My son , Orlando was a great man

 

 

                      Orlando’s mother and BoN during the Interview

Madam Morenike is the mother of the late musician Dr. Orlando Owoh, she said she once prepared a concoction for the late Musician to discourage him from smoking Indian hemp but he rejected it.

           Carved on the wooden  door of the  bungalow is the    artwork   of the late African Kennery, Owomoyela Oladipupo Olaore [aka Orlando Owoh] . Each time the  centenarian mother of Orlando   sees the   carved wooden  artwork   of her son she feels sad  , ” I am always sad seeing the carved life size of Orlando on the door but what can I  do than to wipe and dust it to make it clean”, she told this reporter. She added”  but I found solace in his  children and friends who are supporting me ”  .

Seeing mama one would not believe she is over  100 years of age, as she walks , talks and still agile but she debunked this reporter’s observation and said she  has become old and no longer have that energy  or stamina again as she can no longer walk faster as she used to be. However, one fact remains , she does not use walking stick. ”I now walk slowly , and slowly and cannot go far ”, the old woman stated.

,          

       Late Orlando

She went down memory lane to speak about her popular son who was a musician, but immediately she was asked how she feels hearing his music over the radio , she answered ” I weep , shed tears but would pray to God to let his children live long and bury me .

Mama Morenike lost her son, Orlando Owoh about 10 years   after a brief illness .

Mama is very neat

One thing that cannot be taken away from the old woman is her neatness. She is very neat and   her environment is clean so also the centenarian herself is very neat showing evidence of good living . She   walks slowly  and with dignity .Her  sparsely decorated living room with sofa chairs makes the place  beautiful. She said “My son , I am always neat and my  children and Orlando’s friends take  good care of me you should thank them on my behalf”.

Mama’s Age

If Orlando is alive today he would have been 84, and according to speculations mama is over 100 years of age. Considering her   good stature  many guess that the old woman cannot be less than 100 years of age  while some doubted it but she declared ” I don’t know my age but I know I am over 100 years of age. All  my friends have gone like Madam Eunice, Madam Adenike, , Mrs Asagba , Madam Caroline  Oladoyin    in fact all my friends have died ,I am the only one remaining. That is why I am saying I want to go , there is nothing I am still doing on earth”, she said with shaky voice.

How  I met Orlando’s  father 

When asked to tell her romance with Orlando’s father that produced the late musician , she laughed and said ” Haaa, you want to know? ”
She stated that she was living with her late brother Omoyinbo who was a friend to Owomoyela, Orlando’s father and that was the beginning of the production of the late musician.

Orlando’s real names

Mama said ”my son’s real names are   Oladipupo Olaore   Owomoyela   Orlando Owoh , his father christened him ‘Olaore’  but I called him ‘ Oladipupo’ ”.   Mama  gave the reason why Orlando’s  father gave him the name  ‘Olaore’ , she said “because my late brother, Omoyinbo whom I was living with in Owo  was a friend to Orlando’s father ,   and it was my that brother that  betrothed me to Orlando’s father .I  later  fell in love with him [Owomoyela]   because he was from Ifon so also Orlando’s father .So when he was born , Orlando’s father said he  benefited   from  the friendship and called him “Olaore”         ( Friend’s wealth). His friends called him ”Orlando” and it stuck on him till death” .

       Where are Orlando’s friends?

       When one dies most his  friends are no longer seen again but this is not so to Orlando. Mama has been very grateful to some of her late son’s friends who did not abandon her , she said ” Some of Orlando’s friends  did not desert  me. l just came from Die The Matter his childhood’s friend’s  house who used to give me food and money .Die The Matter has just dropped me at home now, he gives me money , food ,he used to store tubers of yam an gaarii here for me. Same with Oba Francis  Apata, who is the Onipe of Ipe. Oba Apata used to come to me , he drives here  , and that is the chair he sits  (pointing ) whenever he comes here ,not minding his status as a royal father, we would talk and talk, he would tell me that  he would take care of me that i should not die. I want you to pray for me for I  am old enough to die. I thank God that  Orlando’s friends did not abandon me , I am grateful and I hope and pray they will do same  during my burial when I’m gone”.

            Though she looks  hale and hearty but she denied her look and  said ” I can no longer walk as usual , I am not living “, she said sobbing .

         Orlando was talented

          The late musician was rumoured to have inherited his profession from his parents but according to Mama ,  the late musician did not inherit  the skill from his parents , she said ” I didn’t teach him how to sing , though  I was a  chorister  in a church but his own  was natural .And I remember that his father was a member of  ‘ ASINKO ‘ cultural music , and it is believed that may be that was where he also  got it from, but Orlando’s music is more that  of a ordinary  because his music is quite different and unique”, she added.

        Where are Orlando ‘s wives ?

       Mama who lives in Owo , her country home  with some of her children spoke about Orlando’s wives and said  ” Some have gone to remarry while  I am still seeing  some of them, and they have been very  nice  to me  while for those who remarried  have to move on”, she defended them.But her prayers according to her is for the whole children to rally round and come and bury her  when she is gone.

         Orlando’s vacuum

        Yes, Orlando left a big vacuum behind, his death was a fatal blow on the old woman. When does she feel her son’s absence?, the reporter wanted to know , and her response  ”I am always pained each time I remember him.I thought he was the one to bury me but it turned otherwise .It is painful No woman will pray to bury her child”, she said with pains.

        Reincarnation

     Will Mama pray to have Orlando  if she comes to this world again? ! her response ” I wish to give birth to him if the opportunity comes again. I wanted to die when his death was announced .Even ,I still feel like taking poison and die anytime I remember him. I remember how the bad news was broken to me  by one of his  sisters, I felt like dying , up till now I am not myself”.

        The song I love most

         From all the albums Orlando waxed the one her mother loved most is the one she sang to honour her , according to her “I used to listen to his music on the radio, yes, he had a good voice and while listening I would be crying .I love the song he  waxed for me in one of his records  that is “Ero ba mi ki y’emi Morenikeji ye  teja …”,(  greetings to my mother who is selling fish). I also love the  “Ojo” track, which is  among his most popular music he sang in  praise of “Ojo” , mama added  “He sang the song in praise of  Ojo who is a member of our  family .But I don’t know where he ( Ojo ) is now”.

     Orlando’s fame  is from God

      While many mothers whose children are successful and popular would say  it was predicted and and expected but  the late Musician’s mother said with humility that  it is a blessing for her son to be popular for she never expected such in the beginning .She looked  at the ceiling when asked whether she had any premonition that her son would be popular , she swore “nobody told me that Orlando will be a great man when I had his pregnancy and I thank God that I didn’t contemplate to  abort it”.

      I tried  to stop him from smoking hemp

        Mama is honest like her son , she said she was  aware that her  late son smoked Ganja  which  she did not supported.  ”What did she do then to stop him?”, she replied “I used to advise him  to stop smoking  Igbo, I even went extra mile to prepare  agbo (herbs/concotion ) for him to make him stop it but he did not take the  concoction”  he  too used  argued  that if he didn’t smoke it he would not have the energy to play and sing” .

