#BounceExclusive: Meet Bello Wasiu, The 62-Year-Old Graduate Butcher
Butchers are known to have blood stains on their dresses, very sharp knives in their hands and large smiles on their faces.
But they are generally perceived to be uneducated individuals because of the conditions and environment in which they operate.
On our visit to an abattoir in Lagos, Bounce News closely observed the process. First the slaughtering, the skinning, the butchering, the 'de-boning' and the chopping into sizable chunks which customers price.
This chain reaction requires a lot of precision, courage and technique.
Among his peers, 62 year old Bello stands out. He looks like everyone else but is the one pushed forward to speak on their behalf on most occasions. He is a graduate and a very confident butcher.
He was dishing out commands to his subordinates at the popular Oko Oba abattoir in Lagos when I approached him.
When he was informed about the purpose of my visit, a big smile covered his well carved out tribal marked face.
The slab where Bello Wasiu does his business
How It All Started
Bello never thought he would turn out to be a butcher when he graduated from the Obafemi Awolowo University where he obtained a degree in Agricultural Education.
He got his first degree from Oyo State College of Education, Ilesha before proceeding to Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife in Osun State.
He said after completing his studies and National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), his flair for politics made him join the defunct Social Democratic Party (SDP) in 1990.
“I joined the Social Democratic Party in 1990 after completing my studies. I was elected a ward councilor during the Former Military President Ibrahim Babangida era between 1990-1993.
“We were not allowed to complete our tenure by Babangida, he canceled the June 12 1993 elections”, he said.
From Politics To Butchering
His journey as a butcher began in 1994 after losing his seat as a ward councillor and he could not secure any ‘white collar’ job.
He revealed that things were a bit tough for him after late General Sanni Abacha toppled the interim government of Earnest Shonekan.
“I searched for white collar job, but could not get one. So with my experience as an educated person, I spoke to some of my friends who were already established butchers at Ojo Market.
“They taught me everything about the trade, that was how I became a butcher."
The father of seven, who is married to two women, said even though being a butcher entails a lot of endurance, he has no regret so far as he can meet his needs and caters for his large family.
He advised young graduates to always find other decent means of livelihood if the desired white collar jobs are not forthcoming.
"I would advise young graduates out there to be self-engaged or self-employed instead of waiting endlessly for white collar jobs. There are so many trades they can do such as farming, fishing, even this butchering is okay only if they can endure”, he said.
See video below: