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In 44 BC the respected Roman seer and soothsayer Spurinna warned the great Consul and ruler of the Roman Empire Julius Caesar about the “ides of March”. He counselled him not to go out on that day because he had perceived that something terrible would happen. According to the Roman calender the ides of March was the 15th of March.
Caesar treated the prophecy and the warning with riducule and contempt, as is often the case with most men of power, and he chose to ignore it.
According to the Greek historian and essayist Plutarch, on the morning of March 15th, whilst on his way to the Theater at Pompei, Julius Caesar saw Spurinna again and disdainfully whispered into his ear that the ides of March had come, thereby mocking the old man and his prophecy.

The soothsayer smiled and responded by calmly saying,
“Ay Caesar, the ides of March has indeed come but it has not yet ended”.
Later on that same day on his return to Rome and as he entered the great hall and hallowed chambers of the Senate, the great Julius Caesar was stabbed to death by no less than 60 of his most trusted colleagues in the Senate, including Marcus Brutus, his young protegee who hailed from a noble and respected Roman family, who he had supported all his life and who he had virtually adopted as his own son.
History records that such was the courage, strength and fortitude of Caesar that even after dozens of vicious and deep fatal stabs were inflicted all over his ageing body and even as his blood flowed all over the floor of the Senate, he still stood up proud, refusing to bend his knee, refusing to plead for his life and refusing to fall. What a man he was!
It was only after the last of the conspirators, his very own Marcus Brutus, walked up to him slowly, looked him in the eye and plunged his long and sharp dagger deep into the old mans heart that Caesar gave up, yelled in pain and whispered the famous latin words, “Et tu Brute?” meaning “and you too Brutus?”? He ended it by saying “then Caesar falls” after which he fell down and gave up the ghost.
The truth is that he died more of a broken heart as a result of the betrayal of those that he trusted and loved, like Marcus Brutus, than he did from the physical stab wounds that were inflicted on him by the other Senators and his political enemies.
When he saw, felt and suffered Brutus’ betrayal and treachery he gave up hope and lost his will to continue to live.
What a royal tragedy this was! What a waste of human life and greatness! What a gruesome and complicated mess!
What a way for the most powerful man on earth of his time to end his days.
What a way for a gallant and noble son of Rome, a man of valour and a great and irresistible warrior, clothed by the Living God in magnificence, and glory to go down and leave the earthly plain.
This was a valiant and courageous man who had achieved greatness and who was bestowed with awesome power and unprecedented glory by the God of Heaven and the Lord of Hosts.
This was a man who went to the British Isles, who conquered and bound their ruling spirit Brittania and who proudly proclaimed those famous Latin words, “veni, vedi, vici”, meaning “I came, I saw, I conquered”.
This was a man who turned Egypt into a vassal state, who overwhelmed the Greeks, who conquered Europe, who mastered the Middle East, who ruled the entire civilised world and who bedded and tamed the great African Queen Cleopatra.
Yet this was also a man who was also deeply flawed: an unforgiving man who could not reign in his immeasurable and profound sense of narcissism, who could not control his  obsession with power and desire to dominate others and who could not shed his sense of pride, self-importance and vanity.
This was an arrogant man who listened to no-one, who took pleasure in being worshipped, who loved to be revered, who relentlessly persecuted his enemies, who showed cruelty  to his detractors, who scorned his three wives, who had contempt for his clerics, who mocked the sacred prophecies and who defied the Living God and the Ancient of Days.
Predictably and sadly it all eventually caught up with him and, in the end, he was taken dispatched from this world in the most agonising and pitiful way, wallowing in a pool of his own blood, slaughtered, not by his traditional and known enemies, but rather by his own political associates, loved ones and erstwhile friends.
If Caesar had listened to his youngest wife, the beautiful Calpurnia, that ill-fated morning and not stepped out he would not have been murdered and Roman, nay world, history would have been very different.
If he had listened to Spurinna, the great seer and soothsayer, who the God of Heaven had used to speak to him and if he had shown humility and heeded the seer’s warning about the ides of March, Caesar would have lived to finish the work that he started and to fulfil his vision.
If he had not become the victim of his own vanity and obsessions and if he had not turned from being a great and much-loved war general and hero into a beastly and dictatorial bully he would  not have turned the hearts of the Senate against all that he stood for, he would not have provoked the wrath of God and he would not have kindled and stoked the bitterness, hatred and enmity of even his most trusted loved ones and men like Marcus Brutus.
If he had not sought to destroy all his enemies with a bitter vengeance and if he had not killed, incarcerated, jailed and tortured the innocent and those that had done no wrong he would have attracted the mercies of God and the Lord would have protected him from his relentless and implacable enemies.
If he had not abused power, brought sorrow, hardship and pain to the people, played God and sought to impose his wicked will over the nation he would have lived longer and he would have died peacefully in his bed many years later as a fulfilled and happy old man.
If he had not allowed himself to be transformed  from being a great warrior and war hero who feared and honored God, who believed in justice, equity, fairness and the rule of law, who upheld the sanctity and integrity of the republic and who defended the constitution and the sacredness of the Senate into a mean-spirited, power-hungry, obsessive and brutal tyrant he would have lived for much longer.
If he had not attempted to transform himself from being an accommodating Consul and the humble leader of the Republic of Rome into a life-long dictator and all-powerful emperor who could tolerate no criticism, who would brook no opposition and who would kill, brutalise and demonize his enemies, lock up and humiliate his critics and seek to destroy the destiny and very essence of his nation, he would have lived for much longer.
If he had not used his brutal army to murder young and defenceless activists, opposition figures and protestors or his secret police to torture innocent people and lock them up all over the country without any recourse to the law or respect for their civil liberties, human rights or the courts, he would have lived for much longer.
If he had not attacked and sought to blackmail,  humiliate and intimidate the Judiciary and if he had not attempted to politicise, manipulate and corrupt the administration of justice in his nation he would have lived for much longer.
If he had not treated the opposition with disdain and contempt and if he had not sought to decimate and destroy their ranks by foul means and the dishonorable dispatch, planting and deployment of a bunch of merciless, crooked and treacherous blacklegs, traitors, moles, gangsters, saboteurs and murderers in their ranks he would have lived for much longer.
I could go on and on. When men play God all manner of tragedies stalk them and they never end well. That is the lesson of history and that is what we are seeing unfolding in Nigeria today.

