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Monday, May 23, 2016

Olatoyan's inspirational story featured on CNN

CNN report on world's best dressed squeegee man, showing dignity in labour
I cherish the never-say-die attitude youths in the country exhibit, especially during this time that the challenge of unemployment is biting so hard. It is quite uplifting to read stories of young men and woman who defy the odds to overcome the menace of joblessness, instead of taking to the life of crimes. One of such persons is Abdulahi Olatoyan, a university dropout, whose story recently went viral on the social media after it was featured on CNN. He adopted creativity and unwavering determination to defeat the common enemy facing many a Nigerian youth today.

Find the details of Olatoyan's inspirational story as it appeared on CNN African Voices after the cut...

In Congo, Sapeurs (the Society of tastemakers and elegant people), are known for their love of luxury tailoring even while performing the most mundane of tasks. But one car windscreen cleaner in Nigeria's Abeokuta is competing for this title.

Abdulahi Olatoyan, who is a university dropout in his early thirties, turned to the streets to make a living and save enough money to start his own business.

"I didn't want to be wandering the streets doing nothing" he explains, adding he wanted to make sure people knew he was serious about his work.

"He is the first suited windscreen cleaner I have ever seen", says photographer Daniel Sync, who decided to take photos. "We need more innovative citizens like Abdulahi in Nigeria", he added.

Sync spotted the cleaner on his way to work and rushed to the office to pick up his camera. The photographs have since gone viral - with Olatoyan being offered a job at Nigerian clothing line OUCH.

The label's designer Uche Nnaji posted on Instagram that Olatoyan could come work at his company, and listed seven reasons why he deserved the job. He asked his 18,000 followers to help track down the elegant squeegee man.

Olatoyan has now been offered a position as 'style doctor' at the menswear brand: "I have a team of young people that I call style doctors," says Nnaji, "when I saw him I thought this person is someone that likes looking good and can style others".

"I saw attitude in him and thought if this man is doing this just to go and wash cars, he is someone that will work with a different mindset even if he's doing the least popular job in the company" he added.

Olatoyan will soon begin offering his own distinctive opinions on style and taste to customers.

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  1. Hi Obinna, the story of Olatoyan is an amazing one. His story is a proof of this popular saying that NO FATE, NO CHANCE, NO DESTINY CAN HINDER OR CIRCUMVENT THE RESOLVE OF A DETERMINED SOUL. If we won't give up and keep trying , definitely one day opportunity will show up where we least expect. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Hmm...You're absolutely right, Taiwo. Opportunity favours those who know not what it means to give up. I so much appreciate your thought on this.