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Toyin Saraki Again!Makes History as Nigeria’s First Cannes Lion Judge



Founder/President Wellbeing Foundation Africa, HE  Mrs Toyin Saraki has made history as she has been appointed Nigeria’s first representative among the famous Cannes Lions Jury.

According to an official release from the organisers of the event, which is regarded as the World Cup of the creative industry, Mrs. Saraki was chosen along with representatives from Georgia, Kenya and Sri Lanka to join the Jury which has representatives from 50 different countries..

Mrs Saraki is to judge works in the Glass: Lion of Change Category which has Madonna Badger, Founder/Chief Creative Officer, Badger & Winters, USAas Jury President. The other members of the pane are: 
Tea Uglow, Creative Director, Google, APAC
Rupen Desai, Vice Chairman for Asia-Pacific, Middle East & Africa, Edelman, APACMEA
Judy John, CEO, Canada & Chief Creative Officer, North America, Leo Burnett
Jean Batthany, VP, Creative, Walt Disney Parks & Resorts, Global
Deidre Smalls-Landau, EVP, Global Chief Cross-Cultural Officer, UM and EVP, Managing Director of IDENTITY, Global
Charlotte Beers, Speaker, Author, Former CEO, Ogilvy & Mather, Global
Toyin Ojora Saraki, Philanthropist, Founder-President, Wellbeing Foundation Africa, Nigeria
David Guerrero, Creative Chairman, BBDO Guerrero, The Philippines
Rafael Rizuto, Chief Creative Officer – Founder, TBD, USA

ose Papa, Managing Director of Cannes Lions said: “The job of the Cannes Lions jury is to act as the custodians of creativity and celebrate work that demonstrates the value of creativity in all its forms. We are committed to ensuring that our juries include a diverse range of people from across the branded communications ecosystem.”

Last year the Festival announced new Lions with the introduction of a new Awards architecture to better reflect and support the fast-moving creative industries. These Lions include Creative eCommerce Lions, Brand Experience & Activation Lions, Social & influencer Lions, Sustainable Development Goals Lions and the Industry Craft Lions. An overall reduction in the number of categories within individual Lions refined the focus, while new categories were introduced to reflect how creative companies are operating.

“Cannes Lions is now in its 65th year and in that time the industry, and the organisations operating within it, has changed dramatically. These new specialised Lions require a broader range of skills and experience which will ultimately help expand our perspective of creative excellence,” said Terry Savage, Chairman, Cannes Lions. “The Lions are constantly evolving, just as the industry is, and our jury members are fundamental to ensuring that we keep creativity at the core of what we do.”

The 2018 Cannes Lions Awards will be presented at ceremonies taking place each evening throughout the Festival from the 18-22 June.

The 2018 members are:

Brand Experience & Activation Lions
Rob Reilly, Global Creative Chairman, McCann Worldgroup, Global – Jury President 

Guillermo Tragant, Founder and Chief Creative Officer, Furia, Argentina
Geert Verdonck , Creative Director, TBWA\Belgium, Belgium
Fernando Guntovitch, Founder/CEO, The Group, Brazil
Nuala Byles, EVP, Executive Creative Director, Geometry, Canada
Martin Vinacur, President and Executive Creative Director, AldeA Santiago, Chile
Vivian Yong, Executive Creative Director, Wieden+Kennedy, China
Radouane Hadj Moussa, Chief Creative Officer, DDB Prague, Czech Republic
Juan Manuel Koenig, Chief Creative Officer, Koenig Communications, Ecuador
Souen Le Van, Creative Director, Buzzman, France
Giorgi Avaliani, Creative Director, Leavingstone, Georgia
Sandra Loibl, Executive Creative Director, Serviceplan, Germany
Josh Mullens, Global EP & Head of Projects, Will O’Rourke Experiential, Global
Beatrice Remy, Managing Director, LORE, Hong Kong
Levente Kovacs, Chief Creative Officer, White Rabbit Budapest, Hungary
Brijesh Jacob, Chief Creative Technologist, DDBMudra Group, India
Shani Gershi, VP Creative, Freelance, Israel
Francesco Bozza, Chief Creative Officer, FCB, Italy
Satoshi Otsuka, Communication Architect/Digital Creative, ADK, Japan
Marialejandra Urbina, Director of Planning and Strategy, MullenLowe Group, LATAM
Yasmina Baz, Regional Creative Director, Leo Burnett, Lebanon
Alexis Ospina, Chief Creative Officer, Y&R, Mexico
Emily Beautrais, Creative Director, Clemenger BBDO, New Zealand
Lanre Adisa, Managing Director & Chief Creative Officer, Noah’s Ark, Nigeria
Ester Hjellum, Senior Art Director and Partner, Try, Norway
Juan Pablo Peschiera, Creative Director, Publicis, Peru
Agnieszka Klimczak, Creative Director, J. Walter Thompson, Poland
Pedro Pires, Founder Partner, Solid Dogma, Portugal
Johanna Santiago, Creative Director, J. Walter Thompson, Puerto Rico
Irina Pencea, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Jazz, Romania
Daniele Pancetti, Executive Creative Director, FCB Moscow, Russia
Primus Nair, Executive Creative Director, BBDO Singapore, Singapore
Matt Ross, Executive Creative Director, King James, South Africa
Victoria Sunmie Lhie, Director of Experience Strategy, Cheil Worldwide, South Korea
Gil Blancafort, CEO and Founder, Yslandia, Spain
Linnea Lofjord, Head of Brand Design, NordDDB, Sweden
Dennis Lueck, Chief Creative Officer, Jung von Matt/Limmat, Switzerland
Satit Jantawiwat, Chief Creative Officer, Cheil, Thailand
Darre Van Dijk, Chief Creative Officer, TBWA\Neboko, The Netherlands
Lize Karaboga, Managing Partner, Ultra, Turkey
Juliana Paracencio, Regional Creative Director, Memac Ogilvy & Mather Dubai, UAE
Vicki Maguire, Joint Chief Creative Officer, Grey Global, UK
Shirin Majid, Executive Creative Director, Cake, UK
Tiffany Rolfe, Chief Creative Officer and Partner, Co:collective, USA
Menno Kluin, Chief Creative Officer, 360i, USA

Creative Data Lions
Marc Maleh, Global Director, Havas, Global – Jury President 

Kim Bartkowski, Creative Director, Associate Partner, IBM iX, Australia
Alex Cheng, Vice President, Baidu and Chief Technology Officer, Baidu Search, China
Paola Aldaz, VP Marketing, Mastercard, Colombia
Chloe Hawking, Chief Digital Director, OMG, EMEA
Kim O’Brien, Director, Data Science & Analytics, Publicis.Sapient, Global
Ryota Mochizuki, Managing Director, Accenture Interactive, Japan
Bas Korsten, Creative Partner, J. Walter Thompson Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Sebastian Tomich, SVP, Global Head of Advertising & Marketing Solutions, The New York Times, USA
Amy Avery, Chief Intelligence Officer, Droga5, USA