Bury me at the cemetery 

Asked  where she would like to be buried  after her death, mama said she preferred her church’s cemetery , “I am not happy that my son , Orlando was buried in Lagos but I have told them all that when I am dead I should be buried at the  Church’s cemetery .I am the Iya Egbe of  St. Andrew’s Cathedral Church, Owo. My father , Jacob ‘slept’ at the cemetery and Mama  Julianah who took care of me was also buried there .their tombs are there. When I die I want to be buried at our cemetery in  Iselu, Owo but not to be taken  to Ifon or anywhere”, she pleaded, adding ”when my son was alive he  said  he  would like me to  be buried in Ifon  when Im gone but I  said no, unfortunately he died before me ,it is painful” , she sobbed.

 

 

 

” Oh! I regret using my only child”


         This is  the story of a 78-year – old woman who used her only child for money making ritual in the 70s. She is now   a Born Again Christian.

 

            She lives in one room. The room stinks to high heavens for she eats, dresses, baths and uses potty in the same room. She made me realize it that she lives in a family house.  In a nutshell the dilapidated building where  is a mud house and had been abandoned due to the danger it poses for it has cracks allover and no reasonable tenant will live there even for free. Apart from this everybody is afraid to live there where this old woman lives.

   “Close the door,  look at the picture placed at the back of the door”, the old woman instructed me with her voice shaking ,  no thanks to  old age that has dealt a fatal blow on her.

   ” That is my son”, she pointed , “my only child. I was influenced by bad friends. I was stupid and I am regretting my action now.

    “I hope you will learn a lesson and tell your friends too to learn from it .All what I am revealing to you is nothing but the truth .The best way in life is to be happy no matter how  poor you are . Just believe that is how God created us and  we were not born equal and we are bound  to  face challenges in life .But hold on to God for all  is vanity”.

           “Mama , are you now a preacher ?”, I asked .”Yes, I am. I have given my life to Jesus  Christ . I can still read with my recommended eye glasses and I have read the  Holy Bible from Genesis to Revelation several times. I have the Holy Koran here with me here too .All I am begging for is forgiveness from God “, she said.

       My story

     ” Only very few people will know me. For it’s been a long time.I have relocated back home after spending many years outside my hometown .It was during the Udoji Salary increment /award when the Federal government increased salaries and gave out loans in 1974 or thereabouts that my case started unfolding. Many civil servants bought electronics like Sound system,  Black and white television, furniture, motorcycles , Volkswagen Beetle , Toyota , Vespa among others .

    ”I was a petty trader, a fish monger .I had friends that used to come all the way from Lagos to attend parties together in my town .That was when  clothes like  Wonyosi , Damask , Guinea Brocade reigned , Bonfo or Mafo gota  styles in vogue. For men it was Baggy. Then we had high heels, Bob Marley shoes,but I  had no money to buy , and then five yards was 15Naira , a big money at that time!.

       “My friends bought theirs but I had no money to buy , luckily one of them bought for me. We always had visitors from Lagos and it was almost every weekend we had parties . I always complained to them of not having money to buy their special clothes .One of them bought Damask, and Guinea brocade for me.They spent money and the highest denomination then was one Naira .Some would come from Lagos with the best and choice cars Mercedez Benz , some with Citroen, Volvo all from Lagos state to my hometown ( a riverrine area I should not mention for they will quickly know it is me )

          “One day , Josephine called me and advised me to stop hawking fish and since I was still young and could have money in future to take care of other children I would  still have .

      “Let I forget, I was not living with my husband , for he was a Federal Civil servant thus he was being transferred from one state to another .With our one child I was trying to get pregnant for him so he comes home regularly and we always meet.

  BoN

         “One of my friends called me one day and advised me to use my only child for money  and that I would still have another child since I was still young .At first I quarreled with her and reported her to one of our friends who laughed at me and said it was the in- thing and nothing spoiled .

      “Do you remember the story of Baba Ibeji that used one of his  twins for money making ritual  in those days?. Well you could be young then “, she said While still talking she asked me to excuse her in order  to ease herself .I went out for one hour and came back later .

      When I came back she asked  the point she was and I told her, she continued her mind-boggling story as I developed goose pimples.

     “It was true that using  man being for money – making was the in -thing and in vogue then. In fact some weekly magazines carried some of the stories then. I remember another one in (she mentioned the place) , when a girl was hawking puff puff and was called upstairs by a man into his living room and was never seen again. She was later traced to the man’s place and when his house was searched the girl was found carrying a  of calabash on her head. Thank God for her younger sister was  kept waiting endlessly  downstairs expecting her sister to come down, she   later raised an alarm. if not she couldn’t have been found. Immediately the girl’s  name was called money began to drop .It was real , too real .Money ? Is the root of  evil .

         “My son, David graduated from one of the federal Universities  he read Civil Engineering .He he was a brilliant chap , he made a second class upper division and went for his NYSC  which he completed .

        “I tricked him to the herbalist’s house , I told him we were going to do juju  for him to get a job in an oil company where he passed the  test and needed to go for an interview. He trusted me and never doubted me . We got there and after some incantations on him, he slept off and his internal organs and some parts were removed .In the dead of the night I with the herbalist went to dump his remains in the river .I was surprised that nobody saw us .On the following day I was the first to report at the police station that I was looking for David . At the police station I cried , and cried and cried .His father also cried and consoled me that I would have another child”.

       As the woman said last sentence , she shook her head and said ” I have repented .I know I am a sinner .If one confesses his sin God will forgive him , this I believe” . She continued.

        “Few years later I became rich; I had small boats for fishing. I joined the popular thick Madam Club, and also many Social Clubs .For many years they called me to be the Chair person of occasions .I donated money and my name rang bell, In fact without me an occasion will not be interesting as I used to donate generously .

       ”My husband did not suspect me and always asked after my welfare, I persuaded  him to leave the civil service and joined me in the business .

     ”One day , I was in the room lamenting , talking to myself  crying and unconsciously  said “David , please forgive me for I didn’t know . I was pushed into doing it “, my husband overheard me and asked what was the meaning, but I lied to him .

       ”My business boomed . I bought canoe boats , trailer lorries , I was rich.Many came to me for  assistance and I offered them.I had gold , I traveled very well .

     ”A woman who knew when I was hawking fish before I became rich asked me to show her the way but I told her it was through hard work, loan from the bank and contacts . She went to the bank , took loan and bought a canoe boat and did other businesses but along the line she failed .The bank she owed auctioned her property .She didn’t know the source of my wealth .

      ”I went to doctors who placed me on fertility drugs ,I went to Europe , USA, and Indian hospitals looking for the fruit of the womb but nothing came .

   “When I clocked 60 , my wealth was dwindling . But one day a woman came for financial assistance and said two of her children did not go to school as she had not paid their school fees .But I spoke rudely to  her and   sent away  and that  I had no time since I was in a meeting  but she didn’t go  she waited till 5 pm in the evening , yet I didn’t answer her .Later  I sent my Personal Assistant  to tell her to come back the following day. When she was going I overheard her as she hissed and said “we all know your secret , you who used your son for money -making ritual can not spend the money “. When I heard I was shocked .How did she know ? Who told her ? .

