday came. The event took off and I was a co-panelist during the first session we had. I shared a bit of my story with the audience and encouraged them not to give up. I also answered a few questions on entrepreneurship and support from the financial sector.
Then the VP arrived. The programme had to change because he didn’t have much time. He really looked exhausted. Leadership is not an easy task. I actually thought I won’t be able to give the speech again. But I was wrong. One of the VP’s aides beckoned and asked if I could sum up my speech in 15 minutes. Of course, I answered. Then, he beckoned again and asked if I could do it in 5 minutes. Yes, I answered affirmatively. My head started spinning. How do I summarize everything I wanted to say in 5 minutes? But I was ready to take this chance.
After the National anthem, I was called up for my speech. The VP and Governor of Oyo State were seated among other dignitaries. As I walked up the stage, I muttered a prayer. I remembered the words of Abraham Lincoln, “I will prepare myself and one day my chance will come”. It was the time to step out on a global platform. I looked at several cameras that clicked away. I was the cynosure of all eyes. It was a moment that may end up defining me.
Then, the VP’s aide stepped up to me and whispered into my ears, “Please can you do this in 2 minutes?”. I nodded. Even one minute was okay. Opportunities like this don’t come everytime. I took the microphone, saluted the VP and Governor as protocols demanded and charged the audience. I spoke to the youth about the importance of continuous education. I said the person who won’t read has no advantage over the person who can’t read. I charged them not to do drugs or engage in substance abuse. I said the greatest inspiration they need is within themselves and not drugs. I rounded up by sharing a short story about giving back to the society. I said it is good when we expect our country to give to us but it is better when we give back to our country. And I was done.
And I gave the VP an autographed copy of my book and CDs! Awesome event.
I sincerely appreciate that call on Saturday from the Honourable Commissioner for Youth and Sports in Oyo State, Hon Abayomi Oke. We’ve met about thrice now and each time I come off with a great impression of a very hardworking and sincere public officer. And to Hon Afeez Repete, the SA to the Governor on Youth Matters and the new Deputy National Youth Leader for APC- I’m truly grateful for all the behind the scene support.
Finally, to Prince Adetayo Adekunle, whom I never met until that Tuesday event but who actually suggested my name during their brainstorming session, I owe a ton of gratitude. May you never lack someone to stand up for you.