Onpetu, Aremu, Adiyeloja: A troika and diamond

Three Nigerians clocked sixty years in the last couple of weeks whose strides I needed to extol for posterity. One is the Onpetu of Ijeru in Oyo State, His Royal Majesty Oba Sunday Oladapo Oyediran, Lagbami Osekun III. One of the traditional rulers who first underscored God and not divinities as the source of his existence, the Onpetu was one of the first variant of kings who openly worshipped God in church and confessed that he was a born again Christian. Humble and cerebral, his 21-year reign on the stool of his forefathers has brought a lot of developments to his Ijeru, Ogbomoso kingdom.

The second person is Comrade Issa Obalowu Aremu. A Nigerian trade union activist and one of Nigeria’s respected labour leaders, Aremu is the General Secretary of the National Union of Textile, Garment and Tailoring Workers of Nigeria (NVTGTWN). He also doubles as a member of the executive of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC). As Aremu clocked 60 on January 8, labour unions and even the Nigerian presidency rose in celebration of a man who is seen to have paid his dues in union activism and one who has contributed immensely to the moulding of persons and society.

The third is respected broadcaster, Fatai Adiyeloja. Journalist with the Nigerian Television Authority, (NTA) Adiyeloja’s years of broadcasting were marked with commendable strides, especially his knack for underscoring professionalism. January 3, the day of his retirement which he celebrated in Osogbo, his “last command,” also marked the day Adiyeloja bowed out of the NTA. He was known while in service for his humility, depth and quest to do things differently, a knack that made him veer into photography.


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