THE SPARK THAT WINS ACCLAIM...RAINOIL CELEBRATES 20 YEARS.

• The startling abilities of Gabriel Ogbechie…

Despite his self-effacing nature, Gabriel Ogbechie, the Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Rainoil, a foremost player in the downstream sector of the oil and gas industry in Nigeria, had reasons to celebrate last week.It was the 20th anniversary of his foray into the oil and gas business, a chequered journey that began with just N300, 000 when he was barely 30. To celebrate the occasion, Rainoil hosted a series of Corporate Social Responsibility activities including a free eye screening tests for public school pupils in Community Primary School, Mafoluku; State Primary School Ewutuntu; and State Primary School, Mafoluku, all in Lagos, among other schools across the country.

The Lagos leg of the programme, which seeks to reach out to pupils from age eight and above in public schools, was conducted by First Contact Eye Clinic Hospital, Ilupeju. Earlier in April, the company had commissioned a 2km road construction in Idumuje-Ugboko, Delta State, while also sponsoring 18-year-old tennis prodigy, Emmanuel Sylvester, to a tennis academy in Spain.The sponsorship is reportedly worth $90,000.00. The anniversary celebration climaxed with an elaborate gala and awards ceremony that all the trappings of a high society event. Ogbechie harnessed his resources and network to put together a befitting evening which also saw some longstanding employees and clients awarded for their steadfast support over the years.

Established out of the unrest of a young man with a well-paying job who said he was tired of receiving salaries, Rainoil has grown to have over branches across Nigeria, about 80 trucks, a fleet of six ships and two 50million litre-capacity oil tank facilities in Oghara, Delta State and Calabar, Cross River State.Surviving the tempestuous oil industry, with its arbitrary policy sommersaults among other crippling challenges, has not been a tea party for this native of Idimuje Ugboko in Delta State. Ogbechie, the fifth of six children, who studied production engineering at the University of Benin, reckons that he has benefited immensely from the grace of God.Ogbechie personifies a classic success story of the man who grew to be titan under the heavy weight of daunting odds, along the torturous path to acclaim.

Asides his manifest depth, Ogbechie presents with zero haughtiness; he is at heart, very private and unpretentiously modest. His towering humility excites cozy presumptions about his attitude which leads many of his acquaintances to believe that he is the type of dude you can sit next to in a plane and start a conversation with on any issue, even if you are just meeting him for the first time.His candid cadences, touch with just the faintest whiff of reticence, amplifying his graceful modesty and ability to navigate the tricky slopes of toil, acclaim and humane ethics
whether in the cutthroat world of commerce or social politics, Ogbechie meanders the fiddly inclines with the grace of a saint.

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About Jane Omarose