Creative eCommerce Lions
Nick Law, Global Chief Creative Officer, Publicis Groupe and President of Publicis Communications, Global – Jury President 

Cheelip Ong, Group Chief Creative Officer,, Asia
Andrea Siqueira, Executive Creative Director, Isobar, Brazil
Dan Burdett, Senior Director of Marketing Innovation and Head of EMEA Marketing Lab, eBay, EMEA
Minah Kim, Director of User Experience, Cheil Worldwide, Global
Daniel Bonner, Global Chief Creative Officer, Wunderman, Global
Gemma Spence, Head of eCommerce, PHD Media Global Business, Global
Eric Jannon, VP Executive Creative Director, R/GA New York, USA

Creative Effectiveness Lions
Fernando Machado, Global Chief Marketing Officer, Burger King, Global – Jury President 

Paula Lindenberg, Vice President Marketing, AB-Inbev, Brazil
Harjot Singh, Chief Strategy Officer, McCann Worldgroup, EMEA
Jonny Bauer, Global Chief Strategy Officer, Droga5, Global
Michael Houston, Worldwide CEO, Grey Group, Global
Anuraag Trikha, Global Director, Marketing Communications, Heineken, Global
Kristina Duncan, VP Global Marketing Communications Barbie, Mattel, Global
Brent Nelsen, Chief Strategy Officer, Leo Burnett, North America
Jeeyoung Park, SVP, Corporate Communications & Head of Brand Marketing, Hanwha Group, South Korea
Crystal Rix, Chief Strategy Officer, BBDO New York, USA

Design Lions
Johnny Tan, Executive Creative Director, 72andSunny, APAC – Jury President 

Dominic Hofstede, Executive Creative Director, Maud Melbourne, Australia
Giovanni Vannucchi, Partner, Oz Estratégia+Design, Brazil
Vanessa Eckstein, Creative Director/Founder, Blok Design, Canada
Julia Deshayes, Art Director, TBWA\Paris, France
Katrin Oeding, CEO & Creative Director, Studio Oeding, Germany
Thomas Holst Sørensen, Creative Director, Global Design Innovation, LEGO, Global
Greg Quinton, Chief Creative Officer, Superunion, Global
Connie Birdsall, Sr. Partner and Global Creative Director, Lippincott, Global
Lulu Raghavan, Managing Director, Landor, India
Yuri Uenishi, Art Director, Dentsu Inc., Japan
Leonid Feigin, Creative Director, DDVB, Russia
Carola Gerlach, Former Creative Director, FutureBrand, Singapore
Vumile Mavumengwana, Designer, Creative Director, VM DSGN, South Africa
Ali Rez, Regional Creative Director – Middle East and Pakistan, BBDO, UAE

Digital Craft Lions
Jean Lin, Global CEO, Isobar, Global – Jury President 

Saulo Rodrigues, VP, Executive Creative Director, Visual Design, R/GA, Brazil
Sanne Drogtrop, Head of Integrated Production, Wieden+Kennedy Shanghai, China
Madison Wharton, Global Chief Production Officer, Kirshenbaum Bond Senegal & Partners, Global
Cathrine Movold, Service Designer and Digital Product Strategist, Catalyst Business Design, Norway
Jeroen van der Meer, Executive Creative Director, MediaMonks, The Netherlands
Karen Boswell, Head of Innovations, adamandeveDDB, UK
Steve Jelley, Managing Director, Hammerhead VR, UK
Jennifer McBride, Director of Digital & Innovation, J. Walter Thompson, USA
Resh Sidhu, Creative Director, AKQA, USA

Direct Lions
Susan Credle, Global Chief Creative Officer, FCB, Global – Jury President 

Sergio Pollaccia, Chief Creative Officer/CEO, AMEN, Argentina
Jim Ingram, Founder & Chief Creative Tinker, Thinkerbell, Australia
Sophie De Plecker, Creative Director, Leo Burnett, Belgium
Paulo Coelho, Co-President & Chief Creative Officer, DM9DDB, Brazil
Barbara Williams, Executive Creative Director, Track DDB & Tribal Worldwide, Canada
Francisco Cavada, Executive Creative Director, Y&R Santiago, Chile
Daniel Bermudez, Founder & Chief Creative Officer, FANTÁSTICA / BOMBAI, Colombia
Klara Palmer, Group Creative Director, McCann Prague, Czech Republic
Michael Robert, Chief Creative Officer/Co-Founder, ROBERT/BOISEN & Like-minded, Denmark
Luis Campoverde, General Creative Director, Véritas DDB & Tribal Worldwide, Ecuador
Gaëtan du Peloux, Creative Director, Marcel Paris, France
Felix Fenz, Executive Creative Director, Grabarz & Partner, Germany
Gerrit Zinke, Managing Director and Partner, thjnk Hamburg, Germany
Carol Lam, President & Chief Creative Officer, Leo Burnett, Greater China
Prateek Bhardwaj, National Creative Director, McCann Worldgroup, India
Gina Ridenti, Group Executive Creative Director, TBWA, Italy
Shota Hatanaka, Integrated Campaign Director, Hakuhodo Kettle, Japan
Paola Mounla, Creative Director, J. Walter Thompson, Lebanon
Rocío Cuadra, Vice President Creative, Only If, Mexico
Lisa Fedyszyn, Group Creative Director, Ogilvy & Mather, New Zealand
Alexander Gjersøe, Creative Director & Partner, SMFB Oslo, Norway
Juan Carlos Gomez De La Torre, President, Chief Creative Officer, Circus Grey, Peru
Tomás Froes, Founder & Owner, MSTF Partners, Portugal
Sebastian Olar, Co-Creative Director, MAINSTAGE THE AGENCY, Romania
Polina Maguire, Creative Director, Havas, Russia
Lizi Hamer, Regional Creative Director, Octagon, Singapore
Neo Segola, Creative Director, FCB, South Africa
Kiyoung Kim, Executive Creative Director, Innocean Worldwide, South Korea
Anthony Chelvanathan, Group Creative Director, Leo Burnett, Sri Lanka
Karin Frisell, Senior Creative, Forsman & Bodenfors, Sweden
Sandra Genge, Managing Partner, Creative Strategy, FOUR Werbeagentur AG, Switzerland
Subun Khow, Chief Creative Officer, Dentsu One (Bangkok), Thailand
Kalle Hellzen, Executive Creative Director, 180 Kingsday, The Netherlands
Can Faga, Executive Creative Director, Publicis Istanbul, Turkey
Kapil Bhimekar, Associate Creative Director, Y&R Dubai, UAE
Victoria Fox, CEO, LIDA, UK
Katrina Encanto, Creative Director, MullenLowe London, UK
Corinna Falusi, Chief Creative Officer & Partner, Mother NY, USA
Alfonso Marian, Co-Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy & Mather, USA
Chacho Puebla, Chief Creative Officer & Friend, MullenLowe, Western Europe & LATAM

