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    Gani Adams @53: Four best uni. students get N200k each

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    Aareonakakanfo of Yoruba land, Iba Gani Abiodun Ige Adams has restated his com­mitment to raising the stan­dard of education in Nigeria.

    Speaking at his 53rd birthday anniversary where he played host to prominent dignitaries in Ikeja, Lagos, Iba Adams stat­ed that it has been his dream to support brilliant and indigent students across Nigeria.

    The Yoruba generalissi­mo also disclosed that he had been offering scholarships to the best students in the tertia­ry institutions for the past five years, especially during the annual birthday celebration.

    He added that such a ges­ture had also helped the ben­eficiaries in securing a better future for the students.

    “We started the initiative under the Aareonakakanfo Scholarship Award and the intention is to give the little I have in the form of a donation to the educational develop­ment of the students that are brilliant in their respective disciplines across the south­west and beyond.

    “Each of the students is en­titled to a certain amount of money and over the years, the feedback has been awesome.

    “It is my own way of giv­ing back to society. We say the young ones are the future of tomorrow, yet we didn’t give them the opportunity to grow, the educational standard drops by the day, and many of the Ni­gerian youths are now involved in uncomplimentary deals.

    “Looking at the bleak fu­ture, I have decided to change the ugly narratives by seeking the best way to raise the stan­dard of education in the coun­try and offer the youth and the students the best through this initiative.

    “Our education sector is comatose, the future is bleak and there is an urgent need for intervention that is why we need to intervene and I am happy that I rise to the occasion at this critical time to salvage the ugly situation in the education sector.

    “The four brilliant students from four tertiary institutions to be awarded this year are: Akinsanya Ganiyat Adedo­yin, from Lagos state univer­sity, Samad Abidemi Abdul Hamid, from Kwara state university, Khadijat Oladip­upo, from the University of Ibadan, and Adegbite Victo­ria, from Olabisi Onabanjo University.”

    “We have their datas and that of the previous beneficiaries so that we can monitor their progress at every point in time.

    “It is my joy and my heavenly spirit usually aligns with helping the poor.”

    Speaking about the birthday ceremony, Iba Adams stated further that it is an annual event that has become a tradition.

    He added: “People all over the world come together to celebrate with me on the special occasion.

    “That is how it has always been in the past 25 years.

    “Every year, I gather people from all walks of life to rejoice and celebrate with me on the special occasion of my birthday.

    “It is a special day for me and I am always happy to see how people come from all over the world to celebrate with me.

    Prominent royal fathers, business tycoons, eminent personalities, and dignitaries from Nigeria and abroad were present at the event.

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    JUST IN: Agura of Gbagura joins his forefathers at 61

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    Oba Sabur Olajide Bakre, Agura of Gbagura Egba Land has joined his forefathers.

    According to information made available to Freelanews, Oba Sabur joined ancestors on Wednesday at a Lagos hospital where he was rushed to after his health condition deteriorated.

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    Administrative secretary to the Agura Palace confirmed the incident.

    Oba Bakre, 61, was installed in 2019 by former Governor Ibikunle Amosun.
    Otunba Gbenga Daniel freelanews

    It was further gathered that the remains of the Monarch arrived Abeokuta on Wednesday night, for possible internment on Thursday, according to Islamic rites.

    A message from the administrative secretary to the Agura Palace, Chief Razaq Adesola Obe reads, “The Osi of Egbaland and Balogun of Ibadan Township Gbagura Abeokuta has mandated me to inform you that His Royal Majesty Oba Dr Saburee Babajide Bakre Jamolu 11, the Agura of Gbagura has joined His ancestors today 14th June, 2023.

    “May Kabiyesi’s soul rest in perfect peace.”

    The 9th Agura of Gbagura, Jamolu the Second, was installed at Oke-Iddo, Abeokuta on 21st May 2019.

