The Olu of Warri, Atuwatse 111 Utieyinoritsetsola Emiko was at the weekend declared Man of the Year by the foremost online regional media outfit, Irohinoodua.
In a statement released by its Editorial Board, the Olu of Warri was selected as the 2021 Man of the Year by the media outfit after intensive debate which led to his choice from a list of 25 prominent people across Nigeria.
The online media also declared Dr Adeniran Ariyo as the Yoruba Man of the Year. Dr Ariyo is a medical practitioner based in the United States. He is one of the world renown cardiologist with passion for humanity in the area of philanthropy.
His support for the upliftment of his people and the transformation of his homeland drew jealousy and public petitions driven by ethnic paranoid, a battle he won with the support of many Yoruba people all over the world.
The statement signed by the Managing Editor, Mr Taiwo Adeleye a former correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria, (NAN) and former lecturer at the International Journalism Centre, (IJC) said the Olu of Warri was selected for his electrifying emergence as a unifying factor among indigenous peoples of the Niger Delta opening up one of the greatest prospects of peace building and conflict prevention in recent history.
He is young and vibrant. His emergence in August 2021 saw a renewed vigor to bring the people of Warri Kingdom together and to united the different ethnic groups in his domain and beyond. He has set up an empowerment programme with beneficiaries spanning the ethnic divides. His lordship has seen a new realm where the addressing the needs of the poor is a directive royal principle. This he has demonstrated with a lot of committed resources without seeking publicity or public attention but to the delight of millions of people in his domain.
Irohinoodua said the Olu has rejoined the almost broken cord between the Yoruba people and Warri, two great civilisations that has been nurtured for centuries and sustained during the era of the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo
The management said the Olu of Warri has brought hope to a despairing youth population while his vision is strikingly uncommon evident in his desire to use the agelong traditional stool to transform the social and economic frontiers of his people.
‘His direct link with improving the economic situation of youths in the Niger Delta through economic empowerment has given the traditional stool another grandeur which stamps the fact that traditional institutions are potentially great partners in the transformation of Nigeria.
‘The Olu of Warri fought a consistent battle with his people on his side.
He won a protracted contest but demonstrate a rare spirit of magnanimity in victory. One of the most striking phenomenon in his desire to unite his people, open up fresh vistas in ethnic relations in the Niger Delta and broadened the aspirations for brotherhood among the people of Warri and the Niger Delta through his demonstrated leadership acumen.”
Dr. Adeniran Ariyo, MD is a Cardiology Specialist in Dallas, TX with over 34 years of experience in the medical field. Dr. Ariyo has more experience with Adult Congenital Heart Conditions than other specialists in his area. He graduated from University of Ibadan medical school in 1988. He is affiliated with Baylor Scott And White Medical Center Sunnyvale.
Past winners of the Irohinoodua Man of the Year included Prof Wole Soyinka, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, the late Pastor TB Joshua and Prof Banji Akintoye who won the award in 2020