Op-Ed: Would the World Be Better Off Without Sheriff Shagaya? - 9japarrot


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Saturday 24 June 2023

Op-Ed: Would the World Be Better Off Without Sheriff Shagaya?

By Basheer Luqman Olarewaju

“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” – Winston Churchill

As we know, the purpose of philanthropy is to serve others. As defined by the seminal book Understanding Philanthropy, Robert Payton and Michael Moody define philanthropy as “voluntary action for the public good.” Payton and Moody spend significant time defining “the public good” to make it clear that this definition of philanthropy does not include personal gain or even familial benefit.

We must preserve the purpose of philanthropy – to create public good rather than personal gain. When personal gain is the donor’s motivation, that is when philanthropy loses its purpose and can cause harm. While the purpose of philanthropy is not to benefit one’s self, there is no question that giving has indirect and incredible benefits to the generous.

In a most relevant tête-à-tête engagement with the Chairman, Salman Shagaya Foundation, Alhaji Sheriff Shagaya, he reiterated his commitment and determination towards ensuring his legacies would outlive himself, “It’s not who we are deep down, but our actions that define us”, he added.

He is consummate, entrepreneur, industrious and above all faithful. There is no single soul connected to Alhaji Sheriff that has not benefitted from his goodwill gesture and wealth, either directly or indirectly, far and near, Nigerians and non-Nigerians alike. He is that sort of a generous man. His contribution to education, health, religion, innovation and human development cannot be overstated.

His charity works, Alhaji Sheriff Shagaya has made an immense financial contribution in his effort to help close and long-distance families, friends, relatives, associates, admirers and neighbours.

He is hugely involved in community work such as building laboratories for schools, libraries and even health facilities etc.  And he is doing it with humility and diligence. Added to that is his steadfastness and kindness to everyone around him.

It has ever been a tradition that every 3 month, hundreds of people would gather to receive charitable donation and empowerment as a way of giving out to the poor, indigents and the needy.

I could confirm his humbleness without an iota of doubt as I am a living witness to his humility and generosity. Just recently, he took hours of his valuable time trying to engage me and team members in meaningful conversation.

My interaction with him did not only give me the chance to listen to him as he offered inspirational advice and prayers, but also availed me the opportunity to learn and follow his religious path to be more God-fearing, humble and more so a better Muslim/person.

You follow his footsteps, you get rewarded here and hereafter because he has lived that kind of a life. Believe me he spoke to me just exactly the way an inspirational father would talk to his son.

He is a man so rich with people, wealth and faith. Such is the character of the man who has instilled the spirit of confidence, motivation, ambition and faith into his world.

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