Many people claim to be philanthropists (some rightly so), but Jamil Mohammed Abubakar, a Nigerian pilot, does not need to claim the philanthropist title by himself; his generous deeds precede him.
Jamil was born 34 years ago in Gusau, Nigeria. He attended Home Science Association Primary School in Ikoyi, Lagos, and later Nigeria Military School in Zaria from 1997 to 2003. He joined Enfield College London in the UK to study Business Information Technology and graduated in 2005. He later joined Kingston University London and obtained a degree in Computing Information Systems and Multimedia in 2009. He started his aviation training in Aviation Management and Operations at Epic Flight School in New Smyrna, Florida, in the United States, and completed his training (Private Pilot License (PPL), Instrument License, and Commercial Pilot License) in 2010. He also attended AeroStar Training Services LLC in Orlando, Florida, and obtained Type Rating Boeing 737-NG (600-900, BBJ series), and SIM Aero in France (Type Rating Fokker 100) in 2011.
Jamil started his professional aviation career with IRS Airlines in Nigeria as a Commercial Pilot on the Fokker 100. He currently works as an Airline Transport Pilot for Kano-based Azman Air Services Limited, flying the Boeing 737. According to Jamil, a career in aviation was not as a result of circumstances; it was something he loved since childhood. “I have always wanted to serve people. It brings me so much joy to see people safe, healthy and happy. I’m a pilot and philanthropist by virtue of the love I have for humanity and serving people,” he said.
Jamil, who is married to Aliko Dangote’s daughter, is a well-known philanthropist. His wedding, which trended worldwide, was attended by dignitaries from Nigeria and other parts of the world, including Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates. His love for both flying planes and mentorship led him to start a mentorship program for aspiring pilots. He guides anyone interested in aviation on choosing aviation as a career and gives them all the necessary information they need. He also guides younger pilots on how to navigate the aviation industry and grow their careers.
Jamil founded an NGO, the JMD Foundation, that focuses on the less privileged and less fortunate in the society. This year, the foundation commissioned a feeding program for inmates in Gusau Correctional Centre in Nigeria. The foundation also has a Teenage Girls Empowerment Program and several feeding programs across Nigeria to feed needy children. Jamil and his foundation have also paid hospital bills for many needy people in Nigeria who otherwise could not afford them.
Jamil, who has been awarded an honorary award at Kingston University, believes in giving back to the society whenever he can. He believes that being rich is not having lots of money; it is giving without expecting returns.