The one they fondly call Oloye Adebayo Adekola Adelabu, a scion of the late prominent politician and nationalist of Ibadan origin, Chief Adegoke Adelabu (a.ka. Penkelemes) must be living up to his billing as a philanthropist of note and dexterity, with a fountain of human kindness in his veins, despite his tight and demanding schedule as a Deputy Governor (Operations Directorate) of the apex Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN. During the last Eastertide, the very articulate, unassuming and financial wizard took quality time out to identify with the less-privileged, especially the indigent widows of his home state, Oyo. At a well-attended event on Saturday, 15th of April, 2017, masses friendly ‘Bayo Adelabu, through his blossoming NGO, Bayo Adelabu Foundation, BAF, gave out individually and severally a cool sum of N15,000 each to carefully selected indigent 430 widows by way of zero interest loan. The recipients cut across all the 33 local government areas in the pacesetter state, Oyo. It was an event aimed specifically at empowering these carefully selected widows, who have been languishing in abject poverty and misery since they lost their husbands and bread winners. The Bayo Adelabu Foundation was able to make this event a reality, through its active collaboration with Seed Vest Micro Finance Bank Limited, so that the recipients could put into judicial use the largesse that was handed out to them. It was indeed a jam-packed event at the ancient city of Ibadan, as the turn-out was wholesomely awesome, with lots of people from all shades in attendance, just as well-wishers were present to add colour and camaraderie to the blaze-trailing efforts of Oloye ‘Bayo Adelabu, who since he came into public consciousness as a philanthropist and charitable persona, has not ceased to impress it on the masses that, he is ready to go to any length to help the suffering people in his immediate catchment area, Oyo State in general. Speaking furtively at the epoch-making event, the high-flying banker-turned-philanthropist, said his foundation’s recent gesture is just a tip of the iceberg, as there are still more packages in the pipeline to assist and assuage the less privileged, even as the gestures have no political undertone. “It is simply a philanthropic, generous and charitable venture, which is aimed specifically to give back to the society that made him, despite his privileged and aristocratic background,” he enthused. With his youthful and commanding presence, Bayo Adelabu was able to convince many beyond all reasonable doubts that he is one concerned man that has the spiraling effects of the present harsh economy on the lowly people in mind, thus his Easter bonanza for the widows, with many to come at subsequent occasions, albeit auspicious. It was not all a benefactor to beneficiary affair, as ace Gospel musician, Tope Alabi was on hand to serenade the crowd with her ever impactful, powerful and inspirational Christian rhythms which everyone, including the recipients danced so soulfully and admiringly in appreciation of Bayo Adelabu’s rare gesture. In the attitude of acknowledgement and appreciation, the over joyous recipients of the loan scheme, took time out to register and express their profound gratitude and appreciation to their benefactor, Oloye Adebayo Adelabu, who according to them, took out his time to ensure the programme was carefully and systematically harmonized, without any room for discrepancies and short-cuts, which are usually associated with projects of this nature. The lucky widows appreciated and applauded the fact that the programme was not hijacked by politicians, contrary to their fears and apprehensions, who would have used the opportunity to bend the laid down rules and conditions of the programme to their selfish advantage. Bayo Adelabu is fast becoming a recurring decimal in the socio-political terrain of the ancient city of Ibadan and even beyond, and this is no hyperbole, because the indices are there and verifiable. Gregarious ‘Bayo Adelabu has been in this giving attitude for years and he does not appear to relent in many years to come, because he believes it is one project he is committed to pursuing till the very last breath of his sojourn on earth, politics or no politics. ‘I just can‘t afford to continue seeing my people in abject poverty’ he concluded.
For the record, Adebayo Adekola Adelabu, a thorough-bred Ibadan native and son of late firebrand politician of yore, Chief Adegoke Adelabu of the comical ‘penkelemesi’ (peculiar mess) fame, is an astute and consummate banker with solid pedigree, having risen to the upper echelon of the nation’s apex bank, Central Bank of Nigeria,
CBN as a Deputy Governor, where he presently holds forte, doing wonderfully well in that capacity, without any blemish or financial malpractice. Until his plum appointment as Dep. Gov. of CBN, highly intellectually and humble Bayo Adelabu was an Executive Director/Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of First Bank of Nigeria, FBN Plc. He had also held top positions as General Manager of the West African Regional Head of Finance and Strategy (Consumer Banking Business) for Standard Chartered Bank, from where he was ultimately head-hunted in 2009 to assume his present enviable post. Bayo holds a First Class Honours degree in Accounting from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, and he is a proud Fellow of ICAN and a pragmatic member of the Institute of Directors of Nigeria, IoD. Apart from his sterling banking experience, officious and upwardly mobile professional Bayo Adelabu, also had a seven-year unbridled stint with upscale Price Water House (now Price Waterhouse Coopers) an international firm of Chartered Accountants and Management Consultants. He left the firm meritoriously in 2000 as an Audit Manager and Senior Consultant to join the then First Atlantic Bank as the pioneer Financial Controller and Group Head, Risk Management and Controls, and intermittently held various other top positions at the bank as Chief Inspector (2002) and Group Head, National Public Sector Business, (2003). In tow, Bayo Adelabu had over the years attended several local and international trainings, seminars, workshops and conferences too numerous to itemize. He is a bonafide member of Ikoyi Club, 1938; Jericho Businessmen Club; and a proud alumnus of the University of London School of Management Development, and the United States Institute of Internal Auditors in Orlando, Florida. He is happily married with kids. What else can one say or write about a young man of Adebayo Adekola Adelabu’s calibre, who is fast leaving his impeccable and immeasurable imprints on the sands of time, and still bent on doing more, if God and time permit him. No doubt, charismatic and well-focused Bayo Adelabu will be more poised than ever to give succor to his people if and when a greater opportunity beckons on him in the nearest possible future. Mark it.