         “The second day she repeated her call and I gave her a lot of money she never expected . I  called her in and asked her to repeat what she said the previous day, she was shocked that I heard. I begged her to tell me where she heard .Yet, she refused to tell me .I threatened her but she didn’t talk .

       “As usual ,one weekend I went to a party with some of my friends , when I was pressed I went to visit the  ”Ladies”. From the toilet I was hearing two women washing their hands after they  too had used the  ”Ladies” having conversations describing me with what I wore .One of them said ‘that woman , who spent a lot at the party used her only  child  for money making ritual. She thought we didn’t know and everybody is now aware including her husband , but she didn’t know’

       “When I went back to my seat at the party I pretended as if nothing happened , after spending few minutes I left.

       “When I got home, I didn’t tell my husband .But the last straw that broke the camel’s back was what I heard  with my two ears .

      “One day I told my husband I was traveling , but I didn’t travel .I came back at midnight and since I had the keys with me I came in and met him with a woman. I lost my temper and vented  my anger on her , called her names  and threw her out that night but she shocked me with her words , saying ‘Mama, who asked you to use your only child for money ?. I have three kids for your husband and whether you like it or not I am his wife’. I called my husband and asked him many questions , but he shouted at me and  told me since we were wealthy we needed to have these kids who will inherit my property and bury me when I am gone. I became mad .So I have been working for him and his other family ? “

       “Later I asked him of the rumour about my wealth. My husband said ” You see my wife , the moment your money was booming I suspected you. One day I caught you begging your son to forgive you but decided to keep quiet and married another woman secretly  who can give me children. So we are using the money to take care of them that is why I didn’t talk again , of what use?’

      ”Some years ago a Bank liquidated and was closed down, I had millions of Naira and foreign currencies accounts there. Another Bank where I kept my money and domiciliary account  was shut down. We all knew what happened to some very popular banks in this country . All my businesses began to fall. I sold my houses in Lagos and in Port Harcourt and thought I would reinvest but I was swindled by fraudsters .

        “I have been going to church everyday begging God to forgive me .I  donated money to churches and to Mosques as charity .

         ”But one day I called my husband and begged him to tell me who told him my secret, he said it was my friend who introduced me to the herbalist that did juju for me .He said ‘your friend , Josephine called me and said you were rude to her , and that she was the one who showed the way to wealth for you .She even said you all have a clique ‘.

       “Now I have clocked 78 years of age .I have gone back to my place of birth. People should not pity me but help me beg God for forgiveness .

      ”Nobody uses Mercedez Benz, Volvo  we  all  craved for then again. Nobody uses Black and White television again, where is Wonyosi , Damask again?”.

          Asked whether the craze for money is good  , she said ” As long as we are in this world we shall continue to look for money by all means .But I implore you don’t use human blood. My money is gone, my only child is gone, nobody to look up to .

     “My husband died 10yearsago, and had abandoned me for long calling me a witch. All my friends who did same had died and none went to their graves with their wealth .I am still living to suffer for my sin.”

As she made the last sentence  ” I know I have sinned but  I have confessed my sins and I will be forgiven “, she took her Bible and continued reading louder this time .

When I was leaving I gave the old woman two hundred Naira. I looked at the faded picture of her son pasted on the back of the door , shook  my head , and said in my mind         ” who knows what this boy could have become ? “.

 

 

Remembering ARAMATU of Ipele

Pa Daboiku telling the story to Taiwo Abiodun

     Remembering   ARAMATU  of   Ipele

        …She should  be honoured, and I am going to her graveside to worship her says IYALAJE FAMA

    Aramatu was a very powerful woman in Ipele community, Owo, Ondo State.    She was said to be appearing everywhere one and a half years after her death.  When her body was exhumed she was still fresh. Her severed head was returned…

              The whole town was in  confusion  as people ran              helter skelter.   The old and  the young could not sleep with two eyes closed again. Those who could not bear it any longer fled the town both the natives and non natives. Farmers abandoned their  farms and hide their cutlasses and hoes. Early risers had no choice than to hold on till  day break. Night crawlers  became a thing of the past.Those going to  night market resorted to  selling at home. Going to the brook alone became  difficult . The old and the young could not sleep again. Only powerful hunters were bold  to go hunting. The small ancient town was destabilized.Fear gripped everybody.

This is not a fairy tale or tales by the moonlight. It was real.

Oh my God, the ancient town was going empty in a  town where  there was a King!.

Impossible. Kai!, Eewo!, A tii gbo?. Its unheard of that people were leaving in droves. Who else would remain?.

Who will save the situation?. Then the  wise, Chiefs and powerful  elders put their heads together and met the community head , the Monarch, Oba Ogene . A meeting was held on what to do and the best solution was to go in ”Native” way!.

       It all happened in a small town of Ipele, in Owo , Ondo state around 1974 .The news spread fast like wildfire, no sooner  the town became a Mecca of sorts as everybody thronged there to have a glimpse and confirm  the rumor .

               DEAD WOMAN ROSE FROM GRAVE

           The news spread that a woman called Aramatu who had been buried for about one and a half years was  being  sighted in broad day light and at  night  walking, talking and terrorizing the residents. While the mere mention of the name , ”Aramatu”  sent shivers into one’s spine. You dare not  mention  her name ,it is sacred , it is attached to evil , everybody with his or her own stories ; those who saw her   and those who did not.

The dead has risen?. No way, it is abnormal,it is  unheard of and a taboo .Only Jesus Christ died and  rose from the grave!.  Again the  news of the bodiless head whose body was severed and  the  head  was speaking and singing .  Are these real? . It was a not a  rumour, no any iota of doubt in it . It happened.It was real.

According to sources , those who went on  hunting usually saw her in the bush and  she would asked how they were faring  while she would ask nursing  mothers whose children cry  in the  dead of the night to breastfeed their babies!.

                 

              Pa Daboiku

Those in the farm would be saluted by her saying “well done” .

            First to sight her were  the hunters who came to report of seeing  the strange dead  woman. According to our source,  some young  men who  sighted her at the mosque while  coming from a night party said they saw  a woman with a gaslight  but  could not see  her legs , they claimed later that the woman went after them and   beat their chest , the result?- When   they got  home  they started vomiting blood and later died.

              Another source said Aramatu  used to go to  Omolege and Elegbeka markets in the neighboring villages  to sell her provision and she would  sell to  unsuspecting buyers  who did not know she had died.This she did for a very  long time until when  an Ebira man went to her stall to buy cigarette but met her praying at a mosque. The story continued that while the Ebira man called  her that he wanted to buy cigarette   but  since she did not want to break her prayer  so  she did not answer him  but continued her prayer this made the man got annoyed ,  hissed and left. But the man was not lucky  according to the story, Aramatu ran after the man and slapped her back for hissing on her. When the man got home and narrated what happened not knowing she had died, but after being told that  the woman she narrated her story had died , he started vomiting blood and died.

