Anto Lecky means any things to many people in Nigeria.
To the Big Brother Nigeria (BBNaija) fandom, she’s the second-time ex-housemate and free spirit Nigerian born and bred in the United States, coming to the Nigerian biggest reality show to transplant the “whole American thing” (her words).
To start-uppers and entrepreneurs, Anto is a trojan, brand influencer, humanitarian, model, fashionista, brainy and beautiful. Name it, and you find out she’s been there.
To the he-men in Africa’s sports business and management, she’s one of the trend-bucking, gender-defying gate-crasher. (She has two-masters: in business administration and sport management from the North Carolina University)
At 30 this December 9, she remains young at heart—to her many friends.
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I’m turning THIRTY, so we’re going to CAPE VERDE — Thanks to @caboverdeairlines, I’ll be taking their inaugural flight from Nigeria to Cape Verde to celebrate my 30th birthday! I’ll be going on a girls trip with my faves or should I say your faves! I have space for one more lady to join the trip!!! To be the lucky lady to join my Birthday Squad, follow these simple instructions 1. Have a valid international passport 2. Be able to travel from Dec 9-14 3. Post a beautiful image, graphic, or video and tell me what you would love to see and experience while in Cape Verde (the more creative and informative, the better) 4. Be sure to hashtag #AntoTakesCapeVerde #CaboVerdeAirlines and tag @caboverdeairlines and @antolecky 5. Failure to follow these instructions, you are OYO 6. Competition ends Thursday, 5 December by 11:59pm so better be fast! **If you are outside of Lagos, you will have to transport yourself to Lagos for the international flight Can’t wait to travel with you! #AntosDirtyThirty #VerdeThirty #GirlsTrip #YourFavoriteTourGuide
And to Cabo Verde Airlines, the new entrant into Nigeria’s commercial airspace, Anto, on her birthday, is the brand and pioneer flyer to grace its maiden flight from Lagos to Cape Verde, the nation of beautiful Archipelagos.
The two brands; Anto and Cabo Verde Airlines, make a perfect partnership for such destination. In Nigeria, that is.
According to the CEO of the airline, Nigeria has a vibrant travel sector.
“We look forward to servicing our customers and connecting them to Cape Verde and beyond, seamlessly,” said Jens Bjarnason at a recent press conference in Lagos.”
With its Boeing 757-200, the airline will be targeting African entrepreneurs, leisure and business travelers as well as world travelers with its competitive pricing and offers.
The airline, beginning with its maiden flight, will start flying, five times weekly, from Lagos to Fortaleza, Recife, Porto Alegre, Salvador, Boston, Washington DC, Dakar and Lisbon via Sal.
On Cabo Verde aircraft, every flyer is sure to experience a bouquet of flight delight. Its plane boasts 161 seats for the economy class, and 22 for the executive Morabeza premium class.
Its compliance with the European Union and the American safety and Security Standards is one thing that can make its passengers feel at home in the air. It is certified as IOSA Operator, the IATA Operational Safety Audit Program.
Established in 1958, Cabo Verde Airlines has become the flag carrier of the African Island nation. It’s owned by the state of Cape Verde and Loftleidir Cabo Verde, an Icelandic investment firm under the Icelandair Group.
So, Anto has reached out to her gal fans to join her on board Cabo Verde Airline for her 30th birthday on one of Cape Verdes’ virgin islands—for a spine-tingling dunk in its blue, calm water.
To be the lucky lady to join my Birthday Squad, follow these simple instructions below.
1. Have a valid passport.
2. Be able to travel from Dec 9-14
3. Post a beautiful image, graphic, or video and tell me what you would love to see and experience while in Cape Verde (the more creative and informative, the better)
4. Be sure to hashtag #AntoTakesCapeVerde #CaboVerdeAirlines and tag @caboverdeairlines and @antolecky
5. Failure to follow these instructions, you are ‘OYO’.
6. Competition ends Thursday, 5 December by 11:59pm.
** If you are outside of Lagos, you will have to transport yourself to Lagos for the international flight.
Courtney Adeleye supports Black women with $30 million
Beauty mogul Courtney Adeleye has seen a lot of success in entrepreneurship and is paying it forward by investing in the futures of Black women business owners.
The Fund—dubbed The Generational Advantage Fund—was created to empower Black women entrepreneurs and help them lay the foundation for building generational wealth.
The initiative will offer programs and resources surrounding securing funding for business ventures, financial literacy, housing and other areas. Adeleye has contributed $30 million to the fund.
“I made this move to expand the company’s reach and ultimately create more opportunities for my community, so they can get on a path to creating advantage and wealth,” said Adeleye in a joint press release by The Mane Choice and MAV Beauty Brands.
News about the fund comes shortly after Adeleye’s 5-year-old daughter Lily Adeleye became the youngest CEO to have her company’s products sold at Target.
The youngster’s brand Lily Frilly—which was designed to inspire young girls—sells a variety of products including backpacks, dresses, lunchboxes and bows.
Consul-General Ben Okoyen to honor young Nigerian patriots in U.S.
Among Nigerians drawing inspiration from the Green-White-Green flag, Ben Okoyen stands out—not just as a flag-waver, but as a mobilizer and development catalyst.