Persecution and the abuse of power always attracts a heavy price for those who indulge in it: this is especially so when they hate God’s children and His anointed and they persecute the Church and His clerics.  (TO BE CONTINUED).

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Business

Baba Adinni and Iya Adinni: Harmony Gardens Chairman and Wife Inducted into Spiritual Roles

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In a momentous occasion of spiritual significance and community recognition, the Chairman of Harmony Gardens and Estates Development LTD, Hon. Dr. Saheed Audullahi Mosadoluwa, popularly known as Mr. Ibile, and his wife, Hadjia Aishat Adebimpe, were recently installed with revered titles at an event hosted by the Al-Irshad Islamic Foundation.

 

Hon Saheed Mosadoluwa Ibile inaugurated a multi-billion naira ultra-modern Central Mosque at Ibeju-Lekki immidiately after he got recognized by the West Africa Islamic Council as the AL Mujaddid in Rabbat, Morocco.

 

According to popular Muslim tradition, the term refers to an individual who emerges at the turn of each century in the Islamic calendar to rejuvenate Islam, purging it of extraneous elements and restoring it to its original purity. In contemporary times, a mujaddid is regarded as the preeminent Muslim figure of a century.

 

The concept of Mujaddid is based on a hadith (a saying of Islamic prophet Muhammad), recorded by Abu Dawood, narrated by Abu Hurairah who mentioned that Muhammad said:

 

Allah will raise Mujaddid for this community at the end of every 100 years the one who will renovate its religion for it.

 

Recall that in a grand ceremony attended by distinguished personalities and spiritual leaders, Hon Saheed Audullahi Mosadoluwa, Chairman and CEO of Harmony Gardens and Estates Development LTD, officially commissioned and handed over a state-of-the-art central mosque in Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos State, on Friday, January 19th, 2024.

 

The auspicious event witnessed the presence of esteemed religious leaders, including Sheik Semiu .A. Opeloyeru, The Grand Chief Imam and General President of the League of Imam and Alfa in Ibeju-Lekki L.G.A. The ceremony commenced with the arrival of Sheik Semiu .A. Opeloyeru, setting the tone for a day of spiritual significance and community celebration.

 

Representing the executive governor of Lagos State, His Excellency Babajide Sanwoolu, was Hon. Ahmed Abdulai Jembe, the Special Adviser on Islamic Affairs to the governor, graced the ceremony. The Onibeju in attendance emphasizing the significance of the event in the cultural and traditional context.