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    Celebrating Professor Bolanle Awe at 90: A pioneer and towering influence, By Toyin Falola

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    Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown, and weary are the shoulders that bear the weight of responsibilities. To be a pioneer is to be constantly in the spotlight and under the scrutiny of people, many of whom did not have enough bravery to embark on the course that you chose to chart. For Professor Bolanle Awe, life has been full of its challenges and resplendent with successes and bouts of joy. More importantly for her, life has been fulfilling, satisfying, and laced with legacies printed on the sands of time.

    Welcome to the big feast in honour of Professor Bolanle Awe! We start on 28 January with a social celebration organised by family and friends. Next, Professor Dele Layiwola is presenting a festschrift in the months ahead. And the “queen” of all the events, a major collaborative partnership by the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Lagos, and the University of Ibadan, is the two-day conference on 13 and 14 February at the University of Ibadan on the theme “Oral Traditions and Written Histories.” The length of age is a blessing; Professor Awe can now enjoy all the accolades.

    Being, emerging, or coming first is a heavily romanticised concept among humans. As we are innately wired to be competitive and continually pursuant of goals, it is not surprising that “first” is one of society’s most desirable qualities or outcomes. We all have our personal stories about being on either side of the divide — being the first or not. For some, it is joy and celebration among family members. For others, it is the famous question of whether the one who emerged first has two heads. And still, some are severely beaten for emerging first — one, the least among other numbers; only superior to zero.

    The concept of first has other sides that do not receive as much thought, attention, and discourse as humans wish to lead, emerge first, and stay ahead of others. However, like the head that wears the crown, uneasy is the first position. In a more generic context, to be first means to be spotlighted. And in being spotlighted, one draws attention to oneself, and every other person’s pursuit and mission is to best the first or leading competitor. Unlike others who have someone they could feel motivated to overtake, the person in the first position can only compete with himself/herself and seek to be better than his/her previous records.

    In a more specific context, being a pioneer in one’s field is desirable and enjoyable. However, several expectations, struggles, and obstacles come with this same feat. On one hand, to have been the first or a pioneer in your field means you had little to no material to work with; and there was hardly any guidance for you. There was no one in whose footsteps you could have followed, and while you could have had mentors, their mentorship would not have been fully specific and tailored to a field you’re pioneering.

    In the same vein, a pioneer in a field would bear the burden of serving as the guide to the several others who come after him or her. Even when a field has successfully garnered other experts, the pioneer will continually be consulted and expected to actively contribute to the field and participate in research and discourses — and there also exists the unspoken but ever-present pressure to remain relevant in the field.

    For Professor Awe, the concept of first or pioneer is not new; it has been with her throughout her sojourn in academia. Schooled at some of the best colleges and universities in the United Kingdom and the world, Professor Bolanle Awe’s academic quest started in 1960 as the first female lecturer in the Department of History, University of Ibadan. Incidentally, her appointment marked the milestone for the first female academic staff in a Nigerian university, sharing the space and era with Adetoun Ogunsheye, who became the first female professor in the Library and Information Science field. In a male-dominated field in a male-populated university, the then-young Bolanle was committed to making her mark and charting the course for women who would come after her, and in 1976, sixteen years after her first academic appointment, she became a professor of history.

    Professor Awe has spent about sixty years of her fruitful and fulfilling life in commitment to studies, research, contributions to, and the advancement of, history and historical studies in Nigeria, with a special focus on Nigerian women’s history, feminist history, and oral history. Despite the foundational challenges of being the first to chart the course as a female historian, Professor Awe made large strides and wrote her name alongside the pioneering greats.

    Professor Bolanle Awe was not only the first woman on the academic staff of a Nigerian university but also one of the pioneers of the comprehensive study of women’s history and feminist history; she equally emerged as Nigeria’s first female professor of History. These pioneering roles meant that the professor experienced every aspect of being the first. In her role, and being the first woman to be in such an academic role, she would have had little to no guidance to inform her perspectives that, in turn, shaped her into the intellectual colossus in History that she is today.

