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Biography of Dele Giwa

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Dele Giwa (16 March 1947 – 19 October 1986) was a Nigerian journalist, editor and founder of Newswatch magazine, who was killed by a mail bomb in his home on 19 October 1986. The assassination occurred two days after he had been interviewed by State Security Service (SSS) officials.

Background

Sumonu Oladele “Baines” Giwa was born on 16 March 1947 to a poor family working in the palace of Oba Adesoji Aderemi, the Ooni of Ife. He attended local Authority Modern School in Lagere, Ile-lfe. When his father moved to Oduduwa College, Ile-Ife as a laundry man, he gained admission to that school. Dele Giwa travelled to the USA for his higher education, earning a BA in English from Brooklyn College in 1977.  Giwa’s second marriage, to Florence Ita Giwa, lasted 10 months. He later married Olufunmilayo Olaniyan on July 10, 1984, and they were married until his death in 1986.

Dele Giwa and fellow journalists Ray Ekpu, Dan Agbese and Yakubu Mohammed founded Newswatch in 1984, and the first edition was distributed on January 28, 1985.  A 1989 description of the magazine said it “changed the format of print journalism in Nigeria [and] introduced bold, investigative formats to news reporting in Nigeria”.  However, in the first few months of the administration of General Ibrahim Babangida, who took power in August 1985, the magazine was shamelessly flattering. It printed his face on the cover four times and even criticized “anyone who attempted to make life unpleasant for Babangida”. Later, the paper took a more

Early Life

Sumonu Oladele “Baines” Giwa was born on March 16, 1947 to Musa and Ayi Elekia Giwa (both from Ugbekpe-Ekperi, Bendel State, in what is now Edo State) in Ile-Ife, Ife Central LGA, Osun State. Musa was a laundry man in the Ooni of Ife’s palace, while Elekia stayed at home and sold a few items to complement her husband’s meager income. Dele lost a younger sister due to illness at birth and as the oldest of six children, Dele was very protective of his siblings.  In 1950, at the age of three, Dele was enrolled in a Koranic preparatory school in Ile-Ife where he was considered outstanding. In 1955, he was enrolled at the Ansar-Udeen Primary School in Ile-Ife, from which he would run back and forth to continue his Koranic education at the preparatory school. In 1960, Dele began attending the Local Authority Modern School in Lagere, Ile-Ife, and moved out of his parents’ home to stay with one of his father’s clients. In January 1964, Dele was admitted into Oduduwa College after passing the entrance examination. His father worked as a laundry man at the college and had a percentage of his monthly pay deducted to pay for Dele’s school fees. He was academically brilliant, especially in English language, English literature, and Bible knowledge. He was promoted to form two after passing his first term examination brilliantly four months after being enrolled at the college. While he was at Oduduwa College, he was the editor of the school newsletter, The Torch. He was known for being brash and vocal in his articles, and this got him in trouble. In 1967, around the birth of his first son, he gave himself the nickname “Baines”, after then American President Lyndon Baines Johnson. He left Oduduwa College as Baines Oladele Giwa. He worked as a clerk at Union Bank, and later as in the administration department at Nigeria Tobacco Company (NTC). It was the next job as a news assistant at the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) that strengthened his dream of becoming a journalist. In 1971, Dele enrolled at Brooklyn College (part of the City University of New York – CUNY). Because of a lack of funds he had to drop out completely in 1972, but was able to return after getting a job at Chase Manhattan Bank. He graduated from Brooklyn College and enrolled in a Public Communication master’s degree programme at Fordham University (also in New York).

Giwa was married three times. In April 1974, he married Ann, an African-American nurse. They had their first son, Dele Jr, in July of the same year. A couple of years later their second son, Tunde, was born. In 1981, two years after moving back to Nigeria to work at the Daily Times, his first daughter, Olufunmilayo, was born. In the same year, he met and married his second wife, Florence Ita. They were married for ten months.

He met his third wife, Olufunmilayo Olaniyan, at the National Concord (where he was working before he left to start Newswatch) and they got married on July 10, 1984. They had their only child, Ayodele Aisha, in February 1985.

Death

In the days leading to his death, Giwa was falsely accused of trying to radicalise Nigeria and looking for ways to destabilise it, as well as of possibly publishing stories on the removal of government officials. At this point, he started to fear for his life and that of his family. On Sunday October 19, 1986; Giwa was working in his study with fellow journalist and friend, Newswatch’s London bureau Chief Kayode Soyinka, when he received a parcel with a “confidential” stamp and the Nigerian coat-of-arms and “from the Commander-in-Chief” printed on the corner. The parcel was a bomb and exploded as Giwa opened it. Soyinka lost consciousness, and Giwa’s wife – who had just put their daughter Aisha to sleep upstairs – had to get Giwa out of the smoke. His legs had been crushed and cut off in the explosion. He was rushed to hospital where, after many attempts to save his life, he died. An investigation ensued with Newswatch calling for the suspension of the security officials linked to the killing. Nine months after Giwa’s death, the police said that all their leads had been exhausted and that they could not find any suspects. Years later, his death is still remembered by many. After his death, Newswatch was not the same. Relations between the magazine and the government hit an all-time low and the articles it published were poor and unimaginative. By April 1987, the magazine was essentially dead. It was banned for publishing what seemed to be a harmless government White Paper. On May 8, 2011, 51% of the shares of Newswatch Communications Limited were purchased by Global Media Mirror Ltd, publishers of the National Mirror.