Entertainment Lions
Debbi Vandeven, Global Chief Creative Officer, VML, Global – Jury President 

Claudia Cristovao, Head of Brand Studio, Google, APAC
Lisa Buchan, Director, Lisa Buchan Consultancy, EMEA
Alexandra Ouzilleau, Global Head of Entertainment Partnerships, Havas Group, France
Alexandre Tan, VP Advertising & Brand Partnerships, Gameloft, France
Nils Rottsahl, Head of Edelman.ergo STUDIOS & Executive Producer, Edelman.ergo, Germany
Andre Llewellyn, Global Brand Strategy, Instagram, Global
Rafael Lazarini, Senior Vice President, Head of Business Development, Live Nation Entertainment, LATAM
Walid Kanaan, Chief Creative Officer, TBWA\RAAD, MENA
Reed Collins, Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy & Mather, North Asia
Miguel Bemfica, Chief Creative Officer, MRM McCann, Spain
Alice Chou, Chief Creative Officer, Dentsu Taiwan
Bas Verhart, Founder, THNK School of Creative Leadership and DFFRNT Media, The Netherlands
Luke Southern, Managing Director, DRUM, UK
Jez Nelson, CEO & Chief Creative Officer, Somethin’ Else, UK
Kristin Greene, Co-Founder/Principal, Flashpoint PR, USA
Elizabeth Lindsey, Managing Partner, Wasserman, USA
Ari Halper, Chief Creative Officer, FCB New York, USA
Rebecca Skinner, Managing Director / Executive Producer, Superprime Films, USA
Amy Emmerich, Chief Content Officer, Refinery29, USA

Film Lions
Luiz Sanches, Partner & Chief Creative Officer, AlmapBBDO, Brazil – Jury President 

Laura Visco, Creative Director, 72andSunny Amsterdam, Argentina
Jen Speirs, Deputy Executive Creative Director, BMF, Australia
Laura Esteves, Creative Director, Y&R, Brazil Helen Pak, Chief Creative Officer, Grey Group Canada and President, Grey Toronto, Canada
Thomas Hoffmann, Creative Director and Owner, & Co., Denmark
Steffen Bärenfänger, Executive Creative Director, Mackevision, Germany
Fred Levron, Worldwide Creative Partner, FCB, Global
Senthil Kumar, Chief Creative Officer, J. Walter Thompson, India
Stefania Siani, Executive Creative Director, DLV BBDO, Italy
Takayuki Niizawa, Senior Creative Director, TBWA\Hakuhodo, Japan
Ariel Soto, VP & Chief Creative Officer, BBDO, Mexico
Koh Hwee Peng, Creative Partner, Blak Labs, Singapore
George Low, Creative Director, TBWA\Hunt\Lascaris JHB , South Africa
Isahac Oliver, Executive Creative Director, &Rosàs, Spain
Gustav Egerstedt, Executive Creative Director, Saatchi & Saatchi, Sweden
Asawin Phanichwatana, Executive Creative Director, GREYnJ UNITED, Thailand
Jessica Kersten, Co-Founder & Creative Director, Cloudfactory, The Netherlands
Valentine Freeman, Creative Director and Filmmaker, Other Animals, Inc., USA
Sally-Ann Dale, Chief Creation Officer, Droga5, USA

Film Craft Lions
Diane McArter, Founder & President, Furlined, Global – Jury President 

Colin Renshaw, VFX Supervisor, Company Director, Alt.vfx, Australia
Alberto Lopes, Partner & Executive Producer, Vetor Zero, Brazil
Vibeke Nannerup, Founder & CEO, Liquidminds, Denmark
Dushan Drakalski, Chief Creative Officer, Y&R Productions, Europe
Masato Kosukegawa, Creative Director, Shiseido, Japan
Nick Bailey, Chairman, Independent, The Netherlands
James Bland, Partner, Blink, UK
Diane Jackson, Chief Production Officer, DDB Chicago, USA
Oliver Fuselier, Managing Partner, Tool of North America, USA
Gayle McCormick, Executive Producer, Ogilvy & Mather, USA

Glass: The Lion for Change
Madonna Badger, Founder/Chief Creative Officer, Badger & Winters, USA – Jury President 

Tea Uglow, Creative Director, Google, APAC
Rupen Desai, Vice Chairman for Asia-Pacific, Middle East & Africa, Edelman, APACMEA
Judy John, CEO, Canada & Chief Creative Officer, North America, Leo Burnett
Jean Batthany, VP, Creative, Walt Disney Parks & Resorts, Global
Deidre Smalls-Landau, EVP, Global Chief Cross-Cultural Officer, UM and EVP, Managing Director of IDENTITY, Global
Charlotte Beers, Speaker, Author, Former CEO, Ogilvy & Mather, Global
Toyin Ojora Saraki, Philanthropist, Founder-President, Wellbeing Foundation Africa, Nigeria
David Guerrero, Creative Chairman, BBDO Guerrero, The Philippines
Rafael Rizuto, Chief Creative Officer – Founder, TBD, USA

Health & Wellness Lions
R.John Fidelino, Executive Creative Director, InterbrandHealth, Global – Jury President 

Carol Ong, President, Bebebalm, Asia
Cherie Davies, Creative Director, Sudler & Hennessey, Australia
Bruno Abner Rebelo, Creative Director, McCann Health, Brazil
Andre Hansen, Creative Director, Anthill Agency, Denmark
Orla Burke, Partner, EMEA Healthcare co-Lead, FleishmanHillard, EMEA
Tom Richards, Chief Creative Office, Havas Lynx, Europe
Alok Gadkar, General Manager & Executive Creative Director, The Classic Partnership, UAE
Melissa de Lusignan, Group Creative Director, The Hive Group, UK
Stephanie Berman, Former Partner & Chief Creative Officer, The Bloc, USA
Collette Douaihy, EVP, Executive Creative Director, Digitas Health, USA

Industry Craft Lions
Yang Yeo, Creative Kaiju , Hakuhodo Inc., APAC – Jury President 

