Uncle ’Kunle Olasope clocks 80

b Y the time you read this, our own Uncle ‘Kunle Olasope would have turned 80. A glimpse of this celebration was given last week by the Nigerian Tribune in a down to earth interview the paper granted the great man last Friday 5th May.

Uncle ‘Kunle Olasope is a household name in the broadcasting life of this country.  There is no way the history of broadcasting in Nigeria will be written without beautiful references made to the unique contributions of “Egbon” ‘Kunle Olasope to the event. He was born a star and he became a star in broadcasting in Nigeria. I came to know of him in his days at the Western Nigeria Broadcasting Service (WNBS) of those days. There are those who still argue that ‘Kunle Olasope was the first face seen on the Western Nigeria Television Service of those years.

We will all recall that Papa Obafemi Awolowo was the man that brought the first television service to the then Western Nigeria. “Egbon” ‘Kunle Olasope was visibly seen on the WNTV of those years in Nigeria. No one can forget that contribution. We now also know that Mrs. Aniuke Agbaje Williams was equally one of the stars of television of those years. So also was ‘Segun Sofowote and of course a member of my generation Jibola Dedenuola. Age has caught up with these stars. Their contributions however remain untouched. This will be for a long time to come. Uncle ‘Kunle Olasope is 80 years old now. He was a great man.

WNBS/WNTV meant so many things to so many people at that time. I remember so well that everyday at about 3.00p.m, WNBS/WNTV ran a near three-hour programme showing out the best of highlife music from Ghana and Nigeria on radio. It was a good programme that kept many people alive those days. Uncle ‘Kunle Olasope was one of the brains behind that never-to-be-forgotten programme.

“Egbon” ‘Kunle Olasope’s news analysis on WNBS/WNTV was second to none. He was a star among stars. His home town Efon Alaye in present-day Ekiti State is just 20 miles from my home town in Ilesa, Osun State. I have tried to visit him and others like Dr. “Express” ‘Kunle Alajide, Professor Opeyemi Ola and others for a long time has not enabled me to honour the promise. I had the unique opportunity of working with Uncle ‘Kunle Olasope in the Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN) days during the second republic. “Egbon” ‘Kunle Olasope worked with the late Mama H.I.D Awolowo during the later years of the second republic.

• Kunle Olasope

He was a fine man to work with. His memory of events is first class. Uncle ‘Kunle Olasope remembers days and events with impressive ease. We all loved to crowd near him to appraise events of the past. We give praise to God that Uncle ‘Kunle Olasope is still at his finest and best in recounting events of the past.

Uncle ‘Kunle Olasope was a good friend of Uncle ‘Segun Awolowo. He still keeps clear memory of his friendship with Uncle ‘Segun Awolowo till today. He (Kunle Olasope) was equally very close to our late ‘Wole Awolowo (the unbreakable of the Unbreakable Heritage) who died some years ago.

The Anglican Communion in Nigeria cannot forget Uncle ‘Kunle Olasope’s contributions so easily. My friend and classmate Bishop Ranti Odubogun (retired) respects ‘Egbon’ ‘Kunle Olasope so well. God will continue to bless him. Uncle, we all love you and we will forever remain a part of your brilliant life contributions.


In Memory of Hon. Mrs. Tomi Ogunnowo

On 3rd May 2017, I received a text message from the husband of the late Mrs. Tomi Ogunnowo. The message ran thus: “Sir, I am husband of late Hon. Mrs. Tomi Ogunnowo, Somolu Constituency! Just called to wish you and PDP well Sir”!

It was a sad message in that, I and many people were never told of the death of this woman when she died about five years ago. I was completely destabilised by the message and I had replied thus:- God bless you for your kind message! Please, I did not hear of your wife’s death. When did she die? May her soul rest in peace!”

The husband of the late Tomi sent the following reply:- “It will be five years this month – 25th”. She passed away in 2012. I just remembered her today and what she told me about your assistance. God bless you sir.”

Oh my God! I am raising this issue today because it is simply unbelievable that a wonderful woman like the late Hon. Mrs. Tomi Ogunnowo could pass into eternity five years ago without her party (PDP) being informed of the tragic news. I was so perplexed with the news that I asked immediately from Comrade Bari Salau to kindly let me know about this death.

Comrade was my Personal Assistant as Minister of Transport and Aviation of the Abacha regime. I felt that there was no way, he (Bari Salau) would not have known of the event. Comrade Bari Salau later told me he knew of the woman but never heard she had died.

Fellow countrymen and women, Mrs. Tomi Ogunnowo was a dedicated member  of the PDP who gave her best in the service of her party PDP. She was from Osun State and was married to an Ogun Sate Lawyer. She was so dedicated and loving that all those who came into contact with her, knew her well.

I had to turn to Barrister Wale Onile-ere (a good friend of her husband) to be fully informed of the circumstances of the woman’s death.

It however still remains a mystery to me that such a dutiful woman could pass away without adequate information being given to her party colleagues about how she died. It will remain a most painful death. A very humble lady has passed into the world beyond.

May the soul of Mrs. Tomi Ogunnowo rest in peace! May God bless her husband out family!! May her memory continue to remain blessed!!!

Good-Bye and Good-Night – Hon. Mrs. Tomi Ogunnowo.