The fascinating story of a journalist who fries and sells akara in Maiduguri has gradually spread to the nooks and crannies of the city.
Sunday Williams Omega, a university graduate who fries akara inside the premises of the Nigerian Union of Journalists secretariat in Maiduguri, seems to have surprised many by his action. Selling akara is seen to be the preserve of elderly women in many places around the country.
Despite the many criticisms and challenges the young man is encountering from different quarters, he is not discouraged.
Sunday told Daily Trust Saturday that he was born in Maiduguri. He had both his primary and secondary schools’ education in Maiduguri and later proceeded to the University of Maiduguri where he read Mass Communication.
He started his career with Peace FM in Maiduguri, from there he went to Pride FM Gusau, in Zamfara State, and later Radio Nigeria Equity FM Birnin Kebbi, Kebbi State. He is presently with Kanem Radio, the radio station owned by the University of Maiduguri. Sunday is also a poet, one of the best MCs in the city, just as he engages in other entertainment related activities.
On his ‘controversial’ business venture, Sunday told Daily Trust Saturday that “There are three reasons why I started frying and selling akara. I know who I am and where I am coming from. My mother raised me with the proceeds of this very venture. I grew up seeing her doing this business; in fact, I inherited it from her. It was through akara business that I studied up to the university level.
“I wrote a special poem for akara; because of how it turned my life around and gave me a bright future. Secondly, I started this business in order to attract the attention of my fellow youth to become independent, and not deride small businesses. I want to change the perception of some our graduates about white collar jobs.
“You can see a lot of people like me working to earn a monthly salary, and yet they would not utilize their spare time to think of becoming entrepreneurs, instead they choose to waste their time chatting with friends.
“My third reason for delving into this business is that you cannot depend on a single source of income if you really want to succeed and make money. Imagine if I had started this earlier than now, only God knows how far I would have gone. But I still thank God, it is never too late.”
Sunday said despite the fact that he is a university graduate, he would never underrate any small business.
“At the initial stage, when I uploaded my pictures on social media, it elicited mixed reactions. While some people criticized or insulted me and my business idea, calling me derogatory names, others encouraged me and commended my idea. If our teeming youth would be properly informed by government at various levels on the need to become self-reliant, a lot of people would be meaningfully engaged and be productive. We need to eschew pride and arrogance and face reality. It is more honourable to do something, no matter how little. We should not despise little beginnings,” he said.