Prof. PAT UTOMI* to be honoured with other Top Nigerian Leaders as one of the *PATRONs* of Arise O Nigeria at the 3rd Annual *Arise O Nigeria Leadership Symposium & PAN Nigerian Humanitarian Awards.*
Date: Sat 27th of October, 2018.
Venue: National Women Development Centre opposite CBN, Abuja.
*PROFESSOR PATRICK OKEDINACHI UTOMI* – *”A LIVING ICON”*
Professor Patrick Okedinachi Utomi is a Professor of Political Economy and Management Expert. He was born in Kaduna on February 6, 1956 to the family of Mr. Golden and Agatha Utomi of Ibusa (Igbuzo) in present-day Oshimili North Local Government Area of Delta State. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Management Consultants of Nigeria and a former Presidential candidate in Nigeria, with a passion and zeal for the dignity of the human person and a knack for enterprise. He founded the Centre for Value in Leadership (CVL) with a vision to instill the right Leadership Values on people and to prepare them for Leadership positions.
Professor Utomi began his primary education at St. Thomas Primary School, Kano (1960 – 1962) and completed it at Our Lady of Fatima, Gusau (1962- 1966). He got admitted to the famous Christ the King College, Onitsha due to the Nigerian Civil war that forced his family to relocate to Asaba from the Northern part of Nigeria. Again, his studies were disrupted by the war because Onitsha was a theatre of battle. His father, who knew the importance of education sought and got admission for him at Loyola College, Ibadan away from the din of guns and bombs. He finished his secondary education from Loyola College, Ibadan in 1971 at the age of 15 in flying colours, but could not gain admission to the University immediately because he was less than 17 years which was the required minimum age then. However, because Pat Utomi is very industrious and hates idleness, he enrolled at the Federal College of Arts and Science, Yaba, Lagos, but his mind was elsewhere. He wanted to follow the career path of his bosom friend, Olumide Lawal, who was two years older than him but who upon graduation from secondary education went straight to a Florida Flying School in the U.S.A, and returned after a 10 month stint as a licensed pilot with a flashy Chevrolet Camaro. But his father, who perhaps saw the future, patiently urged him to take the University entrance examination which he did. He got admission into the University of Nigeria, Nsukka in 1973 to study Mass Communication. Patrick Utomi graduated from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka in 1977 at the age of 21.
As a young man at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Pat Utomi was a Student Activist/Leader. He was nominated and got elected as the Director of Socials. As Director of Socials, he organized various events for the students and invited notable speakers to teach and inspire them to take responsibility for their actions, and to be good leaders at whatever positions they occupy. The hallmark of his achievements as the Director of Socials was his unparalleled success with the invitation of the then Federal Commissioner for Foreign Affairs, Col. Joe Garba, to speak to the students on “Genuine Facts on Nigeria Foreign Policy”, and February 19, 1976 was chosen for the event.
Meanwhile, some renegades in the Armed Forces who desired a violent regime change struck on February 13, 1976, a week to the planned event, and assassinated Gen. Murtala Muhammed who was then Head of State. This coup-de-tat was foiled, but it was uncertain if the illustrious Foreign Affairs Commissioner would make the invitation. But to the utter surprise of everyone, he did come, including the Vice-Chancellor who was still at home as at the time the Foreign Affairs Commissioner (Col. Joe Garba) was already at Enugu Airport, en-route Nsukka. The presence and the speech of the Federal Foreign Affairs Commissioner at the event raised Pat Utomi’s profile within and outside the University.
Upon graduation, Prof. Pat Utomi was posted under the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme to the NYSC Secretariat, but he was sooner bored as he was not fully engaged. He appealed for a change of posting and was re-assigned to Newbreed Magazine published by Mr. Chris Okolie.
Now in his natural habitation (Mass Communication) at Newbreed Magazine, he wrote a lot of leading articles as well as cover stories for the magazine. Pat Utomi was attached to the then seat of the Federal Government of Nigeria at Dodan Barracks. Towards the end of his service year, Prof. Pat Utomi contributed to a “controversial” publication entitled “The Drift Begins.”
It was in his quest for further knowledge that he got enrolled at Indiana University Bloomington, Indiana, U.S.A. for a Masters in Journalism, with a Minor in Business. He later enrolled for a joint PhD programme which he completed at the age of 26, fully prepared to contribute to the sustainable development of his motherland.
Within a few months of his return to Nigeria from Indiana, United States, Pat Utomi got enlisted by the former Vice-President, Arc. Alex Ekwueme, to provide consultancy assistance on public policy papers. He featured eloquently on “Verdict 83”, a programme on the Nigeria general election of 1983. Soon after the election, he was appointed Special Assistant (SA) by former President Shehu Shagari on Political Affairs, a position he lost following the military intervention of December 1983, which truncated the Second Republic.
Following the end of the Second Republic, Professor Pat Utomi returned to private business and became Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Utomapp Holdings Limited, and later took up the position of Assistant General Manager (AGM) Corporate Affairs at Volkswagen of Nigeria Limited (VWN), Lagos in 1983 at the age of 27. Three years into his tenure, and after a highly competitive interview, he was appointed the Deputy Managing Director of Volkswagen of Nigeria at the age of 30; even though he was actually far lower in age than the proposed age bracket of 35-40 preferred for the position. He remained the Deputy Managing Director, DMD, of Volkswagen of Nigeria until 1993 when the parent company of Volkswagen in Germany, who were the majority shareholders, took a corporate decision to pull out of Nigeria.
At Indiana University, Professor Pat Utomi was appointed Professor of the Social and Political Economy Environment of Business and Pioneer Entrepreneurship. Also, he was scholar-in-residence, America University, Washington DC, USA, 1996 and Research Associate, the Harvard Business School, Beston, Massachusetts, USA. He also belongs to many professional bodies. He is a member, Nigerian Institute of Public Relations, NIPR, Institute of Directors IOD, Nigeria Economic Summit Group and Nigeria Economic Society. Also, he has been involved in several humanitarian and social ventures. He supports widows through his “Centre for Widows” organization that empowers them or their children to acquire skills for meaningful living. Professor Pat Utomi is an advocate for the re-orientation of our value system which he strongly believes is the bane of our under-development as a nation. He promotes this vision through his Centre for Values in Leadership Additionally; he supports several NGOs some of which he sits on their boards as Chairman or Trustee.
Of particular interest is his support for Opus Dei, an initiative for a Business School. Opus Dei is a Catholic Organization that means “the work of God”, but whose work is not restricted to Catholics. It encourages all Christians of all social classes to bring honour to their professional and family lives, and play an active role in the shaping of society. The result was the founding in 1991 of the Centre for Research and Communications, a not-for-profit organization. It was a Management Development institution that offered non-degree professional development programmes to practicing managers. This institution was later renamed the Lagos Business School (LBS), and has now metamorphosed into Pan-Atlantic University, a degree awarding University in Nigeria.
Professor Pat. Utomi has coordinated the establishment of several civil society groups on good governance and accountability such as Transparency in Nigeria, the Concerned Professionals, the Restoration Group and many more. In the business environment, Pat Utomi has done extremely well and succeeded in all his endeavours. He was the Vice-chairman, Platinum-Habib Bank (Bank PHB); and also a columnist, and Chairman, Business Day Media Limited. He is the creator of “Patito’s Gang”, a television talk show that discusses the affairs of Nigeria. He has served on some apex private sector associations including the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), the National Council of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria. He is also the chairman of Poise Nigeria Limited, and was of the Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA).
More recently, he is Chairman, Smart Cities Lagos, in association with Smart Cities Dubai, that is working on plans to build a mega-city development in Lagos State. He is also the Chairman, Integrated Produce City, an agricultural concern in Edo State.
On the international scene, Prof. Pat Utomi is very active. He speaks at various fora, especially on the subjects of growth economics, comparative development, leadership, oil and China’s economic surge and its growing influence in Africa.
He has collaborated frequently with the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington D.C., which is a bipartisan, non-profit policy research organization dedicated to providing strategic insights and policy solutions to help decision makers chart a course toward a better world; and Chatham House, the Royal Institute of International Affairs, which is an independent policy institute based in London, UK with a mission to help build a sustainably secure, prosperous and just world.
