Another feather to his glittering cap as Ogbomoso societies honour Dayo Popoola

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Another feather to his glittering cap as Ogbomoso societies honour Dayo Popoola
Yinka ADETUNJI

A little over a month after he was conferred with the Honorary Doctorate Degree of Civil Law (Honorary Causa) by the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, LAUTECH, Ogbomoso, Major General Oladayo Popoola (retd) has received another honour, this time from home, as a conglomerate of societies honoured him in a special programme recently (May 26)..
The event which came under the auspices of Ogbomoso Consultative Council, OCC, and held at Ogbomoso Recreation Club Hall, was attended by the creme de la creme of the society, including Justice Adeniran Afolabi (retd), president of Ogbomoso Parapo Worldwide; Dr Saka Balogun, co-chair of OCC and chairman of the occasion; Dr Samson Adegoke Maigida, a retired Finance Director of Federal Medical Centre, Keffi in Nassarawa state; High Chief Sobalaje Otolorin, Areago of Ogbomosoland and other Ilu Chiefs; and Hon Mulika Akande-Adeola.
Some other guests are Professor Mojeed Iliasu, Acting VC, LAUTECH and other principal officers of the institution; Mr Akin Odesola, Registrar, Federal Polytechnic Ayede; Professor Adesola Adepoju, Director General Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria, Ibadan; Sir Segun Adekunle, president of Ogbomoso First Group and who is a retired Federal Permanent Secretary; Engr Muftau Open-Salawu, Babalaje of Ogbomosoland; Hon Segun Adibi, Director General Oyo State Signage and Advertisement Agency; Professor Rom Kalilu; Otunba Bayo Babatunde, first president of O’First Group and its current BOT chairman; and Alhaji Monsur Ejide.
In his opening remark, Sir Segun Adekunle, whose association, O’First Group, initiated the event, said they were happy to be associated with General Popoola, who was a former military governor of Oyo and Ogun states, noting that he was a man with remarkable accomplishments.
He added, “General Oladayo Popoola always rejected any move to honour him; let me inform that he worked tirelessly for the location of LAUTECH in Ogbomoso and has done many other things for his hometown.
“At last today, we are celebrating him in his lifetime, we are happy to be associated with him, his reputation has become a key, his integrity is inviolable,” further lauding him as “being in touch with all levels of groups in Ogbomoso.”

Sir Adekunle, president of O:First Group decorating Gen Popoola

Dr Saka Balogun also stated: “We thank God for the life of Gen. Popoola. I wish many of our sons and daughters would not wait long before they make their mark. Whatever offices they are holding they should endeavour to make impact, let us feel the impact of your status.
“God has put you there because of our community. Though many of you are trying but you can do more. Fear not,. Ogbomoso never fears, whatever you can do for the uplifting of Ogbomoso do it,” Balogun stressed.

 

From right: Chief Sobalaje Otolorin, Are ago of Ogbomoso; Gen Popoola; Dr Saka Balogun, a respected community leader; and another guest

Speaking likewise, High Chief Otolorin, maintained that Popoola should have long been honoured while however enthusing that it is not late.
The Areago further charged indigenes of the city who are well placed to facilitate developments and channel resources towards the progress of Ogbomoso “to change the narrative of our town,” just as he commended Popoola for his efforts towards a greater Ogbomoso and encouraged him to do more.
Engr Dayo Lawal, a former chairman of Ogbomoso North local government, submits, “If anyone says Gen Popoola offends him, you need to check that person well, he is perhaps not human. This is someone who won’t look you in the face when speaking with you.
“Gen Popoola is the brain behind the Ogbomoso Recreation Club, he called us together then and mobilized us to birth this place. Ogbomoso Recreation Club is one of the biggest in the Southwest. He is a man of humility who never turns anyone down. He deserves the honours bestowed upon him.”
The event lived up to its billing as many other speakers heaped encomiums on the Ile-Aipon, Saja-born former member of the Nigeria’s Provisional Ruling Council. Justice Adeniran Afolabi, Maigida, Akande-Adeola, Professor Adepoju and others spoke glowingly of him several of them dwelling on his humility, inspiring character and accomplishments.
Responding, Popoola expressed surprise at the honour disclosing he was actually kept in the dark regarding the scale of the programme.
He emphasized on the imperative of unity in Ogbomoso, “please, let’s look at this,” he concluded.
The highpoint of the event was the presentation of Award of Excellence to him by the Ogbomoso First Group.

 

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