It appears the immediate past Nigerian President, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan keeps being true to his “Goodluck” name. Even after accepting defeat in the 2015 Nigerian general elections and the insurgence tragedies that distracted his administration, African Sun Times, the largest American based African newspaper unequivocally confers Jonathan with the Honorary title of 2015 International Person of the year; alongside a few others who have been found worthy to be noted as African “ambassadors”. Together, they were all tagged Africa’s top persons of the year, 2015.
7. Ikechi Uko
Award: African Tourism Ambassador of the Year
Meet the media consultant and tourism enthusiast/development expert whose mission is to promote African tourism. In 2008, Ikechi launched the annual Akwaaba African Travel Market in Nigeria. This forum has in attendance people from over 20 African countries, corporate bodies, tourism agencies and hospitality firms. The initiative has also opened up both local and international business and investment opportunities. For this noble effort, Sun Times has awarded Ikechi, African tourism person of the year, which is most deserving I must say.
6. Linda Ikeji
Award: Most Influential Person of the Year Under 40
Linda Ikeji, is one of those who pioneered the blogging initiative in Nigeria; famously known for her brainchild, lindaikeji.blogspot.com. Not only has she set an exemplary pace for many, she has also been supportive to upcoming entrepreneurs through financial assistance and otherwise. African Sun times and in fact the rest of the world are finally appreciating this Nigerian beauty for her talent and skills.
5. Dr. Erieka Bennett
Award: Diaspora Person of the Year
Dr Erieka is an ambassador and president of the African Union Diaspora African Forum (AU/DAF). Relocating from the United States to Ghana, the amazon founded the first Diaspora Diplomatic Mission in Accra, Ghana; creating and cementing ties between Africa and the diaspora community.
4. Dr. Ronald Daniels
Award: Pan-African Person of the Year
Dr Ron Daniel is typically known for his pan-African ideals- upholding the solidarity of all African nations. Consciously, Dr. Ron unites people of multiple races, colors and decent under the umbrella of his organization- the Institute of the Black World and the Pan-African Unity Dialogue- where he serves as president. The 70-year-old has devoted about 2 decades in active humanitarian services to Haitian communities, thus has been honored as the Pan-African person of the year.
3. Arik Air
Award: Corporate Social Responsibility Company of the Year
Based on Corporate Social responsibility (CSR) standards, Arik Air has represented well. First of, Arik Air happens to be the only Nigerian international airline in West Africa to effectively comply with all required American aviation standards to fly to the U.S. The aviation firm privatized the former Nigerian airways in Lagos in 2006, meeting up with the re-capitalization deadline and then registered in 2007. So far they have been rated one of the best in Africa with an excellently set standard of reliability, ethical & first-rate service delivery, and of course, a strong domestic, regional and international flight coverage. Aside the wholesome managerial excellence, Arik has been incredibly supportive to Nigerian diaspora organizations, by way of permitting that their flight tickets be used as a fund-raising medium; there is no better way to give back to the society that makes you relevant.
2. Dr. Jakaya Kikwete
Award: African Statesman of the Year
Still in the interest of peace and democracy, he is one African president who served and vacated his position without any ‘constitution amendment’ scheme to prolong his tenure. For this, he has been recognized and applauded by several reputable institutions, home and abroad. While Jonathan sealed his defeat with a congratulatory phone call, Kikwete seals his hand over to Magufuli with a hug; after a prior active participation in the electoral processes; and of course a peaceful record while in power as president and foreign minister. What other reason could there be not to award the former President of the United Republic of Tanzania with this honorary award?
1. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan
Award: The International Person Of The Year
At the peak of the general elections, Nigeria was literally sitting on a time bomb. However, the then incumbent President, GEJ, who is known to have said countlessly that his political ambition is not worth the blood of one Nigerian citizen proved his own saying true by peacefully handing over to the new administration.
In correspondence, via his Facebook page, Jonathan replies thus:
“I thank The African Sun Times for naming me as its International Person of the year, 2015. I am indeed humbled by this honour. When I think about it, I understand why this medium may have thought me worthy of such an honour. However, I believe that my people, the Nigerian people, are more deserving of this honour. We, the Nigerian people put to shame naysayers and prophets of doom and in 2015, we held a most transparent, violence free and credible elections that transferred power from one political party to another and from an incumbent to the opposition, without rancour, bitterness or strife.”