                 In addition, unconfirmed sources said Aramatu  would wake up early in the morning to assist the drivers calling  passengers into their vehicles

According to Pa   Gabriel  Kolawole  Daboiku who is now 87 years of age, a native of  Ipele and a retired headmaster  ” It was during the time of  Ogene head of the of  Ipele  community that it happened .Yes, Aramatun was from Okewoye here in Ipele and at that time my father was a hunter and also a member of Olupele Inner Council. The news spread like wildfire that a dead woman  who had been buried for over one and a half years used to come out at night and the hunters vowed to find solution to it.

Pa Daboiku said ” Aramatu was living in her husband’s house then at Okewoye.The head of Ipele who was the Oba Ogene could not go out  as the Oba claimed  that the said woman, Aramatu used to throw stones on his roofs.

”A meeting was held  and the hunters vowed to find its root,with charms and my father was a hunter and he and his colleagues followed Ogene who was then the head of Ipele in 1974.

About the woman, one Segun said Aramatu was a prominent woman who  used to pass  through Okobola to her farm along Old Owo road, where her farm was.

 

            FRESH BODY EXHUMED

            According to Pa Kolawole “All hunters were commanded to come out and  her   grave was dug up  while her  body  was removed”. The old man said  he saw the woman’s corpse which was still fresh. He said ”they exhumed the body. I saw it . I saw it .It was exactly how she was placed in the coffin that they met her , and  they had buried her over one and a half years yet   she didn’t change  and the body  did not decay.

”The  plaited hair on her head was clean. I learnt she asked her hair be plaited when she was sick before she died”

          According to Ajo’s version , ”the town’s  powerful men went to Egbe in Kwara to prepare some powerful charms to  neutralize  her power and overpower her . Immediately  the Hausa man who was the first person  to be contracted the job  to dig the grave hit  the ground with his digger  his  torso  was swollen   like the size of a  balloon  .Then they brought out the Oro  [Deity] of  the land while  hunters  were charged to be on guard , all  in the  broad day light while  curfew was imposed  and  nobody should go out. Some   hunters sighted   two  pigeons flying towards old Owo road  forced  back the birds  , believing it could be the woman”, narrated Ajo.

                   BODY REBURIED

                According to reports    rituals and sacrifices were offered and the body  was exhumed  and was found fresh .The white cloth used to wrap her was as white as snow .  Not only that some said  in the grave where  the dead woman was buried she had constructed  a big extra room there thus having a room and living  room, and she pushed her coffin somewhere in the grave.

              On what happened to the body after exhuming it , Pa Kolawole said ”  when they hewed the body into pieces  blood was  oozing   out from it and it  was the Ugbamas [ set of age grade] who took the corpse away into the bush called Igbo Omo Oba where witches are buried  and  the dismembered body was buried there”.

                        MANY DEATHS RECORDED

            When the news spread many came from far and near to have a glimpse at the strange woman’s body and confirm the story. According to Pa Daboiku many had accident on their way to view  the corpse , Pa Daboiku  said ” I remember many died in auto crash on their way to here to  confirm the story by viewing   the corpse . Some White men who were coming to have a look at the corpse had accident on the road but the Black men coming behind the White men’s car  had accident and they all perished,I think about four or so died.  I  am not saying the white men  died but the Black men”, the old man clarified.

Confirming what Pa Daboiku  said, Johnson said  ” many who rode on  motorcycles going there to have a look at the head  had accident and died at Obukele , in Owo, some died in  motor accidents”, Olu  too corroborated what they said , he added ” Many died on their way to Ipele to watch the scene. It was an unforgettable incidence for  so many people  perished on their way to and from the scene died.

IYALAJE FAMA   says Aramatu should be honoured

THE SINGING HEAD

While the body was exhumed and cut into pieces , investigation report said that some men took parts of the severed body away possibly to use them for other things . Later rumour went round that  Aramatu’s severed head was bought by a white man who took the head away  secretly . According to rumour the  White man who bought the head could not keep it any longer as he said the head used to sing at night and the buyer had no choice than to  return it back to the man that sold it to him.

An old man who begged for anonymity said ”the head of Aramatu was bought by a white man and only God knows why and what he wanted to use it for , anyway, he was said to have returned the head saying the head was singing every night, disturbing him .Thus another news broke in.That was how the secret of the whereabouts of the head leaked out.

But Pa Daboiku confirmed  it and said “I learnt that those who bought the severed head returned it ,” but I did not see it o”.

ARAMATU’S HOUSE

On whether the house  where she was buried is still there , Pa Daboiku said , ”the house where the body was exhumed is still there till now. The house where she was buried at first is still there till now  .It was the Ugbamas who took away the corpse  for reburial after rituals and sacrifices were offered and since then we have never experienced such  thing  in this town again.The story is real” , the old man said , shaking his head.

Asked whether it was due to uncivilized life that made her corpse be exhumed and her body dismembered but he replied ”It is not because we were not civilized but  when a witch is disturbing the society the the body has to be taken away ”.

          Investigation revealed that the Igbo Omoba that  was once a thick forest  is no longer a forest  .The house where she was once buried was her husband’s house and is still there today and people are living there without any fear or being troubled .

          According to some sources, Aramotu was said to be of a good woman when alive and nobody ever knew she was such a powerful woman  again nobody has ever accused her of any wrong doing.

                         SHE SHOULD BE WORSHIPED

           Yeyelodu Awo and FAMA, an Onisese Orisa  who  lives in California, America  is a Nigerian-American. She is from Emure -Uli near Owo, Ondo  State.  According to her,  Aramatu was an heroine of our time but we failed to recognize, honour and appreciate her.

FAMA who was shocked to hear the story for the first time said ”If what I heard about this grand  mystery woman, now a super ancestor. If what I heard of her larger than life encounters and which you confirmed as a result of your investigative  journalism  about her  is true, she needs to be immortalized. What she did beyond her grave after death surpasses any of the Biblical stories I read as an ex-Christian (FAMA is an Ifa Priestess) as well as what  I heard from active Christians. Unfortunately, these same people, Christians, will classify her miracule after death existence as witchcraft. Miracles that I applaud. If it was witchcraft, then, it was a good,  powerful witchcraft”.

    The Ifa Priestess continued ” I pray and wish she will extend and bless me with such power in this 21st century life of insecurities. I need all the miracles I can get to help my people out of the wicked acts against them everywhere, everyday as well as for my own self defense and security.”

The highly respected Traditionalist who is well known in California said she will be coming to the ancient town of Upele to the graveside of this great  woman called ARAMATU.

FAMA was sort of upset as she asked ”Was she ever reported of bad behaviour when alive? We are blind as we don’t appreciate these people of high repute” she continued

”Moremi’s statute is presently in Ile- Ife today. Ogedengbe Agbogungboro was very powerful and his statute is in Ilesha till today. I believe one day Upele people will correct the mistake and honor her,” she said, adding that UNESCO is noted for  building monuments on  our world’s past great heroes, and Aramatu’s house and grave should become  monuments and tourist attraction for us all to know how powerful Africans are. We should look inward positively and stop vilifying our heroes and heroines.”

