Princess Jokotola Titilola Olaoba was born on October 2nd, 1940 to the Royal family of Late Chief Daniel Durojaiye Odusanya and Late Chief Mrs Emily Odusanya in Odosenlu Alaro,Ijebu Ode.
She had her Secondary Education at Adeola Odutola College, Ijebu-Ode and General Certificate of Education (Advanced Level) at Ibadan before travelling to the United States where she studied Secretarial Studies at Pittsman College, New York.
On 26th December 1960, she got married to her heartthrob Late Chief Babalola Olaoba and are both blessed with wonderful Children.
An astute business woman, anyway like a typical Ijebu born, Jokotola travelled round the country following her devoted husband who as a civil servant was being posted to different stations, and at every of such towns she set up thriving business outfits that endeared her to the minds of the indigenes.
A golden fish has nowhere to hide, in no time, the Nigerian Botttling Company, makers of Coca Cola brand approached her and eventually became a big time distributor.
A care and service giver, Chief Mrs Olaoba established Off Campus Hostel Services and the Kentol Restaurants.
Ageing beautifully and gracefully, Madam Olaoba won several laurels and honorary awards over the years.
Mama continued to serve humanity until she passed on peacefully on the 2nd of December, 2020.
Its really sad to see Grandma go, she was amazing and I remember meeting her for the first time. She was very warm and receptive. she touched lives and I am grateful for the opportunity to have had her as a mum-in-law.
A TRIBUTE TO MY BELOVED MOTHER, MRS JOKOTOLA TITILOLA OLAOBA
I was planning to visit you the first weekend of December 2020 without knowing that death had decided to snatch you away on Wednesday, December 2, 2020 shortly before my arrival. I was shocked, bewildered, pained and grieved because your death was not envisaged.
Now that you have joined your Ancestors and Creator, I believe in your overarching love, compassion and protection. Your passion for me to grow up in knowledge and understanding of life through quality education, entrepreneurial skills, social relations and spirituality to give me enabling energy, vitality, strength as I navigate the storming waters of humanity.
You were frank and caring as you infused discipline in my consciousness as a compass to move around the world. When I was wrong, you never spared me or turned a blind eye to truth and justice because you loved me. Rather you injected me with inoculations of truth, justice and fairness because they serve as balms to heal the wounds of broken relationships and restore mutual confidence and friendship.
When I joined my other siblings to celebrate your 80th birthday in Lagos it was fun to share your love for all your children and grandchildren both at home and abroad. You made calls to them to know of their well-being and encouraged them to remained focus in their various human endeavours. I thought you would live to witness the traditional wedding of your granddaughter, Temidayo Bimbola Ogungbemi who through your love and care she became an adult you envisioned for her. We also thought that you would share our joy and happiness when Tinuke Bisola Ogungbemi, you spent several months to assist us looked after when she was born, at her college graduation ceremony in the next few years.
As we celebrated your birthday last year we never thought we would be celebrating your life early this year. You have immortalized your-being-in this life by your impeccable legacies of love and kindness to me, which I fervently believe, will continue to resonate with all of us that you have left behind.
Mama mi oni nu’re
Sun re o
Bami ki Baba wa, oko yin, Chief Babalola Olaoba
Ke ma gba gbe awon omo yin o
Awa naa ko ni gba gbe yin
Fun ise ribi ribi ti eti se fun wa
Adieu, my beloved mother, Mrs Jokotola Titilola Olaoba
Mrs Olayemi Ogungbemi
My Dad told me my grandma passed away and that was really sad. But I always thought it funny when she called me mayoooor. My sister Fayo is her replica. God Bless You Grandma.
Everyone says I really look like my grandma and I smile like her. My mum said She has gone to heaven to be with God.
Jerusalem on high,
My song and city is,
My home whene’er I die,
The centre of my bliss;
(Oh, happy place!
When shall I be,
My God, with Thee,
To see Thy face?)
One of my momma’s favorite, which she used to sing sonorously and with that glee of accomplishments boldly seen on her face.
For Jokotola, the beat has stopped, same with the lyrics. And indeed she’s at the happy home of bliss, daily beholding The Lamb’s face.
Leaving us with sweet memories of your kind of ardent love and support for your children: Love me, love my dog, as you used to always say.
Yet you were such a hardworking and courageously bold disciplinarian. With the wisdom in your advices and virtues learnt in the stories of your life, you firmly implanted in us integrity, hard work and diligence, our DNA.
Up Mummy, you were an exemplary giver, always showing us that the true measure of a soul is not in the abundance of possessions but in giving selflessly to assist and lift those around us. Indeed Jokotola left an impact on every person that came across her path!!! Sleep on, sleep well Mom.
Barr. Olabode Olaoba.
Mum, I wish you could see all the messages pouring in from all the lives you touched and made an impact on while here. This makes my tribute to you a little easier to bear because you are exactly as described- generous, kind,caring, full of integrity and loyal.
The most important of qualities my mother had was kindness. Mum always show us that she genuinely love people and undoubtedly taught us its importance. She made it a priority to always be kind not because she wanted anything in return but being kind is the right thing to do.
Now that that you are no longer here, I’m sure you and Daddy a.k.a “My Dear” as you fondly referred to him are definitely catching up in heaven.
Rest on Mum.
Alero, Kofoworola and Diekololaoluwa (children of Kehinde Olaoba)
We all can shed tears that she is gone
or we can all smile because she truly lived.
We can close our eyes and pray that she’ll come back to us
or we can open our eyes to see all she has left behind.
Our heart can be empty because we can’t see or hold her
or we can be full of the love she shared and be satisfied with the great memories shared with her.
We can turn our back on tomorrow and live in yesterday
or we can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.
We can bitterly remind ourselves that she’s gone
or we can celebrate her legacy and memories.
Keep them alive in us as we pass it onto generations to come.
Seconds will turn to minutes, minutes to hours, hours to days, days to weeks, weeks to months and months to years but her persona will forever be cherished and will continuosly linger on in the hearts of many.
Grandma you were the epitome of Royalty and Uniqueness.
Grandma you are one special lady. You knew the secret to living a fulfilled life and you did so by giving yourself as a gift to as many lives as you could. You gave the gift of love, grace, positivity and kindness.
Though we miss you,
You live forever in our hearts and in who we are.
One memory my Siblings and I will forever cherish is when we visit or she comes visiting and when she spots us she starts singing her favorite Song
” Mo rire Mo rire
Mo ranu gba
O se mi lore
Mo rire gba
Mo more eeee
We Love you forever Grandma
A TRIBUTE TO MY MOTHER-IN-LAW MRS JOKOTOLA TITILOLA OLAOBA
My mother-in-law came from a noble, wealthy and influential home of Chief Daniel Durojaye and Mrs Emily Odusanya from Odosenlu Alaro in Ijebu, Ogun State. If death has humanity in-it-self, normally the life of my mother-in-law Mrs Jokotola Titilola Olaoba should have been spared as her name connotes.
If death has asked for ransom in order to spare her life, it would have been generously given with deep appreciation but that was not the case.
If death had considered the good deeds of kindness, generosity, honesty, integrity and spontaneity the life of my mother-in-law should have been spared.
If death had considered the number of her children and grandchildren that her departure would cause their sorrow, grief and pain with unsavory name as ‘motherless children’, perhaps it would have been unreasonable to escort her from their mist to the world beyond.
If death had realized how invaluable my mother-in-law had been to my family when we came back from Kenya in 1992 and when we had our second daughter in 2000 and her wealth of counseling on family relationships, it would have spared her life.
But death seems not to have any knowledge of ifs or respect for our desires to spare the life of my mother-in-law. Like all mortal beings we are all vulnerable to the whims and caprices of death. The Yoruba adage is apt when it reminds us that all of us wear the garment of death, meaning we shall all die when the time comes no matter who we are.
Mummy Ado, Grandma as we fondly called you, it is good night.
Iya oni nu re
Iya to se fokan tan
Iya Olayemi, Iya agba Temidayo Bimbola Ogungbemi, Tinuke Bisola Ogungbemi
Adieu, Mrs Jokotola Titilola Olaoba.
Prof. Segun Ogungbemi.
Evang. Odusanya Taiwo
Tribute to my sister….. She was my closest sister from the same womb. My mentor when I was young. So caring, generous and accommodating… but, can be unpredictable. Yet, I love her much…Rest on sister ( Iya Ado ) Till we meet to part no more….
Mummy no words LL perfectly describe your personality.True to the definition of a mother ,you stood tall .you were virtuous in all ways .words fail me as I perfectly cannot describe your person .you were selfless and set the right path for I am my siblings to follow .Thank you mum for beign such an exemplary example of not just birthing us but responsibly living the true worth of a mother .I live to celebrate the legacies you instilled in me .you stayed true to beign a woman and knowing how to be a beautiful one .I love and cherish you for ever mum . irreplaceable…that is what you are mum .keep resting in the Lord while I keep living your values .bye till we meet again mum.
Tribute to my one and only mother Bola Sola-Babalola
Quoting from an unknown source, it has been said that “life doesn’t come with a manual, it comes with a mother” but mummy, Chief Jokotola Titilola Olaoba, you were not only a mother, you were also the manual from which all of us (your children) learned the golden virtues of life-the virtues of courage, unfeigned love, hard work, discipline, contentment, commitment to purpose and so on. So great was your love for your children that you took the pain to call almost all of us on the D-Day before you rode on the horse to glory.
