China Trip, An Eye Opener With Positive Impacts On Me – Ogunfodunrin

Kunle Adelabu

Mr Oladele Ogunfodunrin, popularly known and called ‘Omoba Alausa’, a thinker, Public Affairs Analyst, Strategist and one of the few professional alumni of the Rep. Babajimi Benson’s capacity building to the Peoples’ Republic of China, has said that the trip was an eye-opener for him, with great impacts on his life.

Ogunfodunrin attended a two – week seminar in China on ‘Standardization Cooperation of the Public Health between China and African Countries’, which is part of the Chinese government’s ‘Belt and Road’ Initiative for cooperation and development with developing countries.
The impactful trip was facilitated by the representative of the Ikorodu Federal Constituency, Rep. Babajimi Benson.

Ogunfodunrin has been an active participant in the health sector in the last 14 years, thus, the China trip availed him a relevant exposure in his professional calling.

The Hon. Benson’s capacity building alumni, who was in Sichuan Province, Chengdu in China between April and May 2024, was a guest on THE IMPACT platform recently where he shared his experience.

Ogunfodunrin with his coordinator,, Mrs Eunice from AIBO, ie Academy For International Business Officials

He was the only Nigerian among 40 other participants lodged at the prestigious Xincheng Holiday Hotel. The participants breakdown is as follows: 22 Ethiopians, 4 Liberians, 5 Sierra Leoneans, 2 Kenyans, 4 South Sudanese and 2 African Union Staff and one Nigerian.

The three – term federal lawmaker facilitated the exchange programme for youth leaders, community developers and professionals

“The whole process was not just seamless, less stressful, itch-free, and all-expense paid, it was also a 5-star treatment, painstakingly planned, well – thoughtout, deliberate, with no room for error, as Hon. Babajimi Benson made sure that everything was perfect from the initial stage to the very end covering every detail”, he said.

“The trip was an eye-opener for me going to the People’s Republic of China, for the very first time. The long travel time; the experience of meeting other African brothers and sisters from other parts of the continent; the change in the time zone; the restrictions on our regular social media handle; the dynamic food; the people; the environment; 24 hours power supply round the clock, a far cry from where I was coming from.

Speaking on the lessons from the training, Ogunfodunrin said that Nigeria, especially his immediate community, has a whole lot to learn from the Chinese, from the lowest strata of the heath sector to the highest.

At the bio – city in Chengdu, one of the largest medical equipment manufacturing city’s in China.

“Going by the theme of the seminar, it’s about standard in the public health sector and I believe that starting from our primary health care centre to our General Hospital which is the secondary stage of our health care services, some levels of international best practices need to be imbibed, just like we continue to ask for SOP, i.e Standard Operating Procedures, in all departments in the hospitals”, he said.

“From the health management information services to the Nurses, the Doctors, through the laboratory, and then finally to the pharmaceutical department, not leaving out the administrative angle in the area of policy formulation and implementation”, he added.

Speaking more about China and its development which he said is fascinating, Oginfodunrin said that the trip impacted his body, soul and entire body.

“It was a tale of two cities you want to say. The level of intelligence of the facilitators, presenters and their level of coordination and capacity; their availability, accessibility, ability to relate well, except for the language barrier, it was all good and an awesome experience which cannot be quantified”, he said.

“To be candid, this experience has a positive impact on my spirit, soul, and body, because it was a clean, calm, cool, orderly environment, with structure and government. The level of infrastructure, science, and technology are out of this world. Almost everything is automated.

“I think majorly, the policy formulation and implementation should be a continous thing with regular reviews every two years in order to allow room for improvement”, he said.

Presentation of certificates to participants at the closing ceremony

Speaking on the Chinese foods which is usually major concerns for those travelling to the country for the first time, the health professional said that he found the food healthy.

“I didn’t believe I could eat their food until I started giving it a try, having taken garri, spiced chicken, ‘suya’ pepper and ‘Kuli kuli’ along when I was leaving so as to sustain my ‘9ja’ (Nigeria) taste bud. However, I later found out that not only is the Chinese food interesting, it’s also healthy. The trip was actually a total package and very fulfilling.

In his advice to other potential participants, Ogunfodunrin said that the trip offers a lifetime experience which they must grab and maximize to its fullest.

“As a leading alumnus of this prestigious Rep. Babajimi Benson’s capacity building initiatives, my role as a Pathfinder, is to let potential participants know what it entails; to maximize the moment, while they’re there in China; to have a good understanding of their seminar in order to justify the purpose of the program back at home; represent Nigeria as a good ambassador and try to find time to relate, rest, relax, communicate, and network, because everything that’s needed to succeed by all participants has been provided for by both our amiable Rep. Babajimi Benson and the Chinese Government”, he advised.

“I want them to know that it’s a privilege and honor to represent one’s country at such a high level,,and ones must not take it for granted, but maximize every opportunity to showcase ones talent, knowledge, exposure. More so, it gives room to relate at the international level, while connecting and also finding room to rest, relax and explore China”.

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