FAMA  however   compared Aramatu with her own powerful woman in her home town, she said there was also a powerful woman in her home town  Emure-Uli,   who was equally as powerful known as Mama Kaku who legend had it that she defended the town’s Ugbo oro (Sacred Groove) when a duo timber contractors were warned not to be desecrate  the groove with their  presence but they defied the  pleas and  paid the ultimate price for their defiance.

The America-based Olorisa said ”I am willing to go to the grave side of  Aramatu to honour and worship her.” She added ”if it is America they would probably turn to a point of interest as it might become a tourist centre. It’s painful that in spite of the fact that the  White men we do much like to imitate will not despise their own heroes but in our own case  we still look down on our culture. People like Aramatu should be worshiped. She is a heroine. I wish to go there to offer prayers and sacrifices.I will scoop the earth from her grave for a possible connection with her. If she can transfer her power to me , so be it. It  will be highly appreciated,” she told our reporter.

               STILL FEARED 44 YEARS AFTER

            Despite our efforts to interview some people on the story of Aramatu which happened in 1974 many still refused to talk about her even from her town. While many  begged this reporter  for anonymity. Even in the internet there is no mention of her name. She is even feared in death 44 years after. What a powerful woman!.

 

 

Please don’t publish this story now!

She  brought out a black colored animal horn-like object filled with red and white cotton wool , spat on it and muttered some inaudible words . …But don’t publish this story now!

                                                   
                              

           The old man  held his cigarette with his tiny fingers and coughed heavily. He  again smoked the cigarette then released the smoke into the air and it danced towards heaven .

        He  adjusted his rocking chair made of local fabrics and pleaded “please don’t publish this story before I die .If  you do and my son reads this he would know I’m talking about his mother and will not forgive me”. Again,he coughed heavily , spat brown colored sputum ( no thanks to his smoking) into a container kept by his side.”Baba why don’t you stop smoking  as it contributes to your coughing”, I said .The old man looked at me with disdain , shook his head , and responded ” I have been smoking before you were born. I am 85 years of age and if I had wanted to die through smoking I would have died , and besides that it is not what I called you for”. I am sorry Baba, let’s continue our business at hand, I pleaded.

     ”Now ,  on your  recorder, take your pen and paper and start writing this story” , he ordered . Since I got a good story I brought out my camera and quickly  took good  shots of him  .He warned ” Ha!, please don’t use my photograph , delete it from your camera , don’t let me curse you and don’t ever be tempted to use it in your story” , he warned  again.

” It was during the raining season “, he started his story, “I was going to a friend’s place and along the way I was drenched. I ran into a kiosk  for cover not only  from the rain but from thunder and lightening and also to keep warm. The woman who was my cousin’s wife and owner of a nearby shop was magnanimous enough as she pitied me and asked me to come into her beer parlor to wait until the rain stopped.I met about six people there who also ran there for cover .In that beer parlor there was another inner room and after some minutes I was hearing a familiar male’s voice.

”I overheard their conversation ‘ you cannot go out now to ease yourself , people are there watching. Baba Lekan is there , please don’t let him know you are here ‘.

”When the rain stopped and everybody left but I didn’t. The woman asked me to leave but I told her I wanted to buy a bottle of beer , she asked  me to take it home, again I demanded for a shot of a local gin , Ogogoro . Curiosity took over me as I wanted to know who was in the room.

”I wanted to be sure of  the owner of the  male’s voice .The more I advanced into the room the more the man screamed of wanting to urinate .Time now was 12:05 am .Pretending as if I was drunk I shouted ‘Baba Segun what are you doing here at this time of the day?’. He first pretended as if he did not hear, then I repeated  my question again and said ‘it is me , Lukman your cousin’. The old man began to stammer, tried to explain why he was there.  The woman too ran to me , knelt down and begged me not to expose her, she even asked me not to pay for what I bought .

”The woman, we called Mama Kudi was a wife to Baba Segun’s younger brother (Ibrahim ),and has been having an affair with her. Baba Segun was my big uncle , he was a younger brother to my father , that means I am very young to the two of them .Then I was in my 30s and has just returned from the East after the Nigerian Civil war.

”One Sunday morning I was at home still a bachelor when Mama Kudi came to me , she went on her knees , begged me not to tell anybody about the affair she was having with Baba Segun .She brought gifts.I didn’t tell anybody for a very long time while Baba Lekan did not stop going to her shop.

”Mama Kudi  gave birth to a bouncing baby boy few months later .The baby looked exactly like Baba Segun but the old woman kept it to herself . I stopped going to her shop. It was while playing the Yoruba Ayo  Olopon game when more stories started unfolding. One of the players told the story of how the British came to rule Nigeria, how the country was faring  in the 40s .Another man narrated  the story of how one of his colleagues stole during the war  , War stories,  gossips of people’s affairs , and stories where Ayo game was being played .

”I started going to Mama Kudi  telling her how I knew about her sexual escapades and she too would be begging me by giving me free drinks. It became my habit. One day I told her that I wanted to sleep with her or else I would expose her, she shouted ‘what is my secret? Tell me’. Thinking I would talk about Baba Segun or  the bastard child she had , “No ! “. I now told her how she poisoned her husband’s brother  because he caught her in an hotel with another man in 1970 after the war when men were scarce as many had died in the war. She was shocked , she screamed. She   knelt down and begged me, but I insisted  but on one condition, I should  have sex with her .She pleaded  but I was already high and dead drunk and wanted to have my way. She knelt down and begged me three times and that she was still menstruating and  in her ovulation period in her mid 50s and could get pregnant. She said she had become a pack of mockery everywhere for having four  children for two different men and it wasn’t her  fault. She reluctantly accepted the offer that night .

BoN

        ” While both of us were still naked  and in bed on that  morning, she brought out a black colored animal horn- like object filled with red and white cotton wool , spat on it and muttered some inaudible words. She later brought out a container and emptied her urine on me and said   ‘You , Lukeman you will live long if I should get pregnant but no matter the amount of water you drink you will not be satisfied until you taste a woman’s urine .And if I don’t get pregnant but for forcing yourself on me because you know my secret you will weep towards the end of your life. But don’t publish this story now.

”I dismissed her words with the wave of the hand.

”In 1972 I did London GCE/ CAMBRIDGE. I passed courses in Accounting and became an Accountant and was doing well in a British Company in Lagos.

”I have six children from three women .But each woman left one after the other because of my strange behavior ”.

            As the old man got to this point , he gave a heavy sigh and warned again” please do not divulge this secret until after my death. Play the tape for my children if they doubted your story “.

On the 23rd January 1998 my last wife with her daughter packed out of my house and never returned till  this day .It was that same reason why my two wives packed out that made me to almost be lynched in 2010.

             He continued ” Despite the fact that I am rich. I didn’t construct or build modern toilet     ( WC) instead I use pit toilet. I have been using pit toilet for a very long time. Anytime my wives and their female children urinate in the potty I would pretend as if I loved them and would take the urine pretending I was going to empty it in the toilet but would empty them in  green bottles , put them in the fridge. Many thought it was beer.