    Personal experiences and the benefits of being a pioneer in the field would have formed the basis for what, although it could have been exerting, ended up being foundational to the study of Nigerian women’s history, oral history, feminism, and feminist history.

    Professor Awe has spent about sixty years of her fruitful and fulfilling life in commitment to studies, research, contributions to, and the advancement of, history and historical studies in Nigeria, with a special focus on Nigerian women’s history, feminist history, and oral history. Despite the foundational challenges of being the first to chart the course as a female historian, Professor Awe made large strides and wrote her name alongside the pioneering greats. History and historians cannot forget her immense contributions to the study of pre-colonial Nigeria and Nigerian women across several pockets of historical timelines, many of whom had been maligned and marginalised, having little to no traced history and documentation of the exploits that they did. Professor Awe’s scholarship saw her produce intellectual assets to enrich and support the academic community at a desirable rate.

    In the 1970s, when women-focused historical research was still in its embryonic stage, and there were fundamental issues that needed to be addressed to better inform the research into and documentation of Nigerian women’s history, Professor Awe was one of the leading voices that contributed actively in academic research, seminar participation, and engaging in the diplomatic and external work that was needed to get the right support for seminars, conferences, and comprehensive research and reports. For years, she served as an active member of the Women in Nigeria (WIN) association — Nigeria’s first cohesive feminist movement that directly influenced women-focused research.

    In the 1980s, when a group of women banded to work assiduously toward the founding of the Women’s Research and Documentation Centre (WORDOC), domiciled at the University of Ibadan’s Institute of African Studies, Professor Awe was, as you guessed, one of those women. The founding of this Centre catalysed the intensity of women and gender studies in Nigeria and the expansion of the scope of women’s history and studies that had existed before the establishment of the Centre. The significance of the Centre to women’s studies in Nigeria cannot be overemphasised, as it served as the pioneering means of fostering intercontinental exchanges, collaboration and research among Nigerian scholars and universities, and foreign scholars and universities in North America, Europe, and Asia, on women’s studies, gender, and women’s history.


    Beyond the academic realm, the Centre also built a robust relationship with the town — which it still actively builds on till date — and this relationship has positively affected the availability of research assets and resources, opening scholars’ eyes to existing concerns in society through their engagement with women outside the academic environment, and also forming the basis for discourses and providing research areas and perspectives to the scholars.

    Beyond academia, Professor Awe excelled in her service to the Nigerian nation and the world. From 1990 to 1992, she served, yet again, in an inaugural position as the first Chair of the Nigerian Commission for Women, which was set up in 1989 by the Federal Government. She assiduously served to push for women’s welfare and development without the attendant political undertones that were initially the government’s basis for establishing the Commission.

    Today, the Women’s Research and Documentation Centre remains in existence and continues to do its work in engaging the community and gown, organising conferences, being the home for women scholars and researchers, and supporting women-focused research. Although the founding members may no longer be the active faces of the organisation, their legacy and commitment have birthed the contemporary generation and leaders of the organisation. Indeed, another win for the pioneering Professor Bolanle Awe.

    Aside administrative work, Professor Awe has authored several books. In her collection of written books, one stands out for me, especially as it ties back to the essence of her work and commitment over the years. It is a book titled Nigerian Women and Pioneer Icons. It’s a solid tracing and evaluation of the contributions and achievements of Nigerians in several fields of endeavour. Particularly, this book draws on data from the pre-colonial era and, more importantly, how these women’s contributions, though individually, form part of the collective contributions that could be historically traced vis-à-vis the evolution and development of the Nigerian nation-state.