Alessandra Sadock, Creative Director, Artplan, Brazil
Kaz Tsuburaku, Chief Creative Officer, Dentsu Shanghai, China
Tereza Sverakova, Chief Creative Officer, Y&R Prague, Czech Republic
Abbie Walsh, Group Director, Fjord, EALA
Cristiana Boccassini, Chief Creative Officer, Publicis Italy, Italy
Osborne Macharia, Owner & Photographer, K63 Studio, Kenya
Oskar Lübeck, Founder & Executive Creative Director, Bold, Sweden
Susan Young, EVP, Executive Creative Director, McCann New York, USA
Alvar Suñol, Co-President & Chief Creative Officer, ALMA DDB, USA

Innovation Lions
Tor Myhren, VP Marketing Communications, Apple, Global – Jury President 

Eco Moliterno, Chief Creative Officer, Accenture Interactive, Brazil
Bessie Lee, Founder & CEO, Withinlink, China
Frederic Josue, Director of 18 (Havas X) and Global Executive Advisor, Havas, Global
Tessa Conrad, Global Director of Operations, TBWA & DAN Worldwide, Global
Perry Nightingale, Executive Creative Technologist, Grey Global, Global
Eran Gefen, Founder, Gefen Team – Innovation Agency, Israel
Johan Pihl, Creative Director, Great Works, Sweden
Thecla Schaeffer, Chief Marketing Officer, G-Star, The Netherlands
Tracey Follows, Head of Strategy, Wired Consulting, WIRED, UK

Media Lions
Tim Castree, Global CEO, Wavemaker, Global – Jury President 

Martin Guirado, President, IPG Mediabrands, Argentina
Fiona Johnston, CEO, UM, Australia
Sophie Van Laer, Strategy Director, Initiative, Belgium
Cesar Toledo, Media VP, Tribal Worldwide, Brazil
Alain Desormiers, CEO, PHD and Touché!, Canada
Amrita Randhawa, CEO Asia Pacific & Executive Chair, Mindshare, China
Javier Urbaneja, Chief Creative Officer, Havas Tribu, Costa Rica
Stine Halberg, CEO, Publicis Media, Denmark
Hernando Eslava, Chief Executive Media Agencies, Peña Defilló Group, Dominican Republic
Neil Hurman, Chief Advisory Officer, OMD, EMEA
Chris Skinner, President, UM, EMEA
Andreas Bahr, Founder and Member of the Board, Fluent AG, Europe
Severine Six, CEO, All Response Media, France
Tino Krause, CEO, Mediacom, Germany
Greg James, Global Chief Strategy Officer, Havas Media Group, Global
Izzy Hedges, EVP, International Media, Vizeum, Global
Nigel Conway, Head of Global Media, Nestle, Global
Rajni Menon, CEO, Carat, India
Ran Bar- On, CEO & Partner, Mediacom, Israel
Chiara Tescari, Managing Partner, OMD, Italy
Sanshiro Shimada, General Manager, Hakuhodo DY Media Partners, Japan
Lina Rivero, Strategy & Innovation Director, Havas, LATAM
Ravi Rao, CEO, Mindshare, MENA
Marta Ruiz-Cuevas, CEO, Publicis Media, Mexico
Nigel Douglas, CEO, OMD, New Zealand
Marie-Louise Alvær, Managing Director, PHD, Norway
Patrick Van Ginhoven, CEO, OMG, Peru
Dana Bulat, General Manager, United Media Services, Romania
Natalia Kiryanova, CEO, Wavemaker, Russia
Wayne Bishop, Managing Director, PHD, South Africa
Ester Garcia Cosin, General Manager, Havas Media Group, Spain
Niclas Fröberg, Chairman & Founder, Tre Kronor Media, Sweden
Nannette Passberg, Account Director, Carat, Switzerland
Pathamawan Sathaporn, Managing Director, Mindshare, Thailand
Danielle Pak, Head of Comms & Digital Strategy, Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Tolga Uner, CEO, Mediacom, Turkey
Amy Armstrong, CEO, Initiative, USA
Diana Bojaj, EVP, Managing Partner, Global Connections Planning, UM/J3 , USA
Kendra Hatcher King, VP, Strategy and Consulting, South Region Lead, SapientRazorfish, USA

Mobile Lions
Jay Morgan, Innovations Director, The Monkeys, Australia – Jury President 

Fabio Simoes, Executive Creative Director & Digital Creative Director, FCB , Brazil
Fura Johannesdottir, VP Executive Creative Director, Publicis.Sapient, EMEA
Aurélie de Villeneuve, Executive Creative Director, 5emeGauche Herezie Group, France
Oliver Drost, Chief Creative Officer, deepblue networks, Germany
Andrew Keller, Global Creative Director, Facebook Creative Shop, Global
Flavio Fabbri, Digital Chief Creative Officer, Armando Testa Group, Italy
Kyoko Yonezawa, Creative Technologist, Dentsu Inc., Japan
Harsh Kapadia, Executive Creative Director, VML, UK
Ari Weiss, Chief Creative Officer NA, DDB Worldwide, USA

Entertainment Lions for Music
Lori Feldman, EVP Strategic Marketing, Warner Bros. Records, USA – Jury President 

Kito Siqueira, Music & Sound Producer, Satellite Audio, Brazil
Jeannette Perez, President of Global Synch & Brand Partnerships, Kobalt | AWAL, Global
Jackie Jantos, Vice President, Brand & Creative, Spotify, Global
Leo Premutico, Co-Founder & Chief Creative Officer, Johannes Leonardo, Global
Sander van Maarschalkerweerd, Founding Partner & CEO, Sizzer Group, The Netherlands
Mike O’Keefe, VP 4th Floor Creative, Sony Music , UK
Jocelyn Brown, Executive Producer, Squeak E Clean Productions, USA
Joel Simon, CEO & Chief Creative Officer, JSM Music, USA

Outdoor Lions
Chris Garbutt, Chief Creative Officer, TBWA, Global – Jury President 

Mariana Borga, Creative Director, J. Walter Thompson, Brazil
Stephan Vogel, Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy & Mather, EMEA
Jean-François Sacco, Chief Creative Officer & Co-Founder, Rosapark, France
Jayanta Jenkins, Global Group Creative Director, Twitter, Global
Pallavi Chakravarti, Executive Creative Director, Taproot Dentsu, India
Daniel Kee, Executive Creative Director, MullenLowe, Singapore
Damisa Ongsiriwattana, Co-Founder/ Executive Creative Director, SOUR Bangkok, Thailand
Erica Hoholick, President, phenomenon, USA

Pharma Lions
Rich Levy, Chief Creative Officer, FCB Health, Global – Jury President 