 

The event saw the attendance of various traditional rulers, highlighting the communal and inclusive nature of the mosque inauguration. Notably, the newly appointed Lagos NURTW Chairman, Mustapha Sego, drew attention as his presence added an extra layer of recognition to the occasion.

 

However, the prestigious ceremony, held at Monarch Hall in Osapa London Lekki, Lagos State, saw Hon. Dr. Saheed Audullahi Mosadoluwa bestowed with the title of Baba Adinni, signifying a revered position within the religious community. His wife, Hadjia Aishat Adebimpe, was similarly honored as Iya Adinni, a title of great respect and responsibility.

 

The Al-Irshad Islamic Foundation, under the guidance of its founder Sheik Rasheed Adeleke, who is also the owner of Al-Irshad Travel and Tours, organized the event as a Pre-Ramadan lecture, award ceremony, and Turbaning ceremony. The atmosphere was filled with spiritual fervor and communal joy as community members gathered to witness the momentous occasion.

 

Notably, Abu Abel and other prominent figures, was also present at the event, adding to the significance of the gathering. The ceremony, held on Sunday, February 25th, 2024, brought together individuals from diverse backgrounds to celebrate the exemplary contributions of Hon. Dr. Saheed Audullahi Mosadoluwa and his wife to both the community and the Islamic faith.

 

The Turbaning ceremony, a traditional rite of passage within the Islamic community, symbolizes a deep connection with cultural heritage and spiritual leadership. The titles of Baba Adinni and Iya Adinni carry great responsibilities, signifying the honorees’ commitment to serving the community and upholding the values of the Islamic faith.

 

As the community celebrates this significant event, the installation of Hon. Dr. Saheed Audullahi Mosadoluwa and Hadjia Aishat Adebimpe as Baba Adinni and Iya Adinni reflects their exemplary leadership and commitment to the principles of Harmony Gardens and Estate Development LTD. The event serves as a beacon of unity, spirituality, and communal recognition within the Osapa London in Lekki community.

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Business

Squad Powers OmniPay’s Trade Business to Simplify Payments for FMCG Industry

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In a strategic move aimed at furthering its mission to empower African traders with the necessary payment solutions for thriving in the digital era, Squad, a fintech subsidiary of Guaranty Trust Holding Company Plc (GTCO), offering comprehensive payment and e-commerce solutions for businesses, has entered a partnership with OmniPay, a subsidiary of OmniRetail Inc.

 

This collaboration has currently benefited more than 65,000 stakeholders, which include retailers, distributors, and manufacturers through improved payment and collection methods using Squad’s Virtual Bank Account without incurring any charges. Additionally, they have gained more accessible and affordable working capital to procure goods on credit for their businesses, contributing to the daily transaction volume exceeding N3 billion, and this figure continues to grow.

 

Adeyemi Atanda, the Chief Marketing Officer, Squad, shared insights on the partnership’s significance, emphasizing, “At Squad, our mission revolves around providing African businesses with the right solutions for effortless payment processes, available at their convenience. We understand the pivotal role small businesses play in our economy. Through strategic alliances like this, we aim to empower even more merchants by granting them access to rapid, user-friendly, and dependable payment solutions that optimize their business operations and, in turn, boost their revenue.”

 

Deepankar Rustagi, CEO of OmniRetail stated, “As we join forces with Squad, we are driven by our shared vision of transforming the digital payment landscape for African businesses. With OmniPay, businesses will gain improved payment methods with zero transfer fees, while retailers and distributors will have easier access to OmniPay’s BNPL (Buy Now Pay Later) solution. This partnership aims to empower businesses, streamline payment processes, and enhance record-keeping accuracy through automated reconciliation for orders. This partnership reinforces OmniRetail’s commitment to innovation and financial inclusion.”

 

About Squad

 

Squad is a complete payment solution that is reliable, secure, and affordable, making receiving in-person and online payments simple and convenient.

 

Our goal is to support SMEs, micro-merchants, large corporations, and other fintechs (Tech Stars) with the tools they need to thrive in an evolving digital economy and expand beyond their current market reach.

 

Squad’s current products and service offerings include SquadPOS, Squad Payment Links, Squad Virtual Accounts, USSD, and E-Commerce Storefront.

 

Find out more at www.squadco.com.

 

About OmniPay

 

OmniPay, a subsidiary of OmniRetail Inc., is a company with a mission to simplify payments in Nigeria and provide working capital to trade businesses. OmniPay provides an API-based wallet built to simplify trade payments.

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