I remember with relish how you trained and brought us up in love and yet you did not spare the rod on us when you needed to use it.
For this, I say well done. Your devotion and affection for your husband (our father) was exemplary and unparalleled and for this, I say thank you for being a good example.
It’s heartening to observe that the “spark of your light” traversed the confines of our immediate family and earned you the title of “Iya Off Campus” confirming the fact that you were a mother not only to those of us who emerged from your loins but also to others who needed your motherly love. From the day of your passing unto glory till date, messages of love and condolence have not ceased pouring in from those students at OAU/OSUA/UNAD now EKSU who were lucky to have a feel of your love.
Considering the fact that you lived the good life, I choose not to mourn but to heartily celebrate you my sweet mother. Sun re o.
Grandma, I don’t know what to say. I miss you so much, I miss your voice, I miss your praises, I miss your prayers over me, I miss your laughter. I miss having my grandma. I know you’re in a better place with Grandpa and I know you’re no longer in pain but I can’t help but wish you had stayed for a bit longer so I could’ve seen you one last time.
Grandma lived a life full of joy and happiness and was always surrounded by people that loved and cared about her immensely. Whenever I think about her I think about how funny, smart, caring and loving she was to her children, her grandchildren and anyone else that was put under her care. She travelled from Ado-Ekiti to look after both me and Ladi as I’m sure she did for all my cousins. She taught me a lot when I was little like how to cook indomie by myself and how to dress mysel for school. I wished so badly she could’ve come to London to live with us too.
Grandma I miss you so much and I always will but I have so many fond memories of you and I’ll always think of with a smile. Rest easy grandma the pain is gone now.
Eulogy to my dearest Mum Ayotunde
Mum… Thank you very much for birthing me into the world. I remember vividly all the sacrifices you made for me and my siblings. You nurtured, worked and labored to ensure we all your children become successful in life. Growing up for me and my siblings was fun with you, telling your life’s story and how you met Dad. You were very strict and do not spear the rod when we are wrong, correcting us with love especially when you come into our rooms to pick up all your coke bottles. You took care of Dad well and be with him till the end since you were married for over 55 years. You’re beautiful in and out, strong, energetic, selfless and caring. I can’t forget how neat you’re with your clean hand and toe nails that looks naturally like a French tips. She loves her children and grand children so well and always checking up on everyone of them. Mum took care of other children as if they’re yours. I was planning to give you a surprise visit this year not knowing that you won’t wait to see me.
Since Dad demise 4 years ago, you’ve not been yourself since then. I know fully well that you’ve seen “My Dear” as you and Dad fondly call each other.
Thank you for been a wonderful Mother to me, my siblings and Grandchildren. Am not mourning you but thanking God for the good and beautiful life you lived. I will always love you. Rest in Power!
Tribute to Mummy Jokotola Olaoba by HRM Oba Ibikunle Olapade Adekanye.
Madam Jokotola Olaoba is a God sent human being to me .I knew Mummy in the year 1971 when i was a staff of Union bank Lokoja .Mummy is a kind generous woman in her life time .She could satisfy the last kobo in her purse to make others happy. She took me as her brother and this was how she introduced me to everyone that we came across during her life time. This woman is an Ijebu woman why iam an Igbomina man.This woman is my benefactor. I can critically say this woman is the architect of what i am today .Alanu mi ni Mummy Ado the name i used to call her .Awon omo tire na yio ba alanu pade amin ati ase .May her soul rest in perfect peace amen. Kabiyesi Alaran Of Arandun.
Tribute to my thespian – Dr Ampitan and Family
Long have I lingered in pondering on the best lines to capture the life and times of my mother (Jokotola Olaoba), words have failed as nothing can and would ever do justice to my testament of the life and times of one life so full it spilt over into mine.
I write not as an obligation as is the customs to say good of the departed, I write as a son, a deserted and disappointed pilgrim but non the less a grateful witness to the life of my Venus ( my goddess of immense objective and subjective beauty)
I knew Joko as a MOTHER among WOMEN, strict, unwavering and apt in discipline but infinite in her immensity for love, compassion, sacrifice and forgiveness. Never seen or heard her say or do anything inimical to her children.
As a wife and help mate of in legendary matrimony that lasted for over half a century, her marriage is to me the vivid imagery of scriptural, cultural, humanistic and existential ethos of how never to give up, to love without expectations, protecting your partner no matter the plight and bear disappointment admirably without grudge. Joko walked me through my marriage at it’s toughest so far, and what’s more? She will continue to be a record to break for my wife and I.