Shefali Srinivas, VP, Health Lead, Asia Pacific, WE Communications, APAC
Patrick Ackmann, Executive Creative Director, WEFRA, Germany
Oliver Caporn, Worldwide Creative Director and Executive Director, CDM London, Global
Renata Florio, Executive Creative Director, Ogilvy Health and Wellness, Global
Lyndon Louis, Senior Creative Director, Havas Live Sorento, India
Paola Figueroa, Creative VP, Made, Mexico
John Scott, Creative Director, Ward6, Singapore
Victoria McGee, Associate Creative Director, Langland, UK
Carolyn O’Neill, Chief Creative Officer, Centron NY, USA

PR Lions
Stuart Smith, Global CEO, Ogilvy PR, Global – Jury President 

Cassandra Cheong, Founder, Accenzvision, APAC
Damian Martinez Lahitou, CEO, Feedback PR, Argentina
Aden Ridgeway, Partner, Cox Inall Ridgeway, Australia
Patricia Bartuira, Director, FleishmanHillard, Brazil
Mia Pearson, CEO, MSL, Canada
Darren Burns, President, China, and Chair, Creativity & Innovation, Asia Pacific, Weber Shandwick
Andres Ortiz, Senior Partner, Dattis, Colombia
Anders Sigsgaard-Rasmussen, Head of Insight, Radius Kommunication, Denmark
Arnaud Pochebonne, General Manager, Weber Shandwick, France
Mirko Kaminski, CEO, achtung!, Germany
Lesley Sillaman, Senior Vice President, Havas PR, Global
Cecile Nathan-Tilloy, Managing Director – Global Client Relationship, Edelman Intelligence, Global
Alan VanderMolen, President International, WE Communications, Global
Valerie Pinto, CEO, Weber Shandwick, India
Ishteyaque Amjad, Public Affairs & Communications, Coca-Cola, India & South West Asia
Elisabeth Leriche, Advertising, Digital & CRM Manager, Renault, Italy
Tetsuji Hirose, Executive Officer, Dentsu Inc., Japan
Adriana Valladares, CEO, Burson Marsteller, Mexico
Gina McKinnon, General Manager, Fuse, New Zealand
Sindre Beyer, Head of PR and Content Marketing, Try, Norway
Agnieszka Bacińska, CEO, Walk PR, Poland
José Franco, Founder & CEO, Corpcom, Portugal
Andreea Grigorean, PR Officer, Publicis, Romania
Alexander Chernov, Board Member, SVP, Skolkovo Foundation, Russia
Ee Rong Chong, Group Managing Director, Ogilvy, Singapore
Michelle Tham, Managing Director, Hill+Knowlton Strategies, Singapore and Malaysia
Higinio Martínez, CEO, Omnicom PR Group, Spain and Portugal
Mattias Ronge, Chairman, Creative Strategist, Edelman Deportivo, Sweden
David Schärer, Partner, Rod Kommunikation, Switzerland
Sorada Sonprasit, CEO, Brilliant & Million, Thailand
Wendeline Sassen, Strategy Director, Havas Lemz, The Netherlands
Ann Maes, Head of Influence, Ogilvy Amsterdam and Managing Director, Ogilvy Public Relations, The Netherlands and Belgium
Gizem Kececi, Director of Corporate Communications, Siemens, Turkey
Alex Malouf, Corporate Communications Manager, Arabian Peninsula, Procter & Gamble, UAE
Candace Kuss, Director of Social Media, Hill+Knowlton Strategies, UK
Ruth Yearley, Partner, Director of Insight and Strategy, Ketchum PR, UK
Denise Kaufmann, Partner, Director Client Development, North America, Ketchum, USA
Jaclyn Ruelle, SVP, Group Account Director, MullenLowe PR, USA
Tonya Veasey, President & CEO, OCGPR, USA

Print & Publishing Lions
Kate Stanners, Chairwoman & Global Chief Creative Officer, Saatchi & Saatchi, Global – Jury President 

Rodolfo Sampaio, Creative Partner, Moma Propaganda, Brazil
Jaime Mandelbaum, Chief Creative Officer, Y&R, Europe
Diego Medvedocky, Chief Creative Officer, Grey Group, LATAM
Marta Lluciá, Executive Creative Director, McCann Worldgroup, Spain
Livio Dainese, Chief Creative Officer & Co-CEO, Wirz BBDO, Switzerland
Leigh Reyes, President & Chief Creative Officer, MullenLowe, The Philippines
Rosie Arnold, Creative Partner & Head of Art, AMV BBDO, UK
Justine Armour, Executive Creative Director, 72andSunny NYC, USA

Product Design Lions
Asif Khan, Architect, Asif Khan Ltd, Global – Jury President 

Christiane Bausback, Managing Director + Head of Design, N+P Industrial Design, Germany
Jeremy Lindley, Global Design Director, Diageo, Global
Darshan Gandhi , Head of Design, Godrej Consumer Products, India
Raffaella Citterio, Head of Experience, Interbrand, Italy
Naoki Ono, Copywriter/Product Designer, Hakuhodo, Japan
Per Ivar Selvaag, Principal, Montaag, Norway
Alex Hulme, Director, Map Project Office, UK
Victoria Slaker, VP, Industrial Design, Ammunition, USA
Rei Inamoto, Founding Partner, Inamoto & Co, USA

Radio & Audio Lions
Jo McCrostie, Creative Director, Global, UK – Jury President 

Alvaro Rodrigues, Chief Creative Officer & CEO, Fullpack, Brazil
Jenny Smith, President / Creative Director, Ray, Canada
Matthias Storath, MD, Executive Creative Director, Heimat, Germany
Kerry Keenan, Co-Founder & Chief Creative Officer, Never The Less, Global
Toby Talbot, Chief Creative Officer, Saatchi & Saatchi, New Zealand
Hugo Delgado, General Director, Grupo RPP, Peru
Molefi Thulo, Creative Director, Ogilvy JHB, South Africa
Blanca Gomara, Executive Creative Director, Dimensión, Spain
Jill Kershaw, CEO, Executive Creative Director, Sound & Fury, USA

Sustainable Development Goals Lions
Mark Tutssel, Executive Chairman and Chief Creative Officer, Leo Burnett Worldwide, Global – Jury President 

Akae Wang, Executive Creative Director, Tencent, China
Jean-Charles Caboche, Managing Director, BETC, France
Maher Nasser, Director of the Outreach Division (Judging in Personal Capacity), United Nations, Global
Claudia Romo Edelman, Chair, We Are All Human Foundation and Co-Host, Global GoalsCast, Global
Kash Sree, Executive Creative Director, gyro, Global
Ariana Stolarz, Global Chief Strategy Officer, MRM//McCann, Global
Eduardo Maruri, President & CEO, Grey Latam, President & CCO Maruri Grey, LATAM
Gustavo Lauria, Chief Creative Officer & Co-Founder, We Believers, USA
Tina Allan, EVP Director of Data Solutions, BBDO New York, USA

