By Uchendu Precious Onuoha (Special Correspondent Spain).
Bianca Ojukwu Wins Most Outstanding African Ambassador Award.
Once a winner always a winner, and a star cannot be shielded from its lights. Ambassador Bianca Olivia Odumegwu Ojukwu is like the Northern star whose light remains constant from her position in the firmament. Bianca’s star and winning streaks continues to follow her wherever she goes. Initially her appointment as a non-career Diplomat was received with mixed feelings in some certain quarters. According to Shakespeare, “The fault, dear Brutus is not in our stars, But in ourselves, that we are underlings.”
Today, the stone which the builders rejected has become the chief corner stone of the house. Bianca Ojukwu like a Trojan went to Spain, saw and conquered. Ambassador Bianca Ojukwu is a rare bird, bestowed with beauty, intelligence and wisdom. And her accomplishments have proved that one does not need to acquire all the qualifications in the world before you become a successful and good leader.
On October 17, 2014, she was honored with the prestigious award of, African Most Outstanding Ambassador in Diaspora 2014 in Netherlands by the Voice of Achievers. The Voice Magazine Annual Award Ceremony is one of the most prestigious and highly rated awards in Europe used to recognize and honor African Achievers and Friends of Africa who have distinguished and proven themselves in their areas of calling for the advancement of their countries, Africa and humanity at large.
This year’s event which was held at HOTEL ALMERE, a five star hotel in the city of Almere in Netherlands was used to give various Awards to deserving Africans and Nigerians. Among them were, Ambassador Bianca Ojukwu, Chief Peter Obi, former Executive Governor of Anambra state who received award as Personality of the year 2014, Bishop Mathew Kukah, Bishop of Sokoto Diocese Nigeria, Dr. Abdullahi Dikko, the Comptroller General of Customs in Nigeria, Chief Joop Berkhout, and Chairman/CEO. Spectrum Books, among others. Among former recipients of the Award before include; Olusegun Obasanjo, Former President of Nigeria, Professor Wole Soyinka, Nobel Laureate, Sierra Leone President Ernest Bai Koroma, Nwanne Campo among others.
Ambassador Bianca Ojukwu whose presence dominates and arrests her environment wherever she enters, was the cynosure of all eyes, as all guests were falling heads over heels to catch a glimpse of her and have snap shots. The award was presented to her by her counterpart, the Nigerian Ambassador to the Netherlands, Dr. N.N.Akanbi.
Speaking during the occasion, Bianca thanked the organizers of the event and those who recommended her for the award. She dedicated the award to the staff of the Nigerian Embassy Spain whom she said that without their collaboration and support she may not have attained to that height. She also thanked the Federation of Nigerian Community Spain (FNCS) and all Nigerian citizens in Spain for their support.
Accompanying her to receive the award was what could be described as the Operation Swift crack squad of the Embassy whom she humorously name tagged. Among them were, The Head of Chancery, Safiu Olukayode Olaniyan, she described as, the Pillar of chancery and facilitator of the renovation of the Embassy and Chancery buildings. Head of Consul L.D.G. Boko (absent for ill-health). Consul Nze Nnamdi, Coordinator and Investigator of the Embassy’s Rescue Operations,
Others were, Joshua Luka (Accountant), tagged as CBN of the Embassy, Adekemu Ajayi, the Mother of Rescued Nigerian Children, a known face at the Airport and could be mistaken as a child trafficker, as she is always carrying two or three Nigerian siblings rescued from adoption while accompanying them to Nigeria to their families. Others include, Ruth Dauda who is on attachment and Wendy Van Der Veen, a Dutch woman and Co -Founder of the Black and White Association, and a good friend of the Embassy.
Answering questions from Daily Independent Foreign Correspondent in Spain, Uchendu Precious who was at the event, on how she feels and what the Award means to her?
Ambassador Bianca, said that she feels happy and encouraged as this goes a long way to show that her pursuit and implementation of the Citizens diplomacy as was directed as a priority area of attention to all missions by the President while commissioning them as Ambassadors are yielding fruits.
She stated that the Nigerian Embassy will continue to protect the rights and welfare of all Nigerian citizens in Spain and in Diaspora. She asserted that the Nigeria Embassy Spain is of the people, by the people and for the people. And that the Nigerian Embassy remains a Sanctuary for all Nigerian citizens in Spain. And she used the occasion to commend the Government for the efforts they made to combat and control Ebola in Nigeria. And called on all Nigerians to join hands with the Government to make Nigeria great and a better country for all.