On interpersonal relations Joko was a surgical and clinical dissector of rifts and grievances ably ready to defuse the most intense pandemonic cacophonies with few sage utterances leaving all parties departing as grateful winners.
At work you were the best, in organization I find non to compare, in cleanliness you were the ivory.
The rest of my life will never be enough to say enough about my Joko ( I total misunderstood your name Joko “stay” for your immortality, sadly I was wrong). I will however keep the memories of you undimmed before the breaking of the world.
Joko, loving you will never be enough, gratitude won’t ease the despair and bitterness of your passing. I must however conciliatorily revel in the knowledge that you are in a better place and the notion that heaven is an assured destination for you.
I will see you when the applause stops, curtains down, lights out and spectators are gone.8
It’s been my life’s honour to have shared the stage with you Jokotola.
Dr Ampitan and Family.
TRIBUTE TO A LOVING MOTHER OLADELE OLAOBA
Mummy, the news of your sudden demise was received with a rude shock and the pain still linger in the hearts of we your children. You were a wonderful, disciplined and generous mother. The good lessons you taught us at childhood to be diligent would remain indelible legacy in our hearts. You were an epitome of caring and embodiment of aesthetic virtues. Mum, I cherish and appreciate your immense support accorded we your children towards achieving our goals and yarning aspirations in life. You came to this world, you did your best but death which is inevitable snatched you from us. Leaving us at this time is painful but we take solace in your good steps on the sands of time which you bequeathed on we your children. We love you but God loves you best. Adieu mummy…..OLADELE OLAOBA.
Commiserations to the family. Never forget her. I came to Ado-Ekiti as a 15 year old, never left Lagos before. We were about to forget my admission and drive back to Lagos when we spotted off campus. My mum was so happy that she left me in the care of Mama off campus. Lovely woman.
Mama was a quintessential mother. Each time i came around to the off- campus site – the loving warmth of a mother she reflected is so indescribable. May the good Lord comfort you and all those she left behind.
Knowing that Mama was there for one gives one confidence that you can never be stranded. She took us like one of hers. What a woman, what a mother! Can’t remember how many times I ate for free because she was a mother who read well the hungry countenance of a child. She would jokingly say ‘Mascot, ebi npa e, abi? Yetunde, lo fun broda e lounje’. She was always right! A couple of times, she paid my transport fare back to Lagos after I, Sola, Supo & Fela, with the connivance of Leko, Ade King, Bob K, Rotimi, Jumbo, Adams, Eke- the State House odarans, had ‘squandered’ our pocket money like prodigals. My consolation was that I kept my promise to come back to Ado to see her, which I did a couple of times. Mama rere, sleep well. May God keep the family you left behind. Kenny & siblings, be proud. Do no mourn, it’s time to CELEBRATE a mother INDEED.
Olumayowa Mascot Ijimakin
Accept my condolences. I recall my meeting her while in Abeokuta for a meeting and was at your hotel. She will really be missed. Rest in peace Mama. Eyin Mama ti dara.
Mama off campus has gone too,may her gentle soul rest in peace,Mama was a nice person to all of us in those days at Ado Ekiti,we thank God for a life well spent,and I pray that God grant the children and family members left behind the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss, Adieu mama,until we meet again where there shall be no more sorrow or departure but an everlasting joy.
Accept my wife’s and my condolences. Mama Olaoba was a great woman who became mother of many tribes through her kindness and good nature. We thank God for her life and for the seeds she bore. Our loss is heaven’s harvest. God will grant you and all of us the strength to bear her departure.
Thank you for creating an opportunity for this wonderful woman to know how much we valued her when she was alive.
Bar. Akeem Aponmade
Adieu!!! Mama Olaoba aka Mama Off Campus.
Most of us have personal encounters with her and the testimonies already posted can testify to that. We are glad that we had the Reunion in 2018 where we were opportune to meet with her not knowing it will be the last time. Mama was our Icon, a mother to us in a strange land. Many of us ate on credits that were paid later or never paid at all. Most of our guys drank beer on credit. She welcomed us with so much warmth and love, took care of some when ill and encouraged so many that had challenges in adjusting to the new environment then. She was a different person to everyone according to the need of the moment. Many character in one body…A Mother through and through. She created a university community for us out of an obscure environment. She gave us beautiful memories that remains fresh and indelible in our minds. We envy Kenny and siblings for being children of such a charming, beautiful and kindhearted mother. We pray that God will comfort and console the family and all Osuaites. Our mama is sleeping. We are not mourning. We are celebrating the great and wonderful life she lived.
OSUAITES BIDS MAMA OFF CAMPUS GUDNIGHT
It is with a humble submission to the will of God that I join us all to celebrate the life of a great mother of nations Mama Olaoba also know as Mama Kentol. No doubt Mama ruled our world like a collosus. She was class personified. She had a unique smile for all occasions. She was a mother to all during our University days.
