Oluwaseyi Abiodun Makinde is a Nigerian businessman, politician and philanthropist from Ibadan, Oyo State. He is a seasoned engineer and the Group Managing Director of Makon Group Nigeria Limited, which he founded. He has created over 5,000 jobs for Oyo State indigenes through his Youth Empowerment programmes initiated twelve years ago. Seyi remains committed to helping Oyo State’s private sector create more job opportunities. He is active in politics and is contesting to become the governor of Oyo State in 2019 on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Early Life and Education.
Seyi Makinde was born at Catholic Hospital Oluyoro, Ibadan, Oyo State to late Pa Olatubosun Makinde, a teacher who later trained as an accountant, and Madam Abigail Makinde, a telephone operator in the civil service, of Aigbofa Compound, Oja’ba Ibadan, Oyo State.
He attended St. Michael’s Primary School, Yemetu in Ibadan and Bishop Phillips Academy, Iwo Road Ibadan. He also attended the University of Lagos, Akoka Yaba, Lagos and graduated with a B.Sc. (Hons) degree in Electrical Engineering in 1990. He was trained in Industrial Control Services in Houston, Texas in 1998; and Development of Analytical Competence at Lagos Business School (now Pan African University) in 1999. He studied Fundamentals of Crude Sampling at Jiskoot Auto Control Training Centre, Kent England in 2002, and Understanding and Solving Complex Business Problems at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA in 2005.
Professional Career and Business:
Seyi worked for Shell Petroleum Development Company for two years from 1990 to 1992 as a pupil engineer. Thereafter, he worked for Rebold International Limited as a Field Engineer and Assistant Manager (Eket operations) from 1992-1997 where he designed, installed, supervised and commissioned several instrumentation projects. He is a subject matter expert in fluid and gas metering with special bias for automation and control.
In 1997, Seyi set up his private business, Makon Engineering and Technical Services Limited (METS). He transformed his infant company into a multi-million-dollar business entity now known as Makon Group with four subsidiaries in Nigeria, South Africa and United States of America. METS started operations “as an instrumentation, Automation and Control Systems Company and has through the years evolved as a leader in the provision of Engineering, Procurement, Installation/Construction, Commissioning, Operation and Maintenance with distinctive competences in the design and the execution of large scale Onshore, Offshore in the Oil & Gas and Energy Market.”
He is a member of several national and international professional bodies notably; Nigeria Society of Engineers (NSE); Council For Regulations of Engineers in Nigeria (COREN); Oil and Gas Design Engineers of Nigeria (OGDEN); Instrument Society of America (ISA); Institute of Measurement and Control UK; America Measurement Institute (AMI) Sub Committee on Measurement Quality.
Seyi has made a lot of effort to transform Oyo State by supporting capable hands with technocratic and political experience to vie for electoral offices. In 2003, he was part of a think tank, Fortune Group which provided some intellectual backing for the gubernatorial campaign of Senator Rashidi Ladoja. He states that “the good ones amongst us will lose the moral right to ask questions if politics is left to the old system which has brought us to the stagnancy and abject poverty that permeates all the spheres of our nation.”
He is committed to making the most of his aptitude on the issues of prudent financial management, social justice, peace building, conflict resolution, community cohesion, and disaster and risk management.
Seyi knows that Oyo State has been underachieving with myriad issues affecting the people such as poverty, unemployment, lack of electricity, lack of potable water, inability to access health services, shortage of food, lack of affordable housing and inadequate infrastructural development. With a team of experts, he has come up with solutions which when implemented, will address these issues.
With a successful track record of leadership in cross-functional teams, Seyi’s passion to serve his people and offer his candidature for the position of Oyo State Governor is driven by the plight of the people that are currently belittled by poor leadership and mismanagement of state resources.
Seyi embarked on philanthropy in order to meet the needs of people and has faithfully and consistently kept his promise to commit his resources both financial and material to meet peoples’ needs in his community and state. He has credited the generosity and extensive philanthropy of his father as a major influence in shaping his selfless character.
In 2000, Seyi visited his alma mater, Bishop Philips Academy, Ibadan which was in a state of disrepair with his former classroom dilapidated beyond recognition. He immediately offered to rebuild the classroom marking the beginning of his philanthropic work in Oyo State. He also equipped the school with information and communication technology tools such as computers and installed a 5 KVA generator to power them in 2001.
Other philanthropic works embarked on by Seyi include;
- Construction of boreholes to various communities in Oyo State, such as Ansarudeen Mosque Iseyin LGA, Ojagbo Junction Ibadan North-East LGA, Aigbofa Compound, Oja’ba Ibadan, Ibadan South-East LGA, Ogbere near Agugu, Ibadan, Ibadan North-East LGA, Ajia Village Ibadan, Anko Eruwa in Ibarapa East LGA, from 2006-2016.