As the Consulate-General of the Nigeria House in New York, Unites States, Okoyen has the duty to promote Nigeria.
But his devotion to the name Nigeria is religious—and infectious, too.
“It’s a name I’m proud of; the name that brought me here as Consul-General; the name I project any day, any time,” said Okoyen while declaring open a conference by a group of Nigerian-Americans at the Nigerian House in New York.
The youth, brought together by the Nigerian Youth in the Diaspora Engagement Forum (NYDEF), were discussing ways to better represent Nigeria around the world in the event themed Nigeria: Our Brand.
Okoyen told the gathering that every nation strives to earn the respect and trust of others in the comity of nations, a competitive world of equals and super powers.
“We believe that a nation’s brand is its most important asset—if it must be relevant in the comity of nations, he said as he expounded the importance of a name as a brand.
According to him, if anybody says things that are not nice about where they come from, they ultimately go back to face the indignity they have been promoting.
He noted that events happening around the world have always have repercussion back home in individual countries.
“If you promote the positive image of your country and people, then you can earn respect in all your endeavors.”
Describing the youth as the first stakeholders in the branding effort, the consulate-general urged them to tell their own story.
“Know your country. Know your strength. That’s when others believe in you,” he added, with urgency.
A lot of brand stories are there for Nigerians to tell.
“Our food, our dances, our entertainment are our brand. We are peculiar. We are resilient. We are hardworking.”
Okoyen then reminded the youth of Nigeria’s founding fathers, their struggle for nationalism and the nation’s independence from colonial masters, and their expectation from younger generations they left behind.
“They went to other countries, studied, learnt new things, and how things worked. They then came back home to contribute their quotas. That was the beginning of nationalism. And we are beneficiaries of it today,” he said.
He emphasized how important it is for the younger generation to work and build on the foundation they laid.
“We too must use our skills n knowledge to think about giving back to Nigeria.”
The consulate under him is already watching out for the Nigerian youth, especially those in the Diaspora, contributing to the positive image of their fatherland.
“We have a program to honor them. Those contributing positively must be encouraged,” he told BeingNigerian in a separate interview.
He believes this is no time to sit down and complain, and draw back the effort at nation-building.
“We don’t need distraction. We need cooperation and unity. If we believe in d nation to which we belong, that’s a force. And we can move forward.”
Under Okoyen’s leadership, the Nigerian House in New York has been supporting youth initiatives and nation-building program like NYDEF’s.
He encouraged others with similar imitative to come forward and partner with the consulate.
Miss Africa USA hopeful reveals plans for Nigeria, seeks help to win
Porsche Lee Taylor has been contesting in beauty pageantry for 14 years.
As Miss District of Columbia preparing to work it again on the catwalk in the Miss Africa USA contest, Taylor, a Nigerian, knows what she wants.
It’s not fame.
It’s not wealth.
All she wants is a platform to tell Nigerian girls born in the United States to trace their roots back to motherland.
She has done hers. And she can tell the difference the realization makes for African girls blooming in the Diaspora.
“Realizing my Nigerian roots now allows me to launch myself deeper into this pageantry,” she told Africa Independent Television AIT Correspondent, Abolade Ishola in an exclusive interview.
“It allows me to present myself to other girls born in America—that they do have a home. My home is Nigeria.”
More than anything else, Taylor, from this contest, also wants a platform to foster the kind of education that will lead to the development of African women and girls, and, indeed, in Nigeria.
In short, she wants to promote STEM—Science, Technology, Engineering, Math—among African girls and women.
As an entrepreneur, Taylor knows the importance of education in shaping one’s ventures.
“But African girls and women lack education. Which brings social and economic instability,” she said.
That African women and girls languish in poverty and inequality is not strange to her, going by her experience even in the U.S.
According to her, she lost her grandma to dementia; she was roofless for a while; and she lost a relative to gun violence.
“You don’t have to live in Africa to suffer from all those things. But I want to tell people out there they are not alone.”
Like the handful of Nigerians in the Diaspora zealous of making impact back home, Taylor believes this is the time for Africans and Blacks doing great abroad to unite, and give back to the continent.
“Remember you are Africans. We must bring our knowledge back home to make Nigeria better. We really need to start highlighting the beauty of Nigeria,” she reminded those obsessed with negativity about their fatherland.
“Negative words travel faster than positive ones”, she urged those who desire change in Nigeria to first change their negative mindset about the country.
“We are not shying away from the negativity—poverty, corruption, and others. Bring them to the fore. And let’s talk about what we have to do to solve the problem.”
She is ready to be part of the solution.
Which is why she’s asking Nigerian Americans to support her quest to win the crown so she, promising, can go back to Nigeria, and rebuild schools, provide educational resources, and reduce poverty.
Taylor is already getting the backwind she wants.
A California-based model and engineer, Valerie Ehimhen told AIT that her participation in the Miss Africa USA will help her change a lot of things.
“When you see Nigerians doing things like this, it is an easy way for the African culture to penetrate and get out to the Diaspora,” said Ehimhen.
“People can see that the Nigerian culture is more than what the media usually portrays.”