19th Gathering of Africa’s Best Awards goes to Manchester on Jan. 27

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By Tolu Baruwa – The second leg of the annual network of top Africans and friends of Africans from the continent and the Diaspora will hold at the Double Tree by Hilton Hotel Manchester, on Saturday 27 January 2018. The very successful first leg of the 19th annual Gathering of Africa’s Best (GAB ) Awards  2017 was held on Sunday, 3rd December in London.

Hon. Alderman Erelu Lola Ayonrinde – bagged GAB Special Recognition Awards for Community Development flanked by Mr Femi Okutubo and wife Lola Okutubo.

In her Goodwill message, Prime Minister Theresa May, stated that “these awards are an opportunity for us all to recognise the incredible achievements of successful African men and women across sectors…’ This merely proves the expansion of African talents and how they are finally being pushed into the spotlight.

Organised by the CEO of Trumpet Media Group, Mr Femi Okutubo, African people in the media, financial services, business, retail and other walks of life were celebrated.

It was hosted by the phenomenal Gloria Ade and the outstanding event compere, MC Mark. The event had such a burst of energy, fuelled with comedy that surrounded the room.

Held at the Hilton Hotel in Canary Wharf, the guests were served with an exceptional African cuisine consisting of the famous jollof rice, curry goat stew and assorted meats – literally Africa’s best!

The talents presented at this glorious event, were overwhelming for all who attended. Particular favourites were: Deoba Authentic, Em Prince, Angel SBL, Sophy-Yah and the Brown Dancers, who brought such vibrancy to the event, lifting up everyone’s spirits as they entertained the audience. Through these performances, it was insightful to witness the African culture progressively being recognised by the nation worldwide.

After the main event, the winners were interviewed, creating a celebrative atmosphere for all.

Particularly outstanding was, Reverend Mother Esther Abimbola Ajayi, an accomplished Christian leader, Philanthropist and Author with a real passion for the power of prayer and giving as foundational pillars in her life. She was able to radiate her surroundings, giving off a positive energy that was needed in the place.

Notable, was Isaiah S McAye who has filmed and worked with the BBC as a Freelancer and travelled as far as Bangkok in Thailand, Florida, New York City, and Nigeria, just to name a few. Working for James Bonds’ ‘Skyfall’, he has also worked on music films in Nigeria, which have gone on to feature on TV stations like Soundcity TV, MTV Africa and Hip-hop TV Nigeria.




Fourteen sons, daughters and friends of Africa won the GAB Award for Excellence, while three others bagged GAB Special Recognition Awards.

The recipients are:

Award for Excellence

Bukola Olofinjana – Community Development

Blessing Olubanjo – Gospel Music

Isaiah S McAye – Media

Tommy Kallon – Faith

Jamil Eniola – Community Development

Titilola Aboyade-Cole – Media

Mohammed Aslam Khan Lodhi – Elderly Care

Pastor Michael Olufemi Adekoya – Housing Advocacy

Princess Hannah Adedoyin Afolabi – Law

Ms Naeema Ahmed – Energy

Lady Oluyemi Akinola – Media

Michelle O Akintoye – Youth Empowerment

Olutunde Lalude – Health

Lydia Tett Olett – Community Development

Special Recognition Award

Rev. Esther Abimbola Ajayi – Philanthropy

Hon. Alderman Erelu Lola Ayonrinde – Community Development

Pastor Alfred Oladipo Jegede – Faith

The GAB Awards was founded in 1999 to reward excellence among Africans and Friends of Africa in the Diaspora and on the Continent of Africa.

As the New Year comes near, it is vital to continue to celebrate the achievements of Africans – not just on days of events.

The Manchester edition of the 19th GAB Awards holds on Saturday January 27 2018 at the Double Tree by Hilton Hotel, Manchester – Piccadilly One, Piccadilly Place, 1 Auburn Street, Manchester M1 3DG. Time 5.30pm – 11pm. 

Tickets are available at GABAwardsManchester.eventbrite.com

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Photo credit: Adesons Photograph

Revd. Mother Esther Ajayi bagged GAB Special Recognition Awards for Philanthropy. Award presented by HRM Oba Babatunde Ogunlaja JP, Aladesonyin of Odo-Nofirija Kingdom, Lagos State and Member, Lagos State Council of Obas.

Michelle O Akintoye (middle) received the GAB Award for Excellence (Youth Empowerment)
Oluyemi Akinola, Presenter and Producer of ‘People and Places’, Tourism and Lifestyle
(Middle) – received the GAB Award for Excellence in Media
Ms Naeema Ahmed received the GAB Award for Excellence in Energy from Dr. Alistair Soyode.
Dr. Dayo Olomu presents Olutunde Lalude (left) GAB Award for Excellence (Health)
Cllr. Ade Aminu and wife present GAB Award for Excellence to Jamil Eniola (Middle) for Community Development
Cllr. Sunny Lambe presents GAB Award for Excellence to Pastor Michael Olufemi
Adekoya (right) for Housing Advocacy
Titilola Aboyade-Cole – (Middle) received the GAB Award for Excellence in Media
Princess Deun Solarin and Princess OluwaToyin Onagoruwa present Tommy Kallon – GAB Award for Excellence (Faith)
Michael Ajayi of Love of Christ Generation Church (C& S) flanked by Prince Mike Abiola and wife Princess Golda John Abiola
Comperes: Gloria Ade and MC Mark
Mr & Mrs Olofinjana

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