I remember my last visit to her on behalf of this group and was shocked at her magnetic memory. She peeped from the famous off campus balcony and shouted ‘ManO War !! (My famous name) ku ojo meta omo mi , maa bo loke’. I marvelled at her magnetic memory at such a grand old age.
What more than for us to agree that Mama Olaoba came , saw and conquered . Such a personality never dies, they remain indelible in our hearts . Rest in peace , Mama Oninu ire.
Mother of Nations! Sweet mum who opened her heart and home to all.
The only reason I was allowed to attend OSUA was her reassurance that she would ensure my well-being.
The only other time I’d being in that environment was very traumatic due to bullying! Therefore, this time around, I was scared, afraid and wary of my surroundings.
However, this woman took me under her wings and nurtured me.
Mummy I’ve never forgotten you, I had plans for you!😢
Thank God OSUA Connection celebrated her and gave her the honour deserved at our last Reunion!
Deepest Condolences Kennie.
-Adeola Fayemi Fashubaa
I AM OTUNBA MRS BUKKY OGUNMODEDE AND A FIRST COUSIN TO…
MRS JOKO OLAOBA. WE ARE DESCENDANT OF FAMILY OF OKUNOWO FROM ATAN IJEBU. SIESIE JOKO AS I USED TO CALL HER IS A SENIOR SISTER TO ME (9 MONTHS OLDER)THAN ME.WE WERE VERY CLOSE. HER BEING MARRIED TO EKITI MAN MADE ME FOLLOW TO
MARRY AN EKITI MAN FROM ADO AND OYE EKITI. SHE WAS A SIMPLE, QUIET LADY AND AN INTROVERT IN CHARACTER.SHE LOVED ALL HER CHILDREN AND MADE SURE THEY ARE ALL WELL EDUCATED.
MAMA OFF CAMPUS, SHE WAS LOVED BY STUDENTS FROM ONDO STATE UNIVERSITY THEN.WITH ALL DELICIOUS FOODS THEN BECAUSE SHE WAS A GOOD CATERER BEFORE SHE RETIRED AND SHE TRANSFERRED THE JOB TO ONE THE BEST LADY WHO HAD WORKED TIRED LY WITH HER. ONE OF MY CHILDREN NAMELY OLUMUYIWA WAS ONE THE BENEFICIARIES OF HER WHILE HE WAS LIVING AT OFF CAMPUS. SHE NEVER TAKE ANY RENT FROM HIM, EVEN SHE STILL OFFER THE BOY FREE FOOD. ANYTIME I FEEL UNHAPPY I USUALLY DRIVE DOWN TO ADO EKITI. AFTER DISCUSSING ABOUT OUR
SITUATIONS CAUSING OUR UNHAPPINESS, WE DO ADVISE OURSELVES. THEN SHE WILL PREPARE IYAN AND OBE EFO.LATER I DRIVE BACK TO OYE EKITI IN A HAPPY MOOD.
SHE IS AN INTROVERT BECAUSE SHE FOUND IT DIFFICULT TO TRAVEL TO ANOTHER PLACE. I AM THE ONLY EXTROVERT AMONG THE FAMILY WANTING TO KNOW ABOUT EVERYBODY’S STATE OF AFFAIRS.
HAH JOKO YOU LEFT ME WHEN I WAS NOT HOME IN NIGERIA.I HAVE BEEN UNDER LOCKDOWN IN LONDON SINCE LAST YEAR MARCH. IF I WERE AROUND WE WOULD HAVE SEEN OURSELVES BEFORE LEAVING THIS SINFUL COUNTRY. I KNOW YOU ARE RESTING AT THE BOSOM OF THE ALMIGHTY. MAY HE GRANT YOU ETERNAL REST IJN. ADIEU MY COUSIN JOKO. I WILL REALLY MISS YOU.
R.I.P. Mama rere. I remember her disarming smile and her wise counselling to us as students way back. 🌹
Somehow, she was mother to all of us. Very loving and selfless. I never saw her raised her voice or even frown at any student. Hers was a well-lived life.
May Mummy Olaoba’s beautiful soul continue to rest in peace.
She was our sweet mummy.
Kola Wilfred Ajumobi
Mummy Off- Campus….eyaa!
Mummy showed me much love. .. it was so comforting, being so far from Home.
She was a Mother, you are all Blessed…
May the Lord Comfort you all.
Mama rere, e sun re o. Amin
My Grandma was a woman full of loving deeds. She was very caring and supportive. I remember how she fondly calls me “Temidayo mi’’. She was so full of life, and I loved it. Although we are deeply grieved by her loss, I’m thankful that I was able to build wonderful memories with her when she was alive. I believe she lived a good life and she’s in a better place now. Her memory will surely bring joy and strength to our hearts.