Also, he has written commissioned papers for the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID), including collaboration with colleagues from Oxford University on the Political Economy of growth in Nigeria (2006).
It is said, “A strongman stands for himself, but a stronger man stands for others.” Pat Utomi’s ideology and philosophy is to empower the citizenry, particularly youths, through re-orientation that would bring about a change of our value systems, creation of wealth through ‘critical and creative thinking’ in a nation where everyone is contributing to its sustainable growth and development through the right leadership. To this end, being one that wants to pave the way for Nigerians, and driven by the urge to serve to the glory of God and the well-being of mankind, he contested the Presidential election in 2011 in Nigeria. While campaigning for the presidential election, he travelled widely around the country and was able to identify with the ordinary people’s plight.
Professor Pat Utomi has received numerous awards, and amongst them are the following:
• Recognized as a Lagos ICON during Lagos@50 celebrations (2017);
• Nominated and voted by the public as one of Nigeria’s top ten Living Legends in the Vanguard/Silverbird Television Awards;
• Named Societal Role Model in pioneer awards by the Nigerian Tribune in 2011;
• Great Nigeria Lives of the 20th Century;
• Who is who in Africa;
• Vanguard Newspaper Nominated Entrepreneur of the year 1999;
• Loyola Old Boys Association National Merit Award Winner 1998;
• Voted by several chapters of the Jaycees as ‘Young person of the year’ in 1987;
• Honoured with Distinguished Alumnus Award and Alumni Ambassador by the Senate of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, and lots more.
One of the ways to know the philosophy, temperament, disposition, ideology of someone is by reading his books. Professor Pat Utomi is an author and a prolific writer who takes his time to knit what is on his mind on paper. Some of his books and select publications are:
(1) Utomi P.: Nigeria as an Economic Power House – Can it be Achieved? in Robert P. Rothberg (ed) Crafting the New Nigeria – confronting the challenges, Lynne Rienner Publishers Boulder Co. 2004 Pg 125-138.
(2) Utomi P.: Nigeria “Changes as Prospects” in the Africa competitiveness Report (ed) Jeffrey Sachs, World Economic Forum (WEF), 2000.
(3) Utomi P.: Performance under constraints. The Nigeria Press Under Military Rule. Gazette Vol. 28 1982.
(4) Utomi P.: Historical – Philosophical Foundations of Government Ownership of Newspaper in Nigeria. Gazette Vol. no1 1981.
(5) Utomi P.: Values and Economic Stagnation in Africa. A Paradox of Poverty in Nigeria. The International Journal of African Studies Vol. 3.2 Spring 2004.
(6) Utomi P.: Managing Uncertainty Competition and strategy in Emerging Economies. Ibadan Spectrum Books 1998.
(7) Utomi P.; Critical perspectives in Political Economy and Management. Ibadan Spectrum Books 2000.
(8) Utomi P.: To Serve is to Live. Ibadan Spectrum Books 1999.
(9) Utomi P.: Why Nations are Poor. Lagos Business Day Books 2008.
(10) Utomi P.: Business Angel as a Missionary, London, Makeway Press. 2010.
(11) Utomi P.: Conscience – Opinions in the Struggle for Nation Building. Lagos Patike Book 1999.
(12) Utomi P.: Perspectives: Further Thoughts in the Quest for National Rebirth. Patike Books. 2000
(13) Edited Volumes of Interviews with Pat Utomi – Golden Thoughts compiled by Godfrey Obioma Intec Press 2004.
(14) “In the words of Pat Utomi”, edited by Uju Onyecheve, Lagos Benson Edwards Publications 2003.
(15) Pat Utomi: A purpose-driven life: Interviews of Pat Utomi by Godfrey Obioma.
(16) The Duty to Lead: An article by Pat Utomi.
In summary, Prof. Pat Utomi is a lover of humanity, a teacher and business man, and most importantly a family man who believes passionately in Nigeria …. For more info, visit www.ariseonigeria.com.ng/sdg-