Takes Over From His Late Father
What The Oyo Reps Member Told City People
Hon. Akin Alabi is a federal lawmaker, representing Egbeda/Ona Ara Federal Constituency in Oyo State. He recently buried his dad, Chief Adediran Alabi who slept in the Lord on 6th September, 2019 and for 3 days he and his siblings shutdown Ibadan. From Wednesday 20th Nob., 2019,Thursday 21st to Friday 22nd, the Alabi family celebrated their late dad. And of course there was a grand reception at the Main Bowl of the Liberty Stadium, Oke-Ado, Ibadan.
Many don’t know he is the Mogaji Ayiwogbo family in Ibadan. He has been since 2016.
At 42, this Ibadan-born politician has done well for himself. He is an accomplished businessman, entrepreneur, and motivational speaker. Every day on his Instagram handle, he ministers to thousands telling them how to succeed in life.
He is the author of the best-selling business and marketing book, Small Business Big Money and also the founder of NairaBET.com. Akin Alabi is the Mogaji (Head) of Ajiwogbo compound in Ibadan. He was appointed by the Olubadan of Ibadan, HRH Saliu Adetunji on Monday, December 5, 2016.
He was born in Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria, to Chief and Chief (Mrs) Adediran Alabi. He had his primary education at Command Children School, Ibadan and secondary education at the Federal Government College Enugu. He proceeded to The Polytechnic, Ibadan where he obtained a Higher National Diploma in Business Administration. He holds a Master’s of Science (Msc) degree in Marketing from the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom. He holds a Certificate in Intellectual Property Strategy from Harvard University, Boston, United States.
Hon. Akin Alabi started his business career in 2003, writing and selling books, manuals and other information products. He proceeded to launching his seminar and training company, specialising in teaching and consulting for other young people, starting their small businesses. He also started publishing a business opportunity newspaper, INCOME (now rested). To add to his publishing enterprise, Akin launched World Soccer News, a weekly sports newspaper.
He has gone on to build many other businesses from scratch. One of them is NairaBET, Nigeria’s first online sports betting portal, with outlets across Nigeria.
He got the idea for NairaBET when he visited the United Kingdom and went to a sports betting shop. He created an information manual about it and sold online. The success of the product prompted him to start his online sports betting platform in Nigeria. Nairabet.com has its headquarters in Lagos with its nationwide operation regulated by the National Lottery Regulatory Commission. NairaBET is Nigeria’s first sports betting company. Akin Alabi is involved in the Nigerian entertainment industry. He is the founder of Nightlife.NG, an online portal that showcases and reports the nightlife industry in Nigeria.
Akin Alabi is involved in philanthropic works. He is the founder of Akin Alabi Foundation, a non-governmental, not for profit outfit, aimed at improving the well being of the average Nigerians.
With the motto, touching lives, one person at a time, the foundation has successfully implemented projects, like building and donating classrooms to primary schools, sinking of boreholes in areas where there is scarcity of pottable water, financial empowerment of widows and a free business and career building event called Youth Enterprise Conference, held annually at Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.
Many don’t know he was involved in Politics before now. Akin Alabi is a member of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). He was once a member of the People’s Democratic Party (Nigeria). Last year he first declared his intention to contest a seat in the House of Representatives, and on June 20, Akin Alabi announced that he would be stepping down as CEO of Nairabet to concentrate on his political campaign. On October 5, 2018, Alabi emerged the All Progressive Congress House of Representatives Candidate for the Egbeda/Ona Ara Federal Constituency in Oyo State for the 2019 general elections.
Akin Alabi is a football buff. He is a fan of Shooting Stars Sports Club (3SC) of Ibadan which his company, NairaBET, sponsors. He is also a fan of Manchester United FC where he is a season ticket holder. He is married with children. A few days back, he spoke to City People Publisher, SEYE KEHINDE about his success story.
What made you go into politics?
I went into politics because I feel it is the most powerful way to touch the lives of people. There is so much you can do as an individual when you look at the system, when you look at the infrastructure, when you look at Law & Order. You can try as an individual but its got a limit. But with power of government, I think one can do much more. That is basically why I went into politics.
