AFN AWARD: POPULAR ABIA STATE BUSINESS GURU, DAN OKEKE EMERGES AFN PERSONALITY OF YEAR 2018 

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After series of evaluation and research, Abia Facts Newspaper Editorial Board and AFN Award Committee have nominated Chief Daniel Chimezie Okeke as ABIA FACTS NEWSPAPER PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR 2018.

Chief Daniel is a successful Abia State businessman, who started in the shipping industry and has expanded to other business areas including hospitality industry under the Swiss Spirit Franchise.

He is a politically aware individual with his focus mainly on good governance and dividends of democracy for the people of Abia State and Nigerians in general.

READ HIS FULL PROFILE;

Daniel Chimezie Okeke, was born in Ubila Ututu, which is part of the present-day Arochukwu Local Government Area of Abia State, Nigeria. I would like to quote him as he explicitly describes the circumstances of his birth and childhood. “I was not fortunate enough to grow up under the nurture and warmth of my mother. Before I could mutter ‘Mama’ like other infants, the cold hand of death struck and snatched Mama away from mother earth. And thus, was started for me, a tortuous beginning that took Providence not much to put right.” Only a relatively small number of people, worldwide, can make this kind of statement about the circumstances of their birth. Most citizens of the world are normally nurtured to maturity by their biological parents.

Chief Daniel Chimezie Okeke

Dan started school in Ubila-Amaetiti Primary School, the same school where his father was a teacher. When he graduated from primary school, he was enrolled in Umunnato Secondary Technical College, Ututu. Dan’s father was poised to play that human ladder with which Dan was to climb to greatness. Dan describes it thus: “Father wanted me to take after him. He wanted me to be great and attain a height no one else in the family had ever ventured… Father wanted to give me the best of everything. Most especially he wanted me to be well educated.” But those lofty plans were cut short by the sudden and most unexpected death of his father, at a time when Dan had just been promoted to Class 2 in the secondary school. The death of his father at that time appeared like the sunset of Dan’s life. But, it was not to be, for God had positioned some angels on his path to lift him up to his destined height.

It can be said that the first human angel, as it were, in whose hands Dan began his journey of survival was his grandmother. If grandmother did not invoke the rare and unusual initiative of inviting younger women to breastfeed Dan, when his mother died, as he was only seven months old, how could he have lived? Whatever Dan has grown to become today was made possible because he lived through those unsure early days of his life. Thanks to grandmother.

Worthy of mention also are Mr. G. O. K. Aluoko, and Miss Grace Kalu (teachers in Umunnato Secondary Technical College) as well as Rev. Benard Ubuo (Dan’s pastor at that time). These people whom God called at that point in time, answered the call, and voluntarily contributed, out of their meagre resources, to ensure that Dan’s school fees were paid. Rev. Ubuo and his wife, in addition, took Dan in, fed him and gave him a room in their residence.

The first happening that can be called a turning point in Dan’s life was when Uncle Martin Ebi, his mother’s younger brother, invited him to leave the village and come to Port Harcourt. At that point Dan did not even have money to pay his fair to Port Harcourt. He pleaded repeatedly with his stepmother for help, but she would not budge. He then decided to trek, come what may, from Ubila Ututu to Port Harcourt. Providentially, at that critical moment of decision-making, two of his friends, Isaac Kalu and Kalu Uka, appeared from nowhere and offered him some monetary assistance. Isaac Kalu doled out 25 naira, and Kalu Uka complemented with 15 naira, making a total 40 naira. That was all Dan had in order to start the long journey to Port Harcourt.

Dan says of this marvel, “I will forever be grateful to these good friends of mine whom God used to rescue me…” Accepting to go to Port Harcourt at that time was one of the wisest steps that Dan took in his life, and that singular decision placed him on the trajectory to greatness. God used his uncle, Martin Ebi, to connect him to an endeavour that was to become for him a transformer from poverty to affluence. Uncle Martin was determined to stir up the latent entrepreneurial skills in Dan. So, on arrival in Port Harcourt, Martin put him into various trades, starting from the hawking of bar soaps, to the hustle and bustle of rice trade. At that time, Dan was slim and fragile. At all times, the rice business requires sufficient delivery of brainpower, as well as brawn and stamina. Dan had the brain, but one could not say the same about his having the kind of brawn and stamina needed to haul bags of rice through a bustling market. And so, before too long, things got to the brink, and Dan threw in the towel against the rice business, and informed Uncle Martin about his decision.

