The pioneer managing director of Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company (SNEPCO) Olufemi Lalude has been honoured with the 2020 leadership award by Akinjide Adeosun Foundation (AAF).
This comes decades after Lalude, an engineer, rejected a $6 million bribe offer, the foundation said in a statement on Wednesday.
The award ‘Leadership in Integrity’ was conferred on the 81-year-old during the AAF 5th annual colloquium themed ‘Integrity – A Sine Qua Non to Building a Prosperous Nation’.
Speaking at the event which held virtually, AAF’s founder Akinjide Adeosun said the recognition of Lalude was is in line with the core mandate of the foundation.
“Integrity is an essential building block to building a prosperous nation. Truthfulness, honesty, respect for people, hard work and humility are traits of Integrity,” he said.
“Many years ago, our awardee, Papa Olufemi Lalude, the first managing director of the Shell Nigeria Exploration & production Company SNEPCO was offered a bribe of $6 million.
“The organisation that offered him the bribe moved against him. However, he refused to be cowed and stood his ground.
“He was sued with his employer but he triumphed. Lalude is a man of integrity, a rarity in our clime dwarfed by corruption and greed.
“Today, Papa at 81 is living a peaceful, joyous and fulfilled contented life.”
He added: “We are celebrating him today. He began his career with integrity as his legacy in mind. We have many good people in Nigeria. We must celebrate them to dwarf the bad publicity the few bad people is giving our nation.”
In his presentation, Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde said Nigeria would continue to find it difficult to grow without putting structures in place to strengthen openness, truthfulness and transparency in leadership.