Kwara State Governor, Abdulfattah Ahmed and Ebola doctor, Stella Ameyo Adadevoh, were on Friday announced as winners of the 2014 edition of National Infinity Magazine’s Nigerian of the Year award.
According to a release signed by Olajide Ige, Editor-In-Chief of the magazine, Abdulfattah Ahmed, the governor of Kwara State was shortlisted for his contributions to good governance and the health sector especially through the Kwara State Community Health Insurance Scheme that attracted global honours for the Kwara State in Paris last year.
The magazine described Ahmed “as barrier breaker, who on assumption of Office as executive governor in 2011, met a record many considered unmatchable but as he is about completing a remarkable first term in office, he has broken barriers and has surpassed previous administrations in the state.”
“In four years, he has worked tirelessly to fulfill his electoral pledge to sustain continuity and chart new pathways to growth. He has broken the jinx of abandoned projects and demonstrated the tangible benefits of continuity.”
In short listing Adadevoh, the woman who prevented a national calamity for the 2014 honour, the magazine commended her courage and patriotism that led to curbing a wider spread of the Ebola virus in Nigeria by placing the patient, Patrick Sawyer, in zero quarantine despite pressures from the Liberian Government and the ECOWAS to release the patient to attend a conference in Calabar. On 4 August 2014, it was confirmed that she tested positive for the Ebola virus strain and was being treated. She died on Tuesday, 19th August 2014.
The high numbers of votes she the woman then referred to as Ebola doctor got during the online voting was an indication that Nigerians love and adore their heroes. She poled 52 votes representing 31.9 percent of the 173 people that voted online.
She was one vote behind Alh. Abdulfattah Ahmed’s 53 votes 31.52%, the governor of Kwara State who won the online voting while she led Ahmed by the same margin in the in-house voting by members of the Editorial Board and select journalists thereby resulting in a tie breaker.
Sprint star and multiple Commonwhealth gold medalist, Blessing Okagbare, came third with 37 votes (22.7%) of the total votes cast. She too will be honoured alongside the Kwara State governor and Stella Adadevoh (post humous) during the forthcoming Babatunde Jose lecture on Media and the Society at a date to be announced later by the organisers. Other nominees are Imo State governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha and Minister for Agriculture and rural development, Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina who came 4th and 5th respectively.