Not giving up, Martin went ahead and introduced him to John Okeke, his friend, who was into the business of “clearing and forwarding”. That one clicked, and Dan jumped for it. That was it. One thing led to another. Dan’s personal charisma and hard work stirred up admiration for him from many people, some very influential. Among such people who took liking for Dan were Mr. Solomon Azuma and Chief B. B. Umeh. God, once again favourably, flung those men at Dan. Solomon Azuma was the owner of a clearing and forwarding company, while Chief Umeh was a Senior Customs Officer. While Dan was still an apprentice under Solomon, Chief Umeh spotted him and intuitively adopted him as a son. Thus, Dan providentially fell into very good hands. Chief Umeh, in addition to maintaining Dan on a weekly stipend of 500 naira, for rendering no service, whatsoever, to him, also got him a job in a major shipping company, Panalpina. From there, Dan was propelled like a meteor into the world of clearing and forwarding business. Today, Dan Okeke is a proud owner of a very successful shipping company named, “Express Concerns”.

The following persons have also made, and are still making, impressionable impacts in his shipping business: Mr. Solomon Asaad of Saipem Contracting Company Limited, a foreign shipping company; and his very close friend and confidant, Chief Okafor Itam. There are many sides to Dan Okeke’s entrepreneurial acumen. Despite the fact that he has stirred up a lot of oceanic waves in the shipping business, Dan has also been very successful in the real estate business. In addition, Dan is into big-time importation and sale of motor vehicles. To underscore his business versatility, he has also taken a step to make a mark in the hospitality business with the completion of a hotel in Port Harcourt in 2016 under the Swiss Spirit Franchise. The hotel consists of two blocks with a total of 148 rooms, swimming pool, underground snooker bar, VIP Lounge, Italian Restaurant, 4 Conference rooms, one banquet hall, video conferencing facilities, regular restaurant, and bar to provide the guest with a lasting experience.

His Spirit Of Generosity
Dan is an extremely generous man. You may say he is generous to a fault. He extends his generosity even to his adversaries. Out of magnanimity, he always wanted to immortalise his late father. That led him into recovering a piece of land bought by his father, which was snatched by the original owners after the death of his father. In the process of recovering the piece of land, he was made to pay twice the going price of the land, and he willingly paid. In addition to paying for the land, Dan went ahead and sponsored the original landowner’s son, who wanted to register for the WAEC O-Level examinations. Dan stopped at nothing to acquire back the land, if only to use it and honour the man, his father, who influenced his appreciation of the value of determination and hard work. As the glorious face of God started shining on him, Dan built his first house. Surprisingly, the people he offered the house to live, for free, were children of his stepmother. That is the generosity of a man with a large heart.

Dan’s Educational background

Dan recently got an Msc from the UNIVERSITY OF SALFORD, MANCHESTER, UK-MSC

IN PROCUREMENT, LOGISTICS & SUPPLY CHAIN 2018,

UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE ANDTECHNOLOGY,

NKPOLU, PORT HARCOURT. RIVERS STATE. MBA IN MANAGEMENT 2008

UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE ANDTECHNOLOGY,

NKPOLU, PORT HARCOURT. RIVERS STATE. BSC IN BUSINESS ADMIN 1996-2001

Dan is an extremely generous man. You may say he is generous to a fault. He extends his generosity even to his adversaries. Out of magnanimity, he always wanted to immortalise his late father. That led him into recovering a piece of land bought by his father, which was snatched by the original owners after the death of his father. In the process of recovering the piece of land, he was made to pay twice the going price of the land, and he willingly paid. In addition to paying for the land, Dan went ahead and sponsored the original landowner’s son, who wanted to register for the WAEC O-Level examinations. Dan stopped at nothing to acquire back the land, if only to use it and honour the man, his father, who influenced his appreciation of the value of determination and hard work. As the glorious face of God started shining on him, Dan built his first house. Surprisingly, the people he offered the house to live, for free, were children of his stepmother. That is the generosity of a man with a large heart.

AWARDS:

Exemplary service award by Evangelical AME Zion Church, Obiene Ututu.

Good ambassador of Christ by Presbyterian Church, Obiene Ututu.

Achiever per Excellence by Law Students, Abia State University, Uturu

Ezinna by Inyom Ututu , Abia State.

Pillar of development award by Ututu Youth Forum in appreciation over the building / furnishing of Ututu / Ihechiowa Customary Court.