Social & Influencer Lions
Mark D’Arcy, VP, Chief Creative Officer, Facebook, Global – Jury President 

Mônica Salgado, Journalist, Influencer, TV Presenter, Mônica Salgado, Brazil
Lennie Stern, Head of Creative and Entertainment Strategies, BETC, France
Ralf Osteroth, Senior VP Marketing & Sales, Studio71, Germany
Eric Edge, Head of Global Marketing Communications, Pinterest, Global
Anthony Svirskis, CEO, TRIBE, Global
Noriaki Onoe, Creative Director, Dentsu Inc., Japan
Gerard Crichlow, Head of Cultural Strategy, AMVBBDO, UK
Michelle Franzoia, Executive Creative Director, Edelman, USA
Catherine Patterson, Director Experiential NA, Y&R, USA

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Colleen DeCourcy, Chief Creative Officer, Wieden+Kennedy, Global – Jury President 

Eugene Cheong, Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy & Mather, Asia Pacific
James McGrath, Creative Chairman, Clemenger BBDO, Australia
Jason Xenopoulos, Global Chief Vision Officer & Chief Creative Officer, VML, EMEA
Caitlin Ryan, Regional Creative Director, Facebook and Instagram, EMEA
PJ Pereira, Creative Chairman & Co-Founder, Pereira O’Dell, Global
Fred Raillard, Founder, Chief Creative Officer , FF, Global
Susan Bonds, Co-Founder & CEO, 42 Entertainment, Global
Gail Heimann, President , Weber Shandwick, USA
Duncan Marshall, Founding Partner, Droga5,


Guber Polls: Second Term Seeking Governors Fret




By Eric Elezuo

As Nigerians march to various polling units across the 36 states of the federation to elect 28 governors out of 837 candidates and 993 House of Assembly members out of 10,240 candidates, a special prayer for a smooth electoral process devoid of what was obtainable on February 23, 2023 when the presidential and National Assembly elections were held has been canvassed.

It is on record that the February 23 elections were marred by violence, none transmission of results electronically, harassment and intimidation of voters not loyal to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) by thugs allegedly loyal to the APC and flagrant distortion of election results. While some governments have congratulated the announced winner of the presidential election, most international bodies including The Financial Times, New York Times, The Economist and many others have condemned the election and the emergence of the APC candidate, Bola Tinubu, saying everything was heavily flawed. Presently, the matter is in court as two presidential candidates; Peter Obi of the Labour Party and Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), who felt aggrieved are seeking redress from the judiciary.

But with the way things turned out during the previous election, regarding how the emergence of the Labour Party and Peter Obi proved to be a game changer, and practically retired some old politicians as well as swept votes in places considered strongholds of some politically godfathers, governors who are seeking reelection have become jittery as fear of the Labour Party sunami has created a new chapter in the political equilibrium.

In the 28 states where governorship elections will be held, 10 are seeking reelection. They are Babagana Zulum of Borno State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State, Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State, Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, Abdulraman Abdulrazaq of Kwara State, Mohammed Bala of Bauchi State, Umaru Fintiri of Adamawa State, Muhammad Inuwa of Gombe State and Bello Matawalle of Zamfara State.

Most of the governors listed above did not perform in delivering their states to their presidential candidates, and as a result, have come under intense tension as to what may go down at the polling units with special regards to their quest to return to their various government houses for another four years. Consequently, supporters of some governors and political parties resolved to attacks of supporters of other political parties either physically or emotionally.

In Lagos where Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu is having a running battle with the candidate of the Labour Party, Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour, and to some extent the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Olajide Adediran, situation has degenerated to ethnic attacks, with the indigenes throwing tantrums at the Igbo for supporting the LP, and by extension Rhodes-Vivour. The Yoruba has insisted that the candidacy of Rhodes-Vivour has been rejected because he was born of Igbo-mother. Consequently, many Yoruba have cast aspersions at his candidacy, saying he was Igbo, and Lagos was not going to hand over their affairs to a ‘foreigner’. These notion, which has not only been perpetrated by the ordinary man, but by supposedly high placed citizens including Femi Fani-Kayode, who also almost in his characteristic stride, set up a conflict between the Igbo and Yoruba, with a damning article, “The Truth About the Igbos”, and the many others, has created skirmishes against the Igbo in Lagos. the thugs, who were well on ground during the presidential election, have also returned with threats of dealing with any Igbo voting against the APC.

In a viral video, a known thug, Musiliu Akinsanya, known by his nickname, MC Oluomo, was seen threatening the people of the Southeast not to risk coming out to vote if they are voting against the APC.

“We have begged them. If they don’t want to vote for us, it is not a fight. Tell them, mama Chukwudi, if you don’t want to vote for us, sit down at home. Sit down at home,” he said.

But the Police, speaking through the Force Public Relations Officer, Olumuyiwa Adejobi, said Oluomo was joking when he made the utterance. As a result, he was not even as much as invited to explain his position or why he made such a costly joke.

“So, let us take it for a joke like he has said. But nobody has the right to tell Nigerians not to come out and vote. It is not allowed. It is not possible; not proper. But he has come out to debunk that it is not true. So, let us leave it that way – that it is not true and a joke within one or two persons in that area at that particular point in time. Even the CP of Lagos was on a television programme this afternoon to address that if it is true, they are investigating that matter,” Adejobi said during a live TV show.

But one thing was sure, the threat of losing his position because of the overwhelming support the LP was receiving in Lagos, Sanwo-Olu became more visible in campaigns, and became to appear on TV interviews which he had hitherto shunned and became more accessible to Lagosians, who agreed that he had been faraway from the people in the last four years. He had paid pension, increased salaries of civil servants, released seized property among other people oriented actions he was wont to have taken long before now.

Another angle the Yoruba elites have stooped low to attack Igbo is in the area of unconfirmed notion of Igbo saying Lagos was ‘no man’s land’. So far, not one of the speakers, or writers, who made the assertion has quoted a source where the statement came from, prompting observers to conclude that the mindless attacks were products of hatred against the Igbo race. It has also been noised that the Igbo wanted to conquer Lagos through electing Rhodes-Vivour, who also is a Yoruba man.