- Sponsorship of the construction of website for the Federation of Ibadan Students Union and the construction of programmable logic control (PLC) laboratory for his Alma Mata, the University of Lagos, Department of Electrical & Electronics Engineering in 2011.
- Construction of gas-powered turbine to generate independent power/electricity at Ajia Town in Ibadan, commissioned on September 17, 2011.
- Construction of block of classrooms for Bishop Oyebode Memorial Primary School; Agugu in 2012.
- Construction of blocks of classrooms at BOMAC Primary School Oremeji Agugu, Ibadan in 2012.
- Provision of relief materials to fire disaster victims in Ibadan in 2013.
- Renovation of Ibadan House, Ibadan in Ibadan North LGA in 2014.
- Donation of relief materials to some victims of flood and rain storm across Oyo State in 2014.
- Provision of electricity transformers to various communities in Oyo State, at Soka an area in Oluyole LGA, Olode village and Akobo Ojurin Lagelu LGA, Elere-Eleshinmeta, Apata, Ibadan South-West LGA, Idi-orogbo, Igangan Town Hall, Ibarapa North from 2014 to 2017.
- The construction of the Olatunbosun Makinde Media and Agro Allied Hall in the Ajia Village, Ona-Ara LGA.
- Scholarships to outstanding students from numerous secondary schools across Oyo State, particularly Bishop Philip Academy, Ibadan.
- Procurement of medical equipment and dispensing of medications to the aged.
- Sponsorship of medical team from United States of America to Nigeria to carry out free medical procedures.
- Annual sponsorship of pilgrims to the Holy Land of Mecca, Saudi Arabia and Jerusalem, Isreal.
- Distribution of teaching and writing materials to the pupils of primary and secondary schools in Oyo State.
- Construction of Science Laboratory for the PEN Junior School Iyaganku, Ibadan.
- Installation of Street Light at Bayo Oyeleke Street, Ikolaba Ibadan with 10 KVA Generator.
- 1,500 students drawn from across the tertiary institutions in the country have also benefited from Seyi Makinde’s scholarship awards.
- Donation of N1 million to UCH Indigent Patients Fund.
- Donation of N5 million to support LAUTECH fund raising effort in 2017.
- Donation of N50 Million for 2017/2018 Seyi Makinde Bursary Scheme Award to 2,500 tertiary institution students.
- Donation of multi-million naira project an e-library to his alma mater- Bishop Phillips Academy, Iwo Road, Ibadan.
- Sponsorship of Omituntun Foundation Mega Praise Event for Christians.
- Sponsorship of Omituntun Annual Ramadan Lecture for Muslims.
- Donation of golf kits to Tiger Golf Club Odogbo Cantoment, Ibadan
- Sponsorship of Seyi Makinde’s ‘Women’s Support Golf Tournament.’
- Adoption of seven children with full scholarship up to tertiary education level.
Seyi has created several jobs for Oyo State indigenes through his Youth Empowerment programmes initiated in 2006 and he remains committed to helping Oyo State’s private sector create 250,000 jobs by 2022.
Awards and Recognitions:
- Humanitarian Ambassador Award, Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Ibadan – 2014.
- Nigerian Union of Journalists (Oyo State Council)-Laudable Contribution to Humanity Merit Award.
- National Association of Oke-Ogun Students (Ibadan)-Merit Award.
- Fiditi Grammar School (Oyo State)-Old Student Merit Award in appreciation to the commitment, dedication and service to the association and humanity.
- Junior Chamber International (JCI) University of Calabar Chapter -Entrepreneurial Excellence Award.
- Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (Oyo State Chapter)-Gold Merit Award for immense and invaluable contribution to sports development.
- Nigerian Association of Social Workers Merit Awards (Oyo State Chapter)-Philanthropic gestures and contribution to Social Care Delivery Services.
- CCII National Merit Award.
- Maryhill Convent School, Ibadan-Academic Development Merit award
- Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (Ibadan) – awarded Seyi “Astute Politician of the Year 2018” for his resilience with which he had continued to assist the less privileged in the society.
- CCII 2018 Most Patriotic Ibadan Indigene Award
Seyi is well respected by all due to his openness and integrity. He is known to keep his word. He is naturally pleasant and warm; always polite and considerate. He is attentive to all, irrespective of their age or status, and often talks to both young and elderly people in a respectful manner.
As electorates are yearning for a change in Oyo state, they want a new-breed politician who is compassionate and truly understands their plight; these attributes can be found in Seyi Makinde.
He is committed to bridging the gap between the poor and the rich by investing in infrastructural development within the community. He lives in Ibadan, Oyo State and is married to Tamunominini with whom he has three children.