Ambassadorial award for excellence in service by Nzuko Ututu Community, Abuja

Man of virtue by Umuiwe Autonomous Community, Ututu

Award of excellence in recognition of selfless service to humanity and mankind by national youth council of Nigeria

Award of excellence as distinguished friend of Isu Community by Isu Progressive Union

Leadership excellence awards network for African leadership initiative (NALI) in collaboration with grass roots monitor.

MEMBERSHIP

Nigeria Shippers Council

Port Harcourt Chamber and Commerce, Agriculture, mines and Industries, Port Harcourt

Association of Nigeria Licensed Customs Agents

ACCOMPLISHIMENT

Without God we can do nothing and with the support of my lovely wife, I have been able to successfully achieve the following:

Purchase of motorcycles for six youths in my village – December 2007

Built two (2) classrooms blocks in Ubila / Amaetiti Primary School – 2009

Built a multi-purpose Hall for Ubila Ututu  – 2010

Drilling and installation of Borehole for Ubila Ututu – 2010

Purchase of Electric Poles and wire for Ubila Ututu with the support of my brother Rev. Father Jonathan – 2009

Purchase and installation of transformers that serves Ubila / Amaetiti – 2011

Built and furnished a Customary Court in Ututu/Ihechiowa which prompted two autonomous communities in Ututu to confer on me with Chieftaincy title. (Onwa-naetiri Oha 1 of Umuiwe automonous community and OmeraOha 1 Ezema autonomous community both in Ututu ) – 2012

Sponsoring of a Football Foundation in memory of my late Dad, Sir Anthony Okeke Okore, done every December and still ongoing. The Nineteen (19) villages in Ututu participate in the competition which purpose is to bring about unity and to remind us that we are one Ututu – 2010 till date

Helping the less privileged and promoting education in Ututu

Built and furnished Ututu Unity /Library Centre – 2016.

Dan is happily married to his heartthrob, Mrs. Agnes Okeke. They are both from the same village, Ubila Ututu. They have been married since 20th of April 2000, and have been blessed with beautiful children, 2 boys and 3 girls.