“That is one of the most laughable part of this whole scenario. How can the election of a young Yoruba man means conquering Lagos. Isn’t it the more reason people should see there’s no credence in the entire setting. The Yorubas have, because of hatred forgotten that everyone wants the stranglehold of Bola Tinubu for over 24 years in Lagos to end. Yet, even those that are supposedly in the know have turned around to weave a tale of Igbo aiming to take over Lagos because Gbadebo is contesting against Tinubu’s candidate,” a prominent Lagos indigene, who craved anonymity said.

What is more worrisome, a cross section of Lagos residents told The Boss, is that the yarn is not only being peddled by illiterates or layabouts, but by people who are well looked up to by the younger generation. It would be recalled that during the prelude to the presidential contest, Sam Omatseye, who is the chairman of the editorial board of the The Nations Newspapers, owned by Bola Tinubu, pen an opinion titled Obi-tuary, where he derided the person of Peter Obi and the Igbo race. His was not the last as many others followed.

What is more obvious than clear is the fact that a new precedence has been set by the so called Yoruba people fighting against Gbadebo. It means that many of them married to women of other tribes including foreign women, has automatically denied their children of Yoruba heritage. If a child born of another tribe-woman but Yoruba father is not of full Yoruba blood, then the race should be in for a crisis as many Yoruba men are spread across the world, and no one knows where the arrow of love will strike him.

Of more importance is the fact that Rhodes-Vivour contested the senatorial position for Lagos west in 2019 under the PDP, but no one remembered that he was a half breed. Then he had no chance of winning. Today, hatred has arisen because the young man was riding on the new found popularity of Peter Obi as the face of Nigerian politics presently, to sell himself.

“The day we purge ourselves of the crisis of ethnicity and tribalism, especially the one rooted in blind godfatherism, that will be the day a little respite of brotherliness will be deposited in the nation’s body polity,” a political analyst said.

In Oyo State, the sitting governor, Seyi Makinde, has every reason to worry. He is one of the G5 governors, who abandoned the PDP and its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, to support Tinubu to victory in Oyo. Today, the APC has denied any form of alliance with the governor, and transferred allegiance to its governorship candidate, Teslim Folarin. The sitting governor will battle to regain the confidence of the party he abandoned, and how he can make APC keep to their side of the bargain during the presidential race. As it stands, other members of the G5 has been made irrelevant having lost their bid to seek senatorial election. They are Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State and Samuel Ortom of Benue State. The last and leader of the group, Nyesom Wike of Rivers State is battling to ensure his candidate, Sim Fubara emerges the governor of Rivers State. If Fubara and Makinde loses today, that would mark the inglorious end of the G5.

In Nasarawa, Abdullahi Sule’s loss to the LP during the presidential election, is an eye opener, and has made the PDP family to intensify campaigns to ensure they return to government house. This is not forgetting that the APC is also hot on their heels.

In Kwara State, the government of Abdulrazaq will be facing another set of Otoge revolution chiefly because of the the general view that the governor under-performed, and again with the Bukola Saraki rising profile in the last four years..

In Bauchi State, Governor Bala Mohammed of the PDP is having a photo finish with his rival from the APC. The race for superiority has been the major cause of armed skirmishes between the supporters of both parties.

In Ogun State, the rivalry between the incumbent governor, Dapo Abiodun and former governor of the state, Senator Ibikunle Amosun continue to heighten. Though both men are in the same APC, Amosun is however sponsoring and supporting the candidate of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), Biyi Otegbeye as thye incumbent owing to person issues. Abiodun will need more than his track record to defeat Amosun again.

In Adamawa State, the government of Ahmadu Fintiri will have a running battle with the APC candidate, Aishatu Binani, who is a woman. The crave for a first woman governor is keeping Fintiri at the edge of his seat as the governorship election lasts.

Whichever the pendulum swings, it must be noted that the sitting governors, who are seeking second terms are fretting owing to pronounced and tangible oppositions.

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Photo News: Dele Momodu Meets FIFA Executives in Rwanda




Veteran journalist and Chairman, Ovation Media Group, Chief Dele Momodu, was among the special guests of honour at the special FIFA event held in Kigali

Amaju Pinnick, Dele Momodu, President Paul Kagame of Rwanda and Isha Johansen after the FIFA Council Dinner in Kigali…

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Court Set to Decide Nigeria’s Next President




By Eric Elezuo

The much awaited February 25, 2023 Presidential and National Assembly Elections have come and gone. Not only has the election been concluded, the Prof. Mahmood Yakubu-led Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has also concluded collation of results, and on March 1, 2023 declared the candidate of the ruling All Progressives Progress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu as the winner, and president-elect.

But the declaration of Tinubu as winner has popped up more electoral act crisis as two of the major parties and their presidential candidates in the election have rejected the election in its totality, calling for a total cancellation. They maintain that the elections were heavily flawed with potent evidence of manipulations, harassment, violence, intimidation and stealing and destruction of electoral materials all in the name of denying a group of people their rights to vote.

Consequently, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Mr. Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP) have taken their grievances to the judiciary to seek redress with each claiming that they won the election. They agreed that INEC worked to favour the ruling party, ignoring the use of the much publicised Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) and the promise to electronically transmit results to IReV in real time. But all the calls made to INEC to call off the announcement of results to review identified lapses were rebuffed with the continuation of election results and the subsequent declaration of Tinubu as winner. The battle has therefore shifted to the Appeal Court where the first part of crossfire will take place before the Supreme Court finally decides without recourse to another authority.

Except in 2015 when former President Goodluck Jonathan took the path of honour and conceded defeat to Muhammadu Buhari, all other elections have been contested in the courts, and the courts have been the ultimate decider. Buhari remained the chief litigant as he has practically gone to court on record occasions including against Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, Alhaji Musa Yaradua and Dr. Goodluck Jonathan. Presently, all the parties in the suit have been granted permission to interrogate all INEC election materials.

Declaring his decision to challenge INEC’s declaration in court, Obi addressed a press conference a day after, and declared as follows:

“This is my first time of speaking to the media, and I thank all of you for your understanding. For me, it is a very simple thing to speak to Nigerians who on the 25th of February trooped out en masses as committed citizens to participate in what all of us have called an existential election, for a supposedly free, fair, credible presidential and national assembly election. We give thanks to God.

“For me, the number one thing is gratitude. Gratitude to God Almighty that continues to protect and bless our dear country Nigeria. Number two is gratitude. Gratitude to Nigerians that participated in the election, answering the call as true citizens in our dear country. Number three is gratitude to those of you Nigerians, especially the youth, that believed and worked tirelessly for a new Nigeria, I thank them for the hard work. Gratitude to the Obidients, Youths, those who believe that a new Nigeria is possible, and I say to them that a new Nigeria is possible, and we will work for that new Nigeria.

