..As Jesus Evangelical Assembly hosted the awards winning engineer at its empowerment summit
By Renn Offor
Entrepreneurship, according economic and development experts, is the basis for transforming third world countries and developing economies into economic superpowers. This position was brought to the fore again as the multiple award winning Engineer, Kolawole Adeniji, the Managing Director/Chief Executive of Niji Group, has said that empowering youths through agriculture and agribusiness will create a lot of employment in Nigeria while it will equally lift Nigeria both economically and in Africa.
Mr. Adeniji said this last Sunday while delivering a lecture that explored the need to create employment for our teeming youths through empowering them in agriculture and through agribusinesses. The leadership of the Jesus Evangelical Assembly, through its Economic Empowerment department hosted him to its annual empowerment summit, which held within the Church’s complex at Ikeja, Lagos State. The General Overseer of the Church, Reverend David Esosa Ize-Iyamu, declaring the lecture open acknowledged the great work the economic empowerment department have been doing over the years. He went on to acknowledge the honour bestowed on the Church by the guest speaker to be part of the great work.
The Economic Empowerment Summit, an economic and financial empowerment scheme of the Church which has been operational in the Church since inception; and the testimonies from men and women whose lives have been transformed through the scheme are proves of the divine backing the scheme has enjoyed since its inception. The President of the department, Mrs. Adenike Obayemi, during interaction said that the ‘Economic Empowerment Department was set up by Rev. Esosa, and has its main goal to create opportunities for members of the Church to create and multiply wealth. It is a department that is powered by Esosa Foundation, set up by the pastor’. Esosa Foundation is a philanthropic foundation intended to empower people financially and economically.
Delivering the lecture, the engineer-turned-farmer, who prefers to be called a farmer rather than an engineer, went down memory lane as he inspired the audience with his story of travail and his passion for fixing and fabricating mechanical appliances which helped to ease productions for various industries. ‘I have a passion to fix mechanical appliances. I walked miles and miles just following my passion. I did all that because I derived a deep joy, satisfaction and fulfillment when I see that I’ve done something that solved problems for people and for creating value. I was never driven for the money’. Mr. Adeniji went on to share how his fabrication outfit grew, through prudent and studious approach to financial management and investment; and today, he has diversified into farming, food processing and hospitality businesses.
He equally shared his vision of having the largest farm in Africa; and as at the moment his farm boasts of ‘over 3000 acres of cassava plantation, which is the largest in Africa now’. The multiple awards winning engineer challenged the audience that in this era of diversification, that Nigerians should look towards investing in agriculture and agribusiness as one of the most viable tool that would solve the unemployment dilemma in the country, while at the same time he encouraged specializations among farmers in the farming processes. Mr. Kolawole Adeniji is a trained Mechanical engineering Technologist with over 25 years’ experience, working on diverse agro-allied projects across Nigeria and Africa. He is a prominent stakeholder in the agro-allied machinery and equipment fabrication in Nigeria and he holds enviable positions in Cassava Value Chain businesses in Africa.
He is the founder and Chairman of Niji Group, comprising four other subsidiaries namely Niji Lukas Nigeria Limited, Niji farms and allied Services Limited, Niji Foods Nigeria Limited, Niji Institute of Sustainable Agriculture and Ripples Hotel and Nite Club in Nigeria; operating in agricultural machineries fabrications, crops and livestock production, food processing, centre for learning profitable agriculture and hoteling/tourism business sectors. He has won several awards including Century International Quality Era Award (Gold Category), Geneva, Switzerland in 2015. Kolawole Adeniji has an insatiable passion for quality and excellence, and he has partnerships all over the world.