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1 Comment
  1. […] After series of evaluation and research, Abia Facts Newspaper Editorial Board and AFN Award Committee have nominated Chief Daniel Chimezie Okeke as ABIA FACTS NEWSPAPER PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR 2018. Chief Daniel is a successful Abia State businessman, who started in the shipping industry and has expanded to other business areas including hospitality industry under the Swiss Spirit Franchise. He is a politically aware individual with his focus mainly on good governance and dividends of democracy for the people of Abia State and Nigerians in general. READ HIS FULL PROFILE; Daniel Chimezie Okeke, was born in Ubila Ututu, which is part of the present-day Arochukwu Local Government Area of Abia State, Nigeria. I would like to quote him as he explicitly describes the circumstances of his birth and childhood. “I was not fortunate enough to grow up under the nurture and warmth of my mother. Before I could mutter ‘Mama’ like other infants, the cold hand of death struck and snatched Mama away from mother earth. And thus, was started for me, a tortuous beginning that took Providence not much to put right.” Only a relatively small number of people, worldwide, can make this kind of statement about the circumstances of their birth. Most citizens of the world are normally nurtured to maturity by their biological parents. Chief Daniel Chimezie OkekeDan started school in Ubila-Amaetiti Primary School, the same school where his father was a teacher. When he graduated from primary school, he was enrolled in Umunnato Secondary Technical College, Ututu. Dan’s father was poised to play that human ladder with which Dan was to climb to greatness. Dan describes it thus: “Father wanted me to take after him. He wanted me to be great and attain a height no one else in the family had ever ventured… Father wanted to give me the best of everything. Most especially he wanted me to be well educated.” But those lofty plans were cut short by the sudden and most unexpected death of his father, at a time when Dan had just been promoted to Class 2 in the secondary school. The death of his father at that time appeared like the sunset of Dan’s life. But, it was not to be, for God had positioned some angels on his path to lift him up to his destined height. It can be said that the first human angel, as it were, in whose hands Dan began his journey of survival was his grandmother. If grandmother did not invoke the rare and unusual initiative of inviting younger women to breastfeed Dan, when his mother died, as he was only seven months old, how could he have lived? Whatever Dan has grown to become today was made possible because he lived through those unsure early days of his life. Thanks to grandmother. Worthy of mention also are Mr. G. O. K. Aluoko, and Miss Grace Kalu (teachers in Umunnato Secondary Technical College) as well as Rev. Benard Ubuo (Dan’s pastor at that time). These people whom God called at that point in time, answered the call, and voluntarily contributed, out of their meagre resources, to ensure that Dan’s school fees were paid. Rev. Ubuo and his wife, in addition, took Dan in, fed him and gave him a room in their residence. Among the people Dan was supposed to grow up under their care was his stepmother. Dan writes in the book that rather than receives love and care from his stepmother, he constantly received hatred, envy, maltreatment, neglect and open antagonism. Dan claims that the malice got to a crescendo when his father died in an excruciating circumstance. Dan was only thirteen years of age when his father died. It was as if Dan had lost all he lived for. There were no consolations, and no respite. People around him replaced Hope with hostilities and false promises. The first happening that can be called a turning point in Dan’s life was when Uncle Martin Ebi, his mother’s younger brother, invited him to leave the village and come to Port Harcourt. At that point Dan did not even have money to pay his fair to Port Harcourt. He pleaded repeatedly with his stepmother for help, but she would not budge. He then decided to trek, come what may, from Ubila Ututu to Port Harcourt. Providentially, at that critical moment of decision-making, two of his friends, Isaac Kalu and Kalu Uka, appeared from nowhere and offered him some monetary assistance. Isaac Kalu doled out 25 naira, and Kalu Uka complemented with 15 naira, making a total 40 naira. That was all Dan had in order to start the long journey to Port Harcourt. Dan says of this marvel, “I will forever be grateful to these good friends of mine whom God used to rescue me…” Accepting to go to Port Harcourt at that time was one of the wisest steps that Dan took in his life, and that singular decision placed him on the trajectory to greatness. God used his uncle, Martin Ebi, to connect him to an endeavour that was to become for him a transformer from poverty to affluence. Uncle Martin was determined to stir up the latent entrepreneurial skills in Dan. So, on arrival in Port Harcourt, Martin put him into various trades, starting from the hawking of bar soaps, to the hustle and bustle of rice trade. At that time, Dan was slim and fragile. At all times, the rice business requires sufficient delivery of brainpower, as well as brawn and stamina. Dan had the brain, but one could not say the same about his having the kind of brawn and stamina needed to haul bags of rice through a bustling market. And so, before too long, things got to the brink, and Dan threw in the towel against the rice business, and informed Uncle Martin about his decision. Not giving up, Martin went ahead and introduced him to John Okeke, his friend, who was into the business of “clearing and forwarding”. That one clicked, and Dan jumped for it. That was it. One thing led to another. Dan’s personal charisma and hard work stirred up admiration for him from many people, some very influential. Among such people who took liking for Dan were Mr. Solomon Azuma and Chief B. B. Umeh. God, once again favourably, flung those men at Dan. Solomon Azuma was the owner of a clearing and forwarding company, while Chief Umeh was a Senior Customs Officer. While Dan was still an apprentice under Solomon, Chief Umeh spotted him and intuitively adopted him as a son. Thus, Dan providentially fell into very good hands. Chief Umeh, in addition to maintaining Dan on a weekly stipend of 500 naira, for