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Biography

Biography of Olabisi Onabanjo

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Victor Olabisi Onabanjo (1927–1990) was governor of Ogun State in Nigeria from October 1979 – December 1983, during the Nigerian Second Republic. He was of Ijebu extraction.

Background

Oloye Victor Olabisi Onabanjo was born in 1927 in Lagos. He was educated in Lagos and at the Regent Street Polytechnic in the United Kingdom, where he studied journalism between 1950 and 1951. He worked as a journalist for several years before becoming a full-time politician. His column Aiyekooto (parrot – known for telling the plain truth) appeared in the Daily Service and Daily Express newspapers between 1954 and 1962.

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Victor Olabisi Onabanjo (1927–1990) was governor of Ogun State in Nigeria from October 1979 – December 1983, during the Nigerian Second Republic. He was of Ijebu extraction.

Oloye Victor Olabisi Onabanjo was born in 1927 in Lagos. He was educated in Lagos and at the Regent Street Polytechnic in the United Kingdom, where he studied journalism between 1950 and 1951. He worked as a journalist for several years before becoming a full time politician. His column Aiyekooto (parrot – known for telling the plain truth) appeared in the Daily Service and Daily Express newspapers between 1954 and 1962.

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Olabisi Onabanjo was elected chairman of the Ijebu Ode Local Government Area in 1977 under the tutelage of Chief Obafemi Awolowo. He was elected governor of Ogun State in October 1979 on the Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN) platform.  He was known as an unpretentious and plain-speaking man, and his administration of Ogun State was considered a model at the time and later.

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On May 13, 1982 he commissioned Ogun Television.  The Ogun State University, founded on 7 July 1982 was renamed Olabisi Onabanjo University on May 29, 2001 in his memory. He established the Abraham Adesanya Polytechnic, but General Oladipo Diya who became military governor in 1983 closed the school down, only to be re-opened after the return to democracy in 1999.

Political career

Olabisi Onabanjo was elected chairman of the Ijebu Ode Local Government Area in 1977 under the tutelage of Chief Obafemi Awolowo. He was elected governor of Ogun State in October 1979 on the Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN) platform. He was known as an unpretentious and plain-speaking man, and his administration of Ogun State was considered a model at the time and later.

On May 13, 1982 he commissioned Ogun Television. The Ogun State University, founded on 7 July 1982 was renamed Olabisi Onabanjo University on May 29, 2001 in his memory. He established the Abraham Adesanya Polytechnic, but General Oladipo Diya who became military governor in 1983 closed the school down, only to be re-opened after the return to democracy in 1999.

Later career

After the military take-over in December when General Muhammadu Buhari took power, he was thrown in jail for several years. After release, he returned to journalism, publishing his Aiyekooto column in the Nigerian Tribune from 1987 to 1989.

Death

Onabanjo died on April 14, 1990. Selected articles from his column were published in a book in 1991.

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Biography

Biography of Musiliu Obanikoro

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Musiliu Olatunde Obanikoro (popularly known as Koro) is a Nigerian politician. He served as Senator for Lagos State from 2003–2007, and was later appointed High Commissioner to Ghana.

Background

Musiliu Olatunde Obanikoro was born in Lagos. He is from Bakare family of Ita-Ado in Lagos Island, Ikare and Ilashe in Amuwo Odofin Local Government of Lagos State, the Obanikoro (Ajayi-Bembe) family of Lagos and Idoluwole (Ojo Local Government of Lagos), and the Eletu-Odibo (Oshobile) family of Isale-Eko, Lagos. He attended Saint Patrick Catholic School, Idumagbo, Lagos and Ahmadiyya College (Anwar-ul/Islam College) Agege. He worked briefly as a Clerical Officer at LSHMBS, and at Union Bank as a Clerk before traveling overseas for further studies. While in the US, he attended Texas Southern University where he earned his B.Sc degree in Public Affairs and Master’s Degree in Public Administration (M. P. A).

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He served as an intern with Houston adult Probation Department, Houston, Texas. He worked as a social worker and later as the Head of the adolescent unit with Little Flower Children Service (an agency affiliated with New York City Department of Social Service). He is an honorary citizen of Glenarden, Maryland and Little Rock, Arkansas.