Rest on Grandma.
Grandmaaaaaa I miss you soo much.Sometimes it feels so unreal that you not here but I just have to snap back to reality.Thank you for always frying chicken wings for me for breakfast everytime when you were with me in Lagos because your chicken wings is the besttt.You lived a memorable life and you can never be forgotten.I love you soo much and I know you are with your creator.Say Hi to grandpa for me because I miss and love him soo much.Till we meet again. Tinuke Bisola Ogungbemi
It’s my honor to tell you about the exceptional woman I call Grandma. I met Mama Jokotola Titilayo Olaoba through her children Wunmi, Bode and Iretioluwa their cousin. Mama was so caring towards everyone especially her children’s friends, she immediately took me in as a family member from the day I met her .Grandma had a knack for tidiness, you could see that in her neat dressing, the amazing way she keeps the house clean and orderly.
Grandma doesn’t waste time to boast about her Ijebu heritage, she would cook ijebu meals and serve you on her dining table then she would take time to lecture us on personal hygiene and fashion.That was the kind of woman she was, extremely motherly .I love you always Grandma, I cry as I write and wish you are still here with us feeling young and vibrant, I am also thankful to God for the wonderful life you lived. Thank you for the love you showed me and the life lessons I will never forget,I miss you.
Goodbye Grandma. Yewande Egbeyemi.
MUMMY OFF CAMPUS; MEMORIES TOO INDELIBLE TO FORGET YOU – GOODNIGHT MUM.
Mummy Off Campus, Odaaro.. ki Olorun so wa. This was not just a phrase.
It was a phrase that I got used to from my biological mother Mrs Joan Daramola to my second mother Mummy Olaoba because I heard this almost every day of the week, all through my days in the then Ondo State University, Ado Ekiti.
Yorubas have a saying that only two eyes deliver a child, numerous eyes would usually wean and raise the child.
That was my story growing up.
As Bode reminded me of this tribute to my Mum, Mummy Olaoba, I kept drawing a blank because I have too many things to say as different memories cascaded into my head.
The Olaobas and Daramolas are not family friends but real families bonded and bounded by a lot of things, few of them will include, the Patriarchs of both families Chief Olaoba and Chief F.A Daramola were distinguished civil servants; both gave their lives to a career that they loved i.e teaching , both ended as School Principals and retired as distinguished gentlemen.
Then came our Mothers, their wives both unfortunately now late, Mrs Daramola who passed on in 1995 and Mrs Olaoba who just passed on, both were entrepreneurs, hardworking home makers too, both had restaurants and fast food store on the University campus at inception and a branch outside of the campus.
Both mothers were beautiful physically; and pretty in their hearts and lovely in their souls on the account of the care they extended to the sons and daughters of many whose Parents they never met, but adopted as their children and cared for them like their own .
I will come back to this .
We had and attended thesame family church, All Saints Anglican Church Opopogbooro, Ado Ekiti, where incidentally Rev Laitan Olaoba one of the Sons, used to serve,
Lastly one of my closest brothers ever, is an Olaoba, who unfortunately had passed on, is a guy, that we did a whole lot together, we both shared two names , Olanrewaju and Abimbola.
Not to talk of my my first Personal Assistant, one of the closest to me then and even till now, in person of Barrister Bode Olaoba, ESQ. then came Kenny, not a socialite and extrovert like me and Lanre back then; but a studious bookish guy with whom we worked on a major project and indeed the sterling Sisters Tunde , Yemi and Bola.
So putting a tribute together on Mum remains a big deal for me.
As I put this together, I remember her warm and reassuring embraces that only real mothers have and could give. Oh mine…so I won’t have those again, now that my two Mums are gone..
When I heard that Mum, who had all the while been holidaying nicely in Lagos had requested to return to Ado Ekiti, my gut reaction to Bode was why? Knowing that Mum was a love “stricken bird”.
She loved her husband and stuck to her like a hermit and attached to her kids like a kitten.
Couple of years ago, when Daddy Olaoba passed, my first reaction was how would Mummy take this hit? I am aware of how they were such a love bird for all of the time that I had known them for.
They were love birds, I don’t have the details of their love story but the bond between them was audible to the deaf and undeniably visible to the blind.
I recall how inseparable they were in those days, either of them you see, be rest assured the other was within earshot.
The love and bond grew with their ages, so when I learnt that Dad passed, and then Lanre who she loved to bits, I knew we had an issue on our hands .
Their love must have inspired me way back then as I cut my teeth in matters of cupid.