rendering no service, whatsoever, to him, also got him a job in a major shipping company, Panalpina. From there, Dan was propelled like a meteor into the world of clearing and forwarding business. Today, Dan Okeke is a proud owner of a very successful shipping company named, “Express Concerns”. The following persons have also made, and are still making, impressionable impacts in his shipping business: Mr. Solomon Asaad of Saipem Contracting Company Limited, a foreign shipping company; and his very close friend and confidant, Chief Okafor Itam. There are many sides to Dan Okeke’s entrepreneurial acumen. Despite the fact that he has stirred up a lot of oceanic waves in the shipping business, Dan has also been very successful in the real estate business. In addition, Dan is into big-time importation and sale of motor vehicles. To underscore his business versatility, he has also taken a step to make a mark in the hospitality business with the completion of a hotel in Port Harcourt in 2016 under the Swiss Spirit Franchise. The hotel consists of two blocks with a total of 148 rooms, swimming pool, underground snooker bar, VIP Lounge, Italian Restaurant, 4 Conference rooms, one banquet hall, video conferencing facilities, regular restaurant, and bar to provide the guest with a lasting experience. His Spirit Of Generosity Dan is an extremely generous man. You may say he is generous to a fault. He extends his generosity even to his adversaries. Out of magnanimity, he always wanted to immortalise his late father. That led him into recovering a piece of land bought by his father, which was snatched by the original owners after the death of his father. In the process of recovering the piece of land, he was made to pay twice the going price of the land, and he willingly paid. In addition to paying for the land, Dan went ahead and sponsored the original landowner’s son, who wanted to register for the WAEC O-Level examinations. Dan stopped at nothing to acquire back the land, if only to use it and honour the man, his father, who influenced his appreciation of the value of determination and hard work. As the glorious face of God started shining on him, Dan built his first house. Surprisingly, the people he offered the house to live, for free, were children of his stepmother. That is the generosity of a man with a large heart. Dan’s Educational background Dan recently got an Msc from the UNIVERSITY OF SALFORD, MANCHESTER, UK-MSC IN PROCUREMENT, LOGISTICS & SUPPLY CHAIN 2018, UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE ANDTECHNOLOGY, NKPOLU, PORT HARCOURT. RIVERS STATE. MBA IN MANAGEMENT 2008 UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE ANDTECHNOLOGY, NKPOLU, PORT HARCOURT. RIVERS STATE. BSC IN BUSINESS ADMIN 1996-2001 Dan is an extremely generous man. You may say he is generous to a fault. He extends his generosity even to his adversaries. Out of magnanimity, he always wanted to immortalise his late father. That led him into recovering a piece of land bought by his father, which was snatched by the original owners after the death of his father. In the process of recovering the piece of land, he was made to pay twice the going price of the land, and he willingly paid. In addition to paying for the land, Dan went ahead and sponsored the original landowner’s son, who wanted to register for the WAEC O-Level examinations. Dan stopped at nothing to acquire back the land, if only to use it and honour the man, his father, who influenced his appreciation of the value of determination and hard work. As the glorious face of God started shining on him, Dan built his first house. Surprisingly, the people he offered the house to live, for free, were children of his stepmother. That is the generosity of a man with a large heart. AWARDS: Exemplary service award by Evangelical AME Zion Church, Obiene Ututu. Good ambassador of Christ by Presbyterian Church, Obiene Ututu. Achiever per Excellence by Law Students, Abia State University, Uturu Ezinna by Inyom Ututu , Abia State. Pillar of development award by Ututu Youth Forum in appreciation over the building / furnishing of Ututu / Ihechiowa Customary Court. Ambassadorial award for excellence in service by Nzuko Ututu Community, Abuja Man of virtue by Umuiwe Autonomous Community, Ututu Award of excellence in recognition of selfless service to humanity and mankind by national youth council of Nigeria Award of excellence as distinguished friend of Isu Community by Isu Progressive Union Leadership excellence awards network for African leadership initiative (NALI) in collaboration with grass roots monitor. MEMBERSHIP Nigeria Shippers Council Port Harcourt Chamber and Commerce, Agriculture, mines and Industries, Port Harcourt Association of Nigeria Licensed Customs Agents ACCOMPLISHIMENT Without God we can do nothing and with the support of my lovely wife, I have been able to successfully achieve the following: Purchase of motorcycles for six youths in my village – December 2007 Built two (2) classrooms blocks in Ubila / Amaetiti Primary School – 2009 Built a multi-purpose Hall for Ubila Ututu  – 2010 Drilling and installation of Borehole for Ubila Ututu – 2010 Purchase of Electric Poles and wire for Ubila Ututu with the support of my brother Rev. Father Jonathan – 2009 Purchase and installation of transformers that serves Ubila / Amaetiti – 2011 Built and furnished a Customary Court in Ututu/Ihechiowa which prompted two autonomous communities in Ututu to confer on me with Chieftaincy title. (Onwa-naetiri Oha 1 of Umuiwe automonous community and OmeraOha 1 Ezema autonomous community both in Ututu ) – 2012 Sponsoring of a Football Foundation in memory of my late Dad, Sir Anthony Okeke Okore, done every December and still ongoing. The Nineteen (19) villages in Ututu participate in the competition which purpose is to bring about unity and to remind us that we are one Ututu – 2010 till date Helping the less privileged and promoting education in Ututu Built and furnished Ututu Unity /Library Centre – 2016. Dan is happily married to his heartthrob, Mrs. Agnes Okeke. They are both from the same village, Ubila Ututu. They have been married since 20th of April 2000, and have been blessed with beautiful children, 2 boys and 3 girls. The post AFN AWARD: POPULAR ABIA STATE BUSINESS GURU, DAN OKEKE EMERGES AFN PERSONALITY OF YEAR 2018  appeared first on ABIA FACTS NEWS. Read The Full Article […]

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