The Ooni of Ife, His Royal Highness (HRH) Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi on Sunday flagged off the take off of the much-anticipated the 1st African to Fly Solo Round the World on a single engine aircraft, thus become part of the history to change the narrative on Nigeria.
The project powered by Transcend Project kicked off Sunday 26 June 2016 some 3 days later than the scheduled date of Thursday 23rd of June.
Transcend pilot Ademilola Odujinrin who incubated the incredible dream to be the 1st African to Fly Solo Round the World on a single engine aircraft with Transcend project is making that dream a reality.
The ground breaking event was attended by members of Nigeria press in the US, Nigerians from all parts of the United States and many other well-wishers.
Transcend Project Director, Mr Ladi Ani-Mumuney thanked the people of Nigeria both at home and in the diaspora.
“We have been encouraged and motivated by the goodwill messages from Nigerians both at home and in the diaspora”. He talked about the long and arduous efforts characterized by challenges of funding and delays, He expressed how proud he was that the flight was finally taking off and how exciting it is that the first African to achieve this challenge which had only been achieved by only 114 people in the world will be achieved by Nigeria.”
This will surely change the Nigerian perception, said Mr Ani-mumuney, “it is time for the world to realize that there is more to Africa and in particular Nigerians than “stomach politics’ “We hope this project will inspire generations of young to follow their dreams like Lola and never give up irrespective of the many hurdles they might meet along the way”
Changing the flight plan
The team has been working very hard to achieve this historic feat! The primary objective has been for Nigeria to produce the First African to pilot a single engine aircraft solo round the World and we are remain determined to making this a reality.
A round the world solo flight involves overcoming many challenges and team Transcend is no exception. Taking off from Nigeria compounds these logistical and financial quandaries, thus amplifying the entire project cost, this directly hindered the project timeline.
The primary cause of these delays has been the lack of sufficient funds which are critical to propelling the project forward to its final stage of flying round the world.
The team is cognizant of the current economic climate in Nigeria which is impacting everyone in the country including corporate organizations, philanthropist and the general business and professional landscape.
This forced the team to review their original plans while staying focused on the primary objective. After much deliberation and soul-searching, Team Transcend had to make the difficult decision for the project to kick off from Washington DC in the United States of America, where the aircraft is currently in the housed, thus greatly reduces the project cost dramatically and thereby enabling them to achieve their ultimate goal.
Trancend Project Head of Marketing and Project Manager, Ms Ireti Bakare-Yusuf expressed a big thank-you to the two seed sponsors namely the Tolaram Group and Translynx Nigeria Ltd for their unshaking belief and invaluable support to our cause.
Transcend Pilot and 1st African to circumnavigate the world – Ademilola Odujinrin, aka ‘The fall guy’ in an emotional voice, said he appreciated the support of the people of Nigeria so far.
‘We invite you to stay and unite with us on this journey as we strive to change the Nigerian narrative and elevate our country on the global stage. I hope I can count on your continued support and interest as this project belongs to all of Nigeria, and together, we will enjoy the collective success and celebrate national pride when I complete this project. The project has taken on a global interest, so its time to show the world there is more to us as a nation than they expect. “
“Knowing that I am representing my country is certainly one of the main motivations that will keep me going during this solo expedition. I want to say a special thank-you to my parents for their unrelenting support, to my wife and my children for all the sacrifices that they have endured with me in the last 3years leading up to this day. A particularly special thank-you to Team Transcend for not giving up and for our collective fortitude to get the job done! This is the day the Lord has made and I give all Glory to Him for making this dream a reality!”