“The resilience, the hard work, for a new Nigeria should not wane. Datti and I remain committed to that new Nigeria. I know how they will be feeling now because of the way the elections have come and gone. The commitment of Nigerians, even in the face of unwarranted attacks, is a testimony that a new Nigeria is indeed possible. I look at people like Lady Jennifer who was stabbed but insisted on voting, and that gives me courage to believe that a new Nigeria is indeed possible –and there are so many other Nigerians.

“The election that we just witnessed has been conducted and results announced as programmed. It is a clear violation of the electoral rules and guidelines as we were promised. This election did not meet the minimum standard expected of a free, transparent, credible fair election. It will go down as one of the most controversial elections ever conducted in Nigeria.

“The good and hardworking people of Nigeria have again been robbed by our supposed leaders whom they trusted. However, very humbly, I must appeal to all Nigerians to remain peaceful, law-abiding, and conduct themselves in the most responsible manner. Please be assured that Datti and I, and indeed all of us, this is not the end but the beginning of the journey for the birth of a new Nigeria. Datti Baba-Ahmed and I remain undaunted and committed to the project of a new Nigeria that will be built on honesty, transparency, fairness, justice, equity.

“All the above starts with a process. The process through which people come into office is far more fundamental, more important than what they do thereafter. It is my belief that if you must answer “His Excellency”, the process through which you arrive to office must be excellent.

“We must now require that we do the right things. It has to generate the confidence and moral authority to lead. As you know, the destruction of a society begins and gradually progresses when we act rascally, with the deliberate manipulation of the rule of law and the suppression of the will of the people. During my campaign we have been saying that we will govern by the rule of law because we know what not doing that will bring about.

“I assure the good people of Nigeria that we will explore all legal and peaceful options to recall our mandate.

“We won the election, and we will prove it to Nigerians.

“Please, do not despair. We have elections coming up on the 11th. I enjoin you to go out. Campaign. Come out and vote in that election. We still have so many massive support out there that we need for our subnational and state assemblies. Please, come out and be part of that election. I assure you that I will be part of it. I assure you that I am totally committed to a better future in this country, and nothing will stop that. Datti’s commitment, my commitment, is total.

“Be rest assured that your support will not be in vain and you will not find us wanting. We must build a better Nigeria where Nigerian youth will be happy, glad to call their own country.

“Thank you and may God Almighty continue to bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”

Also, the presidential candidate of the PDP followed and declared as follows:

“Fellow Nigerians, it is with a heart full of sadness that I address you today.

“I have in the last three decades devoted my life to the battle to birth and deepen democracy in our country.

“It was a battle that started during the military era. It was a struggle that nearly caused me my life and that of my son, Adamu, in Kaduna. I survived the assassination only by the mercies and grace of God.

“Following that attack, I was forced into exile. But that attack claimed the precious lives of some police officers. That was not all: my businesses were nearly crippled and my signature business was eventually appropriated by the maximum ruler of that era. My commitment to enthroning democracy ensured that I joined forces with other compatriots. As a leader of the defunct Social Democratic Party (SDP), we fought and won the 1993 presidential election, which was acclaimed as the fairest and freest election in our history. Sadly, Chief MKO Abiola, who embodied that hope for the birth of a new Nigeria, paid the ultimate price

“Our fight to enthrone democracy continued. Indeed, the motivating factor for the birth of the Peoples Democratic Party was to force the exit of the military from government and their permanent return to the military barracks.

“Following the exit of the military and the advent of democratic rule in 1999, I did not rest on my oars. I deployed the same level of commitment to advance and deepen our democracy. I did this because our democracy was bought at a huge price of human lives. My mentor and true Nigerian hero, who this venue in which we are gathered this evening is named for, was one of those who paid the ultimate price in that battle. So, also was Chief Alfred Rewane, Chief MKO Abiola and his dear wife, Chief (Mrs) Kudirat Abiola.

“It was also for this reason that I sacrificed my political aspiration and fought against the actualisation of Third Term. Whether during the military or civilian era, I have, no matter how inconvenient, pitched my tent with the people against dictators. During the military regime, it nearly cost me my life and the near decimation of my businesses. In the civilian administration, it had serious adverse implications on my political life. But I have remained undaunted because I was, and still convinced, that the only reason why I am in politics is to work in tandem with other compatriots in the advancement of the wellbeing of the people.

“The 2023 presidential election presented our nation and its people the greatest opportunity for a reset. We had everything going for us: a legal framework in the 2022 Electoral Act and the BVAS technology. The enthusiasm of Nigerians to turn out and in large numbers was an added bonus.

“However, the dreams and aspirations of Nigerians who braced all the challenges to go and cast their votes on Saturday, 25th of February, 2023, were shattered by the conduct of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which failed to live up to expectations. The weekend election was neither free nor fair. Preliminary assessments indicate that it is the worst conducted elections since the return to democratic rule. The manipulation and fraud that attended this election was unprecedented in the history of our nation. I can still not understand why the electoral umpire was in such a hurry to conclude collation and announcement of the result, given the number of complaints of irregularities of bypassing of the BVAS, failure of uploading to the IREV, and unprecedented cancellations and disenfranchisement of millions of voters in breach of the Electoral Act and the commission’s own guidelines. It was indeed a rape of democracy.

“Having consulted with leaders of our party and Nigerians from different walks of life, I have come to the conclusion that the processes and outcome of the Presidential and National Assembly election of last Saturday was grossly flawed in every material particular, and as such must be challenged. This has been attested to by both local and international observers. I want to believe that this was not the legacy that President Muhammadu Buhari had promised. For President Buhari, it is not too late to make amends for the good of our country and the future generations and indeed to assure his legacy.

“This battle to right the wrongs of Saturday is not about me. It is a continuation of my battles to deepen democracy and for a better life for our people. It is about the future of Nigerian youths.

“I know that Nigerians, especially the youth, are traumatised by the developments, but I want to urge them to conduct themselves peacefully. Like I have done over the years, I assure you that I will commit the rest of my life in ensuring that true democracy, which affirms the supremacy of your votes and your will, will take firm footing and guarantee a stable, prosperous and peaceful Nigeria. This is more so as Nigeria represents the hope of Africa and the Black World.”

The duo of Atiku and Peter Obi must have at the back of their minds that no presidential election result declared has ever been upturned by any court in the history of Nigeria’s democracy. It will be a new precedence if by any stroke of luck any of the two is able to make the justices of the Supreme Court change the results already declared.

Saddled with the responsibility of making the right decision as the choice of the next Nigeria’s president shifts to the judiciary are Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, who is the Chief Justice of Nigeria; Musa Datijo Muhammad, Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, Chima Centus Nweze, Amina Augie, Uwani Musa Abba Aji, John Inyang Okoro and Lawal Garba.

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