Two years ago or thereabout, the old students Alumnae of the then Ondo State University, OSUA Ado Ekiti, as the State University was so called then now EKSU, particularly the members of the first to the fourth sets deemed it fit to honour Mummy for her roles in the making of these now grown up Men and Women, who were boys and girls some thirty something years ago.
I dare say only a few of these guys went through that University at those heady days without a taste of the mother’s affection from Mummy Off Campus in one form or the other.
If you were not staying in their palatial residence that served as the very first affordable accommodation of choice for students named “off campus “, you would have eaten at Mummy’s restaurant on campus at midday, wether you had money to pay or genuinely didn’t have to, while making excuse of the forthcoming visit of your parents or guardian(by the way she made one of the best Jollof rice ever).
If you did not have that indulgence in any of the ways mentioned above; you would have had the benefits of privileged advice of the “mother hen” to ward off predators I.e (the harebrained cassanovas), as she often did to girls who had the first right of refusal to their facility now turned to Student’s accommodation.
This was how Mummy became so popular among every student that attended the University from 1988 to early 2000 and by extension how she acquired the ubiquitous name of “MUMMY OFF CAMPUS” .
It’s noteworthy to say in spite of the primus status of the facility, offering the best in comfort, convenience , safety and closeness to the campuses spread between Christ School, Ado Ekiti ; Ajitadidun and the School Administrative building that belonged to Chief Ajayi, the Great Odole of Ado Ekiti, “off campus” was very student pocket friendly, the Olaobas were not shylocks, Mummy as the business person supritended, she was more concerned with the welfare of “her wards” more like her children” over and above the bottomline and pecuniary gains.
Because of this manifest care and concern over and above profits, the real parents were more comfortable to hand their children over to “Mummy Off campus” for their children’s wellbeing that ranges from from safe keep of their subsistence or living allowances, if anyone had issues with the school authorities or lecturers, to prompt intervention by way of prompt medical attention and first aid care when they take ill and indeed to help them heal particularly when the girls suffer a “heartbreak” after the “Jambite rush” Mummy was the go to person, the “love doctor” to help them heal the broken 💔hearts.
Staying at “Off Campus was like home from home, Mummy made it so.
Mummy knew who was dating who? She Would notice when the hitherto well known boyfriend had taken off or playing two matches at thesame time; home and away, trust Mummy to know, and to raise a red flag if the dalliance was heading for the rocks. Not in an “Amebo” or nosey manner but out of the depth of affection that oozes out of her.
At the time, staying at Off Campus was a “status symbol” for students in those days, the only students residence that got new coat of paint ahead of resumption of returning or fresh students, it topped the list of the residential locations for “hot babes” and “happening dudes” in the University back then.
It was under this circumstance that I met my first love on campus who resided at the Olaoba’s off campus accommodation by the name Jessica, our love life was styled after the celebrities of today, enough to earn me “loverboy on campus” by the campus gossip magazine. My sweetheart lived in that Off Campus facility of the Olaobas.
I was so in love with her that Daddy Olaoba named me ” Lawrenzo” citing a Shakespearean work that had the story of two love birds by the name Lawrenzo and Jessica.
I never had a chance to read the book , but anytime I showed up at “off campus” by day after classes or when I “stab” or night, and Daddy Olaoba sighted me drive in my father’s Peugeot 504, I am sure to hear Lawrenzo from upstairs, which was like telling me that I know you are here.
An incident happened that I will never forget that further brought the perfect doting mother confirmation and identity out of Mummy Off Campus. I will come back to this.
This is apart , all my escapades, i e sneaking out with my father’s car to pick my first love on campus and going to parties outside of Ado Ekiti with my daring buddies, sometimes to gigs in Akure or to see SCALA musical concert in University of Ife, only to be doing dare devil speed to get back home before my parents would wake up, all of these times , Mummy Olaoba knew and indulged me and Lanre her son, one of my partners in Stunts taking; not for once did she blow the lid or snitched, she NEVER told my Mum who she saw everyday of the week; both of them had business concerns on the campus. She kept my BIG and little secrets.
Sometimes when I saw both of them together gisting in either of them’ s shop , I ll be ready for the worst, with my heart in my mouth, chest vibrating so fast, only for me to get there and nothing would have gone down, oh Mum had my back.
One day, I over reached myself!
We had gone on another of such cruise only to get back so late in the wee hours , as I rushed to drop off my sweetheart, the gear still engaged in (1)instead of reverse, I mistakenly stepped on the accelerator and before I could say lawrenzo, I had rammed the car into a part of the building .
Waoh, was i ripped? Sure bet.
I was distraught! Lost in thought of the struggle between what to tell my parents, getting home early and in good time to be able to figure out a plausible excuse and the cost of the damageto the building.