Early political career

He returned to Nigeria in 1989 and started his political career immediately. He was appointed as Caretaker Committee Chairman of Surulere Local Government (National Republican Convention); he was elected as the State Deputy Chairman (NRC); appointed by Governor Otedola’s administration as Director, LASBULK (Lagos State Bulk Purchasing Corporation); and member, Lagos State Football Association. He has served as Delegate to Local Government Congress, State Congress, and National Convention. He has also served as Elected State Secretary, Justice Forum. He was also the Chairman, Lagos Island Local Government. He was a national Executive member, Grassroots Democratic Movement (GDM) under the military government of General Sani Abacha.

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He was appointed State Commissioner for Home Affairs and Culture in 1999 and served for four years before he was elected Senator of the Federal republic of Nigeria.

Later career

In April 2007 Musiliu Obanikoro ran for governor of Lagos State on the PDP ticket, but lost the election to Babatunde Fashola of the Action Congress. The election was marred by violence. In one incident, Musiliu Obanikoro was said to have narrowly escaped death in an armed attack on his car in Ikeja. His nomination as PDP candidate was controversial. Hilda Williams, widow of the murdered Engineer Funsho Williams, had been declared winner of the Lagos PDP primaries, but the PDP National Executive Committee (NEC) led by Ahmadu Ali gave the ticket to Obanikoro. The disunited PDP under Bode George also lost the Lagos State Senate and all but one House of Representatives and 37 State House of Assembly seats to the AC.

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In a newspaper interview in July 2007, Obanikoro called on the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency in Lagos State, claiming that infrastructures and values had completely collapsed.

President Umaru Yar’Adua appointed Musiliu Obanikoro as Nigerian High commissioner to Ghana in May 2008.

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Biography

Biography of Rauf Aregbesola

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Engineer Rauf Aregbesola (born 25 May 1957) is a Nigerian politician who ran for governor of Osun State in the 2007 elections. Although the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidate Olagunsoye Oyinlola was declared the winner, Aregbesola appealed the decision and on 26 November 2010 was declared the winner.

Aregbesola was formerly an activist. He was Lagos Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure when he ran for election in April 2007 on the Action Congress platform. In May 2008, Aregbesola called over 100 witnesses and tendered 168 exhibits in his petition before the Election Petitions Tribunal, alleging violence and ballot boxes stuffing in the election. In an October 2008 interview, he described Oyinlola as “a bully who came from a reactionary military arm”, stating that Oyinlola had done nothing for the people of Osun state. He also claimed that 12 people had died in the election violence.

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In August 2009 the police arrested Aregbesola, apparently for involvement in the alleged forgery of a police report on the conduct of the elections. Later that month he sought bail so that he could perform the lesser Hajj in Saudi Arabia. In August 2010 the police summoned him to make a statement about a 14 June 2007 bomb explosion near the ministry of water resources. Aregbesola denied any involvement, stating that he was in Abuja at the time.

Justices of the Federal Appeal Court, Ibadan finally declared Aregbesola the winner of the 2007 election, ordering that he be sworn in as governor by noon on 27 November 2010.The Governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, offered his congratulations for the belated recognition of his election victory.

Rauf Aregbesola, current Governor of Osun State, and an engineer by training, was born in May 1957. He had his primary and secondary education in Ondo State from where he proceeded to The Polytechnic, Ibadan where he studied Mechanical Engineering, graduating in 1980. He thereafter started work gathering experience in both private and public sectors, especially in organizations such as Nigeria External Telecommunications Limited and Lagos Airport Hotel before establishing his own engineering firm, Aurora Nigeria Ltd which has handled numerous major projects for both government and private organizations in most states of the federation.

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Governor Aregbesola’s involvement in politics started during his undergraduate days at The Polytechnic, Ibadan. His active support for Bola Tinubu’s campaign for governorship in 1999 earned him the state commissionership for works and infrastructure in which capacity he brought a lot of innovations into public works to tackle the multifarious problems of the state. In the 2007 elections, he ran for the gubernatorial elections in his native Osun State. Although the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidate was declared the winner, Rauf Aregbesola appealed against the decision and was on 26th November 2010 declared the winner. He was sworn in as the Governor for a four-year term

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Schools Attended:   ▪       The Polytechnic Ibadan

National Offices Served: ▪       Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Lagos State, Nigeria (1999-2007)

Titles, Honor’s and Memberships:   ▪       Nigerian Institute of Management (NIM).

▪       Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE)

▪       Nigerian Association of Technological Engineers (NATE)

▪       Certified Marketing Communications Institute of Nigeria (CMCIN). Chairman, Aurora Nigeria Limited (1986)

▪       Ambassador of Goodwill for the State of Tennessee, USA.

▪       Nigerian Society of Engineers Merit Award (Contribution to Engineering Discipline).

▪       Best Commissioner, Lagos State Award

Political Career

Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, the governor of the State of Osun is by all indications an ‘Unusual Governor’. It started with his entry into the murky waters of the politics of his state of origin, even though he had become very popular with Lagos politics. He had excelled in the politics of Lagos State, where he served as Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure for eight years, before venturing into the politics of Osun State.

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