”One early morning Tina and her mother tip -toed and caught me red handed .That was the last day I saw them as they accused me of trying to use them for money -making ritual and to prolong my life. All efforts to explain to them failed.

           ”Now , on the 23rd of May 2011  I had been used to some brothels where I paid for a prostitute to be assisting me of  her colleagues’ urine at the popular area of Ayilara .I paid the prostitute who had been my customer for a long time very well and she had been bringing me urine , not knowing she was being monitored by her partners . One day she was caught while handling over a bottle of “beer” to me .Immediately I took the two bottles from her. All her colleagues who had been hiding and trailing us pounced on me and beat the hell out of me.They sent for my children who came to bail me out at the police station.The day was a bad day when I was rescued from the angry mob, accusing me  of  trying to use human urine for sacrifice .No, it wasn’t so. The fact is that anytime I am thirsty and drank water I would be more thirsty until after drinking woman’s urine before I am satisfied and relieved .

”I had gone to several hospitals but no solution, In fact herbalists and spiritualists  had no effect. I was asked to go and beg the woman who did it , but she died immediately after childbirth, for according to the doctor she should not have had child at that age.

”The baby boy she had for me was raised by her mother’s family , but I sponsored all his university education.

”When the rumor spread out that I was into money -making ritual I denied it.  I even swore that it wasn’t so, but couldn’t tell them the above story .In fact my last wife left me when she caught me drinking her urine.

”The child that Mama Kudi had for me and two others another woman are the only surviving children . Three other children are no more , while one was lost and never seen till today the  two others died in a fire accident .

       ”Please publish this story after my death . Let the boy and the whole world know that I was not into any ritual”.

NB: The Old man has died and has since been buried  not too long ago.

We have changed names and places.

PLEASE LEARN FROM THIS STORY .IT IS REAL.

SHARE, LIKE, SUBSCRIBE  AND COMMENT ON THIS STORY.

 

 

Remembering Sheila Solarin

     Remembering  Sheila Solarin (May 31,1924 – Oct. 21, 2012)

               Tai was my greatest motivator

              From the first time I met him in 1947

              Till his death in 1994

              If more people had listened to him ,

              Nigeria might have made better progress

                                                                                    Sheila Solarin

 

                   At the school gate I asked whether I could see mama . “Yes, she is there go and meet her “, the security officer  replied .I walked down to her house  which was about 20minutes walk I got  to her residence , a bungalow  that has  no fence and no security personnel. As I met  one of her maids, a Togolese and told her I wanted to see Mama then  I   heard a soft-spoken velvet voice saying ” Tell Taiwo to come in, let him come in “, that was Mama, she recognized my voice because I had been used to the family .

The late Sheila Solarin and Taiwo Abiodun

” Stand up, stand up Taiwo “, she urged me as I prostrated to greet her.  Immediately the giant domestic animal sighted me it started barking  but Mama  patted the  lovely dog, Rosa to  stop. ” Mama I am here again for interview”, I told her. ” Ask your questions”, she responded .
          In order to make my story unique I demanded to see the late Tai Solarin’s ‘war clothes’, she did not argue as she went in and brought the khaki shirt and shorts and I took the photographs . I asked questions and she was not tired to answer .She did not say my questions were foolish as I asked from relevant to irrelevant

I asked how she felt about the former Head of state who incarcerated her husband and whether she has forgiven him for what he did to her , the old woman looked down, shook her head and said ” whether I have forgiven Babangida? Well, he contributed to the poor health condition of my late husband until  he died .What type of forgiveness is that ?.My husband was detained several times for saying the truth and looking for a better Nigeria , was that an offense?”

Asked to talk about Nigerians , she said ” Nigerians are hard working and ready to work if there are jobs as they could cope anywhere in the world .But where are the jobs ? .I am more concerned about the youths ” , she said . “Mama, can I see where Tai Solarin was buried ?”, I asked , she rose while her dog, Rosa ( who has become her companion ) followed us and we got to the place , I took a lot of photographs.

On a personal note since we had become a family and she asked after my welfare, family and how I was faring in journalism profession , she said ” since I know many of these media don’t pay very well”,but I told him we were being paid as at when due where I worked. “Oh, I love you for saying the truth , that is good and that means things are changing “, she responded .

I asked why she preferred Audi Car product to other products ( As I could see many used ones there) , she said ” it is a strong car”. Mama, I was told you have a Zoological garden , she said ” all schools are supposed to have , we have snakes , some reptiles and other animals there , go and have a look”, she said. Again I asked her whether I could interview Tunde, her son , she said ” Will he grant you interview? I know him, he would not”.

Mama who owns all these cows ? She replied ” they belong to my son, Tunde , I can’t be doing all these” . Later , she told me she was going to the class and I asked ” Mama , going to the class? ” , she replied” Yes, some of those I teach at home had just left .I teach English language .”

                 When I returned to the office , The Nation newspaper , the Sunday Editor , Mr .Lekan Otufodunrin was happy as he grabbed the story and gave me three pages , then gave me 2,000 Naira for a job well done .He splashed the photographs of the ” war clothes”  of the old ” soldier” on center pages of The Nation‘s newspaper . At another time I asked Mama why she did not go to church and she responded” This is 10 o’clock Sunday morning , why didn’t you go to church and waste your time? . Nigerians are full of hypocrisy .They should go out , work and assist people .They waste too much time on what does not matter” .

                       I once asked her about her big and frightening dog, Rosa ,” dead”, she replied. “Why didn’t you have a gate and fence round your house for security purpose?, she replied ” I don’t need that”. As I finished my interview she bade me goodbye and safe journey back to Lagos. But one thing I will never forget from the old woman is when she asked how I went to school and I told her that my older  brother , Professor Rowland Abiodun sponsored my university education from  undergraduate to the Post graduate level, she demanded for her e mail and I gave her, ” I will write him to thank him for I know what it is to sponsor  one’s education”, she promised

                          She asked where my twin brother was , and I told him he was far away in Canada, she said ” oh , I was there several years ago and that place is always cold .Is he a boy or a girl , are you identical or not , is he also a journalist? ” She asked me all these questions three years earlier and still remembered later.

                          Mama  was very articulate and has good retentive memory despite her old age . She once lectured  me about Cancer, as she said she once had cervix cancer when she was young but   was quickly detected and treated . ” So cancer can be treated if detected early”, she lectured me. She was ready to discuss anything under the sun and would not say it is private or take an offense. I remember when I asked her why she had two children, she replied “why do we need to have many?, what for?” She was truthful, faithful and straightforward to a fault. She was ready to tell the truth no matter whose ox is gored . I remember when she said ” when a man lies , he needs 99 percent of more lies to cover up the one lie he has lied” ( he was referring to a former Head of state ).

I became a friend to the family, as I had interviewed Corrine her first child before “. As we all remember Mama Sheila today , I remember her soft vspoken, lovable, cheerful, harmless, beautiful, dutiful and caring woman .I remember her golden framed- eye glasses , her hearing aids , walking stick, smiles, her golden hair, her clean feet in her beautiful sandals and of course the day she called me and said ” So you are Babalawo of The Nation?”, laughing. She gave me six books , I so much treasured and I kept them in my library in Owo, my beloved home town. 