Many people were surprised when you decided last year to run for political office. Why did you run?
I don’t think many people should be surprised because I have always loved politics right from when I was a little boy. I contested in 2015 for the same position of House of Reps, but I lost and because I really desire it and because I want to do this, I contested again in 2019 and thankfully I won.
What has been your experience so far as a federal lawmaker?
My experience so far? Ah! Its just been a little over 2 months now, for 2 to 3 weeks out of it, we have been on break. I can see potentials as to things we can do as an Assembly in general and what I can do as an individual. I have identified a lot of bills that I will love to work on, especially as it concerns the ease of doing business in Nigeria. I come from a business background. I am an entrepreneur. And I honestly believe that the best way to tackle the issue of unemployment is through businesses. It is through the growth of business because most people are employed by small and middle class businesses. There are few people employed by the top, top, companies, say by the top banks or top construction companies. But most people are employed by the smaller and medium scale businesses. And as some are coming from that background, I know the hiccups I faced, I know the challenges I have faced. I know the hiccups and challenges that my friends and colleagues in business have faced and if we can do things in terms of financial, in terms of policies to help small and medium scale businesses, they are going to grow. And when a company is hiring 10 people and it currently has 10 people on it its pay role, the company grows 10 times bigger if company is going to hire 10 times more people, that means about 100 more people. So fewer and fewer people will be unemployed. So, I am looking forward to an exciting 4 years at the National Assembly.
Won’t your going into politics negatively affect your business?
I don’t think so, because for real, for about 2 years now, I have not really done anything in my business, because I have been busy campaigning and so on. You see when a business gets to a stage we pray and hope and prepare for a time when the business can run without you being there. So in my various businesses I have not touched them, people are there running things. I don’t have to be there. So it is not a problem at all for me.
You are online all the time advising both young entrepreneurs and business people on how to grow their businesses. Why do you do this? Whats the whole idea?
I come online all the time because I love to teach. I really, really love to teach. I can say that is where my passion lies. For many years, I have written articles I have even written a book, titled SMALL BUSINESSES, BIG MONEY. I love to teach Business, I love to teach Money. I love to teach life lessons in general. I have written articles. I have done free seminars. I have done small seminars. I have done big seminars, one-on-one training, one-on-one consulting, I even had a business opportunity newspaper, which I have now rested. But with the advent of social media, it made it easier for me to reach out to people. So, I am using social media, especially INSTAGRAM to teach. Its free. Its free for me to do. Its free for people to assess it. It does not cost me anything to do it. And I am getting a lot of fantastic testimonies. So, I will keep doing it. I love to do it.
What kind of a person is Hon. Akin Alabi? What was growing up like? Where were you born?
I am a proper Ibadan Boy. I was born in Ibadan. My parents are both from Ibadan. I had my primary school in Ibadan. I went out of Ibadan for my secondary school for my secondary school. I went to Federal Government College, Enugu. I finished in 1994. I came back to Ibadan, and proceeded to Polytechnic Ibadan. Then, I have gone to other places for further education. I have a Certificate in Intellectual Property from Harvard University, Boston, USA. And I have gotten MSC in Marketing from the University of Liverpool in the UK. Growing up was basically in a middle class family. I am the last born of 5 kids I have always liked to do business. I have got a supportive family. Thats it. I like business. I like to teach. I like to sell. I love Marketing. So, I have been hustling doing all kinds of business since I completed my NYSC in 2002 ending. Since January 2003, I have tried my hands in farming, publishing, consulting (there was a time I was selling information products). And my most popular business in Nairabet.
How effective is your reaching out to many people Online through your engagements with the youths?
I believe that in this day and age the most important way and the best and most effectives way to reach out to people in through Online. And I am using that one effectively and it is working effectively. I have got about 130,000 followers on Twitter and another 130,000 on Instagram. It might not be as much as what these celebrities have but it is growing day by day. More and more people are coming Online. Its a very effective method.
I am looking forward to an exciting time at the National Assembly.