    Beyond academia, Professor Awe excelled in her service to the Nigerian nation and the world. From 1990 to 1992, she served, yet again, in an inaugural position as the first Chair of the Nigerian Commission for Women, which was set up in 1989 by the Federal Government. She assiduously served to push for women’s welfare and development without the attendant political undertones that were initially the government’s basis for establishing the Commission. Professor Awe’s service was faithful to the mission statement of the Commission, a bravery that would eventually result in her resignation when the lines became blurry as to the service the Commission was supposed to commit to.

    Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown, and weary are the shoulders that bear the weight of responsibilities. To be a pioneer is to be constantly in the spotlight and under the scrutiny of people, many of whom did not have enough bravery to embark on the course that you chose to chart. For Professor Bolanle Awe, life has been full of its challenges and resplendent with successes and bouts of joy. More importantly for her, life has been fulfilling, satisfying, and laced with legacies printed on the sands of time. It is indeed a historic time to be ushered into the exclusive club of the nonagenarians, Professor Awe. Happy Birthday and hearty cheers!

    Please join us in February at the University of Ibadan for an elaborate intellectual feast.

    Toyin Falola, a professor of History, University Distinguished Teaching Professor, and Jacob and Frances Sanger Mossiker Chair in the Humanities at The University of Texas at Austin, is the Bobapitan of Ibadanland and Professor Emeritus in the Humanities, Lead City University, Ibadan.

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    Dallas International Yoruba Movie Awards recognises Lateef Adedimeji for his role in Ayinla (Pics)

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    The prestigious Dallas International Yoruba Movies Awards (DIYMA) has bestowed the special “award of excellence” on the multi-talented and cross-over actor Lateef Adedimeji for his outstanding performance in the movie “Ayinla”.

    Mr and Mrs Kogberegbe, the CEOs of DIYMA, presented the award on Wednesday, 25th January 2023, during a “Meet & Greet” event organised in honour of the celebrity couple- Lateef and Adebimpe Adedimeji in Dallas, Texas, United States of America.

    According to the organisers of the awards, “DIYMA recognises outstanding crafts and celebrates same as the opportunity presents itself. The interpretation and representation of late Ayinla Omowura (eegunmogaji) in the eponymous musical film presents a rare nostalgic experience that only the professionalism of Lateef and Dr Tunde Kelani can offer.”

    Speaking further, the CEOs challenged the Yoruba indigenous filmmakers to do more in promoting the indigenous language film because language is critical to cultural identity. “On our part, we shall continue to support the Yoruba film industry in our little way. We believe strongly in the industry. We understand that promoting our language is key to preserving our culture. And our culture is the only undisputable commodity we can sell to the world’s admiration.”

    In his remark, Lateef Adedimeji expressed his happiness for the harvest of awards that “Ayinla” is attracting months after it was released. “I am proud and happy that ‘Ayinla” keeps getting the recognition and the accolades that it deserves. Thank you so much, Dallas International Yoruba Movie Awards (DIYMA). God bless you. Okay, guys, let us keep working; more to come”, he said. Adedimeji Lateef will be officially honoured at the DIYMA award night, set to take place on 25th June 2023 in Lagos, Nigeria.

    Directed by the foremost cinematographer in Africa, Tunde Kelani, “Ayinla”- an eponymous musical genre film on the late Apala musician, Ayinla Omowura, was produced by Jade Osiberu and grossed 92 million naira from the cinema exhibition only.

    The DIYMA awards, now in its third edition, celebrate the outstanding performances of actors, producers, and filmmakers in the Yoruba movie industry and provide a platform for recognition and growth. This year, DIYMA is proud to announce an increase in cash prizes, with winners receiving between N100,000 Naira and N300,000 Naira, depending on the category.

    DIYMA invites producers, actors, and filmmakers to submit their movies for consideration before the closing date of 27th February 2023. Eligible movies for this award must have only been uploaded on YouTube in 2022.

    For more information on the DIYMA awards, please stay glued to our Instagram page @officialdiymaawards.

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    whatsapp image 2023 01 31 at 12.03.46 am

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