The late Sheila was a British and wife of the late atheist, Tai Solarin .The duo established May Flower School , Ikenne in Ogun State and were both atheists.

Sheila contributed a lot to the development of education in Nigeria .She was always behind her husband who was always incarcerated because of her politicyal contribution because of his radical ideology.

As I was leaving Mayflower school and glanced at the  the iron cast sculptures of Sheila and her husband placed  at the entrance of the school I said, in spite  of being atheists they are still loved.For the duo or the Solarins  it is Veni, Vidi, Vici.

Memories , memories and memories .

We wept sighting the TITANIC Ship

 

LOOK AT  THE  TITANIC SHIP WHERE OVER 1,500 PEOPLE PERISHED IN APRIL , 1912

We  wept sighting  the  TITANIC Ship

As Ronnie and I were driving  from Westgate Branson Woods Resort hotel   down to the TITANIC  Museum  in  Branson to have a look at the historic but  the most devastating casualty  Ship, The TITANIC   that shook the world . I was excited as a journalist saying at last I would  see with my two  eyes the  ill- fated ship .I was happy on that morning  and I sipped my Cappuccino  coffee , and took my brandy along with me .Yes ,  we travelled from  St Louis to Branson in the State of Missouri in the United States of America , and for two weeks we were in Branson going from one place to another with my camera.

”Ronnie is that the ship?”I asked  , but she shouted at me saying ” Abbey why are you so anxious to see the ship?. We will soon get there”. Less than a kilometer  we were there!

BoN and Ronnie

”Armed” with my  Brandy  we alighted from the car but when I sighted   a white object by the ship , I  screamed ”Ronnie that is the evil iceberg !”, and tears welled down  my face.My face became  heavy .I shed tears. So this is the evil iceberg the ship struck and took away over 1,500 lives?, I said in a low tone. Seeing my swollen face , Ronnie cried ”Whaaaaaaaaattttttttt?. Oh  my God, so the story is true  after all. Abbey, Bobo T,T Bobo I cannot take any picture and I will not record anything”,she said  as  we both  broke down and wept.

Looking at the artistic  and well crafted gargantuan ship  with the operational  instruments  of which professionals from all fields  had worked on. I was in  deep thought of how it could have sunk in spite  the assurance that it was safe!. But son of man has forgotten that the ship is a replica of the sunk ship and that  she is not on the sea , and that the iceberg by its side is artificial . But the thought of those perished especially   the two lovebirds , Jack and Rose came to mind, and emotion took over .

 

The evil iceberg

On that fateful April 15, 1912, the news spread like wildfire that the Titanic  ship that one of its engineers once boasted that ”Even God cannot sink this ship” went down in  the  Ocean and sunk killing over 1,500 passengers including some crew on board  , off the coast of Newfoundland in the North Atlantic after hitting the iceberg where 2,240 passengers  and crew were on board.

In March 1909 the construction of the ship started and it was  completed with all necessary workable materials with many features and  engineers were full of hope that they had been successful in doing an excellent   job.

BoN by the ill- fated TITANIC  ship

 I went round to look at the words ”TITANIC” written on the ship.I  looked at the  evil iceberg and  I cried that this is  where the most luxurious cruise ship full with  people of different skills,status ,characters and background   perished .I cried that this was where Jack Dawson and Rose  DeWitt  met  and fell in  love   but  ended in tragedy . I cried that the Ship that took off   from Southampton, England  for New York never got to its destination.I cried that the evil   iceberg caused the disaster .I cried that the ceremonious ship spent only four days  from April 10 to April 14, 1912 to reach the destination of destruction!.

All efforts to go to  Newfoundland in the North Atlantic where the ship hit the iceberg and perished over 1,500 people failed as Ronnie refused to take me  there!.

Next time I will pay a visit to the site of the disaster and take the picture of the cursed spot.

Since August when we visited the Titanic I have been seeing  images of Jack and Rose in my dream.

 

Behold the grave of Ogedengbe Agbogungboro!

 

The grave site of the Yoruba Generalissimo, Ogedengbe Agbogungboro is an eyesore.

Inspite all his war exploits , his grave is unmarked.Taiwo Abiodun was there .

BoN and Chief Obanla IV at the graveside of Ogedengbe

He was a great warrior and known for his war exploits. When he was beheaded in the war front ,  he acted fast and  beheaded a woman , put her head on his neck  then searched for his own head, found it and  replaced it , then returned the woman’s head on her neck and the war continued!. It was  not a fiction, it was real. His war jacket was very, very heavy that two hefty men  cannot lift it up but surprisingly it was always hung on the spider’s web [ faran owu].

Imagine this scenario : When his  foot soldiers were weak and tired in the war front and the battle was hot   he   touched  the trees with his bare hands and the trees turned  to soldiers and the  fight continued . He appeared and disappeared at will  with his  magical power . He was very powerful as he shot arrows  from his house attacking enemies in the battle field without getting there. He was feared by the natives and non natives.He was honoured and respected. His eyes, hands,legs,  infact all parts of his body were instruments of war. This is ORISARAIBI OGEDENGBE AGBOGUNGBORO of Ilesha!

He was a chain smoker and was extra ordinarily  careful as he  always avoided being poisoned, he  used to  send  his wild dog to buy tobacco  from the market and  the dog must be greeted by all and sundry .And whoever  did not salute the dog will attract fine or punishment from the Generalissimo .According to stories , the dog was not seen again after Ogedengbe’s demise.

 

                                     Ogedengbe

According to High Chief Oyekanmi Ogedengbe Obanla  IV who presently  holds the tittle, he    said ” In Ogedengbe’s compound were  cell rooms where he used to punish his erred slaves in his courtyard.Not only this, he had some rooms where he kept his charms , juju , arms and ammunition , daggers, swords and other war materials . He  had specialized  heavy saucers he used to eat  from”.

He added ”The warrior had a big shrine where he worshiped before embarking on his war.He fought the Kiriji War allegedly caused by a woman”.

 

Some of his guns, swords

The High Chief took this reporter round the compound and some rooms , he said ”Some of the jujus and ammunition are still in some  rooms till this day, infact there are some objects you must not touch  and rooms forbidden to enter! .Some rooms have no windows.”, adding that  there are about four courtyards in the compound .However, one needs a torch light or a candlelight to go into these dark rooms, and some of the rooms look secretive and fearsome., but inspite all these , most of the iron and woods used for the building which could be about a century old are still strong .

  The High Chief put on the Warrior’s charmed ‘war clothes’ and said ” this is the war cloth and attached with all types of juju gourds.But the High Chief says he is not happy for the grave of the great Yoruba Generalissimo is not befitting.Asked whether he contacted the Government , he said ” the Osun State government promised to turn this place into a monument  while we are still waiting” .

 

        Ogedengbe Agbogungboro house in Ilesha     

 

    Ogedengbe’s Grave in the compound

A  visit to his grave site  in the compound  could make one cry as one would be surprised that inspite the fame, power and exploits of this  man called O SOKO EKITI, SOKO AKOKO (Husband of Ekiti and Akoko) his grave site is unmarked.