Long story short, everyone woke up and the drama, I just was ready for the worst.
Eventually Mummy came down and said Lawrenzo! Kilo de? Well I apologised, and said I will send bricklayers later in the day to come fix the damaged wall..
She just kept looking at the broken headlights and other damaged parts of the car and not the wall , then she asked me how will you handle this such that Daddy and Mummy won’t find out when you get back home and not once was there any reference to the damaged part of the building.
Well she told me to go home and that we ll see later in the day.
I succeeded in manufacturing a story for my parents and prayed that some sneaky hummingbird won’t burst it. I waited with bated breath.
Day 1, 2, 3, rest of the week till date nobody knew about the gist. I have Mummy Olaoba to thank for this and many more, not excluding taking care of my sweetheart Jessica and been a Mother to us all.
Mummy off campus made our early days in University community so convivial that proceeding on semester holidays was such a bother, we got emotional, often you saw the Ajebota girls shed tears because we were going on long semester holidays, you will find them in Mummy’s warm embrace usually before stepping into the cars that took them home.
Upon graduation, and when I went into my first preparation for election , she was so concerned about people and their deception, but she would smile and encourage me to stay strong, so when they did us in after winning the primaries in 2007, as we got set to go back to lagos with Bode behind the wheel, we stopped by to say our goodbye; she held me tightly and prayed that God will do right by us , it was an emotional embrace that I remember till date.
You cannot visit Mummy no matter how fleeting the visit may be, she will compel you to eat or drink, if you decline be sure when you are leaving she would have it packed for you to take with you.
In her restaurant on campus, she indulged me to no end, she would Lawrenzo where is Jessica, whenever I went there by myself, I got extra servings and she was always quick to remind the attendants of those things I do not eat!
Mummy I am sure had a hard time dealing with my brother Lanre’s passage and much later Daddy’s.
These were the reasons that made me feel keeping her in Lagos with the ladies and their families would sustain her chatty and hearty life.
I am at great pains to deal with the loss of Mummy at this time because having her for much longer would enable more people to appreciate her for the roles she played in the lives of so many people that came her way.
It is in the light of this that I celebrate the thoughtfulness and reflective depth of the Alumnae that deemed it fit to honour her while alive for the critical roles she played in moulding so many people who have turned out great in their own rights today.
Looking back today, it will be so improper to contemplate putting the story of OSUA then UNAD and now EKSU together without according Mummy a copious recognition deservedly so.
Her well earned place in the annals of history, for corporate existential support to the idea of a state University in Ekiti way back then, only few will know that availability of Student residences is one of the first boxes to tick on the checklist when starting a University.
Mummy in concert with her husband made that easy for the good take off of what is now known as EKITI STATE UNIVERSITY, ADO EKITI.
She led her family to sit fittingly in the class of High Chief Ajayi, the Odole of Ado Ekiti( the father of one of our great Alumni in person of JAHSBE) whose family gave the take off their building, which was the University’s take off administrative block.
Then High Chief Babatola, the Olora, whose family gave Ajitadidun, for the take off of classes for arts department, one of his sons JADE is also a University administrator today.
Then Christ’s School Ado Ekiti, where the Science faculty started from , and of course the Olaoba family who gave the all time, world famous Off campus as the foremost students residence helped in no small measure to get the University started.
Today, Mummy has joined the Saints Triumphant, having taken the trip that all mortals will take someday.
Painful as this will forever be, we draw fortitude and strength from the quality of life, strength of her indelible contributions ; a life of impact, an aura of warmth and love from the heart to all regardless of who you are or where you are from, to her humanity is the currency and love the lingua franca.
It pains to know that off campus will henceforth be without Mum, a paragon of beauty, soft spoken and ever so caring for everyone.
As we struggle with this reality, your memories will remain evergreen in my heart.
Rest in Peace Mum, and Convey my warmest love to your sister and friend as you reunite never to part at the feet of the Lord that you both knew and served.
Remember both of you never shut your eyes while you were here, please stay that way because “Oku Olomo kii Sun” your physical transition cannot obviate your affectation and affection even in death.
Rest in Peace , Mum.
Congressman #Bimbo #Daramola
Mrs Tinuola Idowu
E ku asehinde. May her soul rest in peace.
Very charming grandma!
Very elegant and beautiful woman.
Please accept my condolences. May the good Lord grant the family the fortitude to bear the loss in Jesus name.
At the time I met her, it was clear that she was a fashionista in her younger days…very neat and very sharp.
A no-nonsense Grandma indeed. If anyone kills even mosquitoes on the wall, Grandma will ensure the stain was scrubbed clean and sparkling!! She was really a natural disciplinarian and a kind mother…simple. Sleep on Grandma Olaoba.