 

The heavy eating saucers he used

When he was being taken into exile by Captain Bower, one of Bower’s aides who came with him struck Ogedengbe’s second in command, Alimoro’s   head but the sword cut into pieces and Alimoro cut the aides’s hand .As Ogedengbe saw the hand  on the ground he picked it up , blew air on it and glued it back to the stump!

”We offered sacrifice every week here in the compound and worship Ogun , the god of iron called Iwude.

”We keep a monkey here called Gboroko Kapee for   a purpose,the late Ogedengbe had four, my late father Ogedengbe has three while my late brother Ogedengbe who did not live  up to one year  had also”. He spoke about the mystic behind the monkey, according to him a man once came here to harm my late father who was on the throne but the monkey started behaving strangely and attacked the ma , when he was searched we found charms he brought along to harm my father..Again a strange bird , an owl came here which is a bad omen and the monkey started screaming , a lovely person was reported dead the following day.

Gboroko Kapee

Asked where Ogedengbe’s charmed war cloth is , the man looked up and said ” sadly enough they took it away , however some untrustworthy fellows must have conspired for without that they couldn’t have taken it away.

His war jacket was very, very heavy that two people cannot lift it up but surprisingly it was always hung on the spider’s web [ faran owu]

High Chief Oyekanmi Ogedengbe Obanla  IV

The High Chief   said  ”War is a  profession that  runs in  our   family, many of  Ogedengbe’s grandchildren  are in the Military, Police among others”.

The late Chief Ogedengbe was born in Atorin , which is about 20kilometeres to Ilesha  in the present Atakomosa East Local Government area.His father’ s village was Oke Orisa Village.

He always floored his mates in wrestling competition thus he was given the nickname of Ogedengbe  while his  real names are Orisaraibi Apasanforijiwa.He was once captured and taken to Ibadan and that was where Basorun Ogunmola  they gave him facial marks in order to humiliate him .

On the walls of the living room are some old pictures of the great generalissimo with gourds ( ado and strings ) tied on them evidencing his  power, and also a photograph of some of his warriors. But the most painful aspect  of this story  is that of his grave  which is unmarked .

Is it fair for such a powerful man of high caliber, a Yoruba generalissimo to be forgotten despite all his exploits?

 

 

How I won Father’s Day’s gift

      Standing on the dais before a capacity of over 5,000 worshipers  I looked afar off , lo and behold eyes were fixed on me. If you multiply two eyes by 5,000 spectators that means about 10,000 eyes were focused on me and when you multiply  5,000 people by  their 32 teeth smiling at me then about 160,000 teeth were smiling at me too. Far away I saw the congregation waving their hands, shouting and congratulating me .There was  loud ovation as thunderous clapping  followed and the hall shook to its foundation.

The Pastor in charge , Greg Bruce stepped forward and threw a barrage of questions at me ” What is your name?. Where are you from? .Are you a resident, a citizen or a visitor ? ” . Eyes were fixed on me. I felt great. At that moment my voice changed , I became conscious of myself .Now I became bold and trust me (Bobo T, T Bobo, BoN). I stepped forward majestically as the over 10, 0000 waxed bulbs beamed on me with Photographers and video camera men clicking their buttons and flashing .I then knew I had become a celebrity. Beaming with smiles I adjusted myself as I denge, posed, and confidently replied ” I am Peter Abiodun, I am a visitor . I am a Journalist, a blogger of taiwoabiodun.com , I am from Nigeria”, again another thunderous ovation followed. With clenched fists I bowed and another deafening shout followed. And I laughed within me and told myself “Me Bobo T, T Bobo , BoN !”.

Ronnie,    BoN,  Pastor  Greg

The presiding pastor Greg announced : ” Congratulations, Peter winner of Father’s Day Competition! .After today’s service you should come for your prize, the 65 inches television you won”. Later we took pictures together with my competitor .

That was what happened on the 17th of June , 2018 when the world celebrated                        ” FATHER’S DAY” at 5555, Hope Church, Blvd. Suite 119 Hazelwood, MO 63042 St Louis, Missouri , United States of America.

Some senior officers of the Church congratulating me

On that Sunday morning, Ronnie was reluctant to go to Church as she said she was tired when she arrived from work late in the night .She later changed her mind and we both went to church .At the church the Pastor asked all fathers present to stand up and he prayed for us  all. He announced that there would be a competition and asked all fathers to write their names on the papers provided. More than 120 fathers wrote down their names and two names were announced , Peter Abiodun ( pronounced as Abodon) and another man’s name were called.” Abbey, that is you!, Abbey, that is you!!”, Ronnie screamed where we were seated. She then put her mouth into my ears , prayed for me and said ” Listen to their instruction, please go , I know you will win”, and I rose  and went to the podium where we were asked to play the basket ball. My competitor is a huge and tall man .After playing for 10 minutes the result was announced while my competitor scored 22 points I scored 28 .There was a  loud shout as they all watched the game  from the television screens positioned at different locations in the big church.

As the giant hifi speakers strategically located in the church were blaring music  while the over 50 powerful electric bulbs beamed on me .There was another loud screaming of joy that could wake up the dead from the grave . When the American, a white man, Pastor Greg announced me as the winner, a loud ovation rent the air.

The giant 65 inches telly was put on a roller and pushed by two hefty men while I was being watched by hundreds of people who were shaking my hands and saying congratulations to me as it was being carried into Ronnie’s car. Again, eyes were fixed on me.I became a celebrity in St Louis , Missouri, United States of America and I smiled.

An old man who should be in his 80’s along with his wife approached me and politely demanded for my hand for handshake and said ” you are a lucky man”, I smiled again the second time. When we got home I forgot to eat but sipped my black coffee prepared by  Ronnie, “I am glad you won and this is the beginning of good things to come “, Ronnie said .

We unwrapped the television, looked at the giant television again and gave thanks to God.

Some hours later I sent text messages to many people that I had won a 65 inches television.

What a lucky guy I am. When I asked how much it could cost , a friend said its about 1,500dollars. Who says God is not good?

In the evening I took up the letter my brother , Professor Rowland Abiodun wrote to me recently that   “God loves you.  Always put God first in everything and He will do wonders”. I sent the pictures of the occasion to him in Massachusetts , Dr.Tayo Ojomo in Philadelphia, while his wife Mrs.Lorraine called and said ” I know you are brave , always optimistic and I love your courage”I also sent the photograph to  Mr.Olayinka Oyegbile ( Deputy Editor Sunday The Nation newspaper),  Mr.Lekan Otufodunrin( Editor), Mr Yemi Ajayi ( Head Computer section, The Nation on Sunday) and many others .

In the middle of the night I woke up Ronnie and asked whether it was a dream , but she replied ” Believe and trust God in everything you do.”

Then we went back to sleep while I was shouting “St.Louis,  Missouri I am here. America here I come .God I want more of this blessing”.

My mind tells me that more bigger goodies are still coming in Jesus’ mighty name .