Pa. M.A. Adeyoju was born on January 5, 1929, in Ijan-Ekiti in Gbonyin Local Government of Ekiti State, to the family of Adeyoju-Ipinjoyogbe. He was the second of eighteen children (10 boys and 8 girls). His parents, Ezekiel and Elizabeth Adeyoju were devoted Christians. Both parents held important posts in the church during their lifetime. He was baptized in 1940 at St Paul’s Anglican Church, Ijan-Ekiti.
His father made sure he had an early education because he witnessed the value of education as a result of his (Ezekiel) exposure to the reverence accorded people like Hurbert McCauley during his extensive travels in the Western and Eastern Regions of Nigeria.
Young Michael completed then “Standard Two” in Ijan-Ekiti under the supervision of the late Mr. Adepetu of Igbara-Oke (Ondo Province). He was also a houseboy to him. From St. Paul’s Primary School, he went to Emmanuel School in Ado-Ekiti where he completed his Elementary School Education. During this period, he was under the close supervision of a trusted friend of his dad: – Pa. Yesufu Akinrinmade of Ereguru Quarters, Ado-Ekiti.
In 1943, according to first-hand information I gathered from him, he entered Christ School Ado-Ekiti. That was the only Secondary School in Ekiti at the time. This was interrupted by a sudden sickness mid-way in 1943. He was forced to go home until he was completely healed and resumed in 1945. He completed his Secondary Education in 1950 before going to St. Andrews College for a two-year Teacher’s Training Education.
During his Secondary School Education, his academic achievements and leadership capabilities helped propel him to the post of a “Prefect” of one of the four students’ boarding house units in the school. From 1953 to August 1956, (according to a close friend of his—Dr. Akin Akeju of Ado-Ekiti) he taught English, Mathematics and Geography in his alma-mater:- Christ School.
From 1956 to 1962, Pa. M.A. Adeyoju attended Exter University in England where he obtained degrees in Economics and Public Administration. He was the first product of his town to attend and obtain a university degree.
From 1962 till his retirement in 1990, he worked with the Federal Government of Nigeria in various Ministries and Departments:- such as Population Bureau, (of which he was the first director), Economic Development, NNPC, Power Supply (NEPA) and Iron & Steel.
In 1963, Pa. M.A. Adeyoju married a beautiful lady; Rhoda Yetunde Kolawole from a famous pastoral family (The Rev. Kolawole) from Usi-Ekiti.
The union was blessed with five children. While the wife and the youngest child had passed on to eternal glory, with the Grace of God, the other children and grandchildren are here with numerous relations to give him a befitting send off to everlasting, peaceful rest in God’s Kingdom.
His early interest includes soccer, fishing, hunting birds with slings, reading and oral history. He used to be an active participant in the end-of-year theater show that budding educated elements in the town used to put up to entertain the town folks around Christmas/New Year in the 1940s to early 1950s.
One of the unwritten rules of Pa. Ezekiel, was that young Mike was not allowed to drink alcohol, nor have girlfriends until he completed his Secondary School Education. Our “Old Man”, made sure no one crossed his “Red Line.”
Notable Accomplishments and Contributions to the upliftment of Ijan-Ekiti
He was the first Ijan-Ekiti son to travel abroad to further his education. He was also the first to be appointed to Federal Civil Service. Pa. M.A. Adeyoju pioneering achievement in education is the tip of the iceberg among the positive roles he played during his lifetime. His parents happened to be the first of their respective mothers. They played the role of being standard bearers, managers, disciplinarian, safe haven for counseling, provision for emergency assistance, settlement of disputes etc. These knowledge and skills were passed on to young Mike very early in life. Thus, throughout his adult life, he generously helped a lot of people without counting the cost. Furthermore, a lot of people from Ijan used his house and or connections as a springboard for better careers later in life.
In addition, he contributed immensely to both St. Paul’s Anglican Church in Ijan-Ekiti as well as, St. Jude’s Anglican Church in Lagos, which he attended until his death.
Equally of note, is the fact that he with a few forerunners in the town (Ijan-Ekiti) helped so many young ones in their educational pursuits. He was responsible for the employment of scores of Ijan sons and daughters in the Federal Civil Service. He invested solidly in the human capital development of the town.
It was through his effort that electricity was extended to Ijan-Ekiti from neighboring towns. Besides, he was one of the founding members of “Ijan Progressive Union” which played a major role in planning development activities for the town as well as helping to resolve internal conflicts from time to time. He chaired the organization for four years in the 1970s. His vice chairman at the time was Mr. James A. Awomiluyi.
On or about early 1970s, he was instrumental in the establishment of Ogunmoriye Descendants Union, which is an umbrella body for his maternal relatives, for the purpose of promoting family love, history and understanding. He was the Chairman until his death.
Pa. M.A. Adeyoju enjoyed good comic jokes and varieties of good music and entertainment such as American wrestling as well as local comedy productions such as Baba Sala and Aluwe. The older ones were very fond of him because of his humility, knowledge of local and family history. He was regarded as an exceedingly kind, very generous, considerate, gentle, and trustworthy person by most people, who are close to or work with him. Above everything, he cared very much for his family and siblings.
Most of his former co-workers regarded him as very disciplined, transparent, and accountable Civil Servant. He had several opportunities to enrich himself and amass wealth, but he never did.
Pa. Michael or Mike as he was fondly addressed by those close to him, would spear nothing to take care of his family, parents, in-laws, and many others from his extended family.
We can say with pride that Pa. M.A. Adeyoju lived a good life and set many good examples that generations to come will hear of and or share with pride.
Mrs Abosede Adeyoju – Daughter in Law
You don’t hear too much about Father-In-law, but I must say that mine was one of the BEST! What made him so special in my eyes; was that he accepted me as his daughter and showered me with his unconditional love that had no ending. This is where my Father-In-Law stood head out above others. Daddy was a thinker!! A quiet man, who does not push himself on anyone, but did a lot for people without thinking twice. Daddy was a truthful father with a big heart and shared that big heart with all the people he had contact with. He taught his children to be responsible, hardworking, ethical, loving and to care about each other’s. Daddy you showed this love when you and mommy came to visit us. You both were so proud of us having our own successful business. Not only were you proud of us, but you both will get up at night to go clean office building with us and your comment was always “GOOD JOB MY DEAR.” and you were our Vacuum person (which father-In-Law does that).
I am touched by your selflessness and admired you for your sincere love for me as my father-In-Law and as the grandfather of my children. I am sure your spirit is still with us still, as many of your most wonderful traits are now part of what makes up my whole extended family. Thank you for the strengths that you had passed on to my husband, his sisters and me. Thank you, Daddy for being who you are. You will surely be missed, and your legacy will live on!!!
“Rest in the Lord.”
Sincerely Your Daughter InLaw
Mojola Adeyoju . Grand-Son
One of the memories I have of Grandpa was when Grandpa and Grandma came to the U.S and Tumi was just born. I would always wake up early before getting ready for school to go into Grandpa and Grandma’s room because Grandpa was always up early and getting ready for the day. Grandpa would always play with me when I came into the room. When he would watch the news, I would watch with him. When I was in Nigeria, he would come out to watch wrestling with me and my cousins. I could name so many things that I remember about Grandpa, but the one thing that I will always remember will be the last time he came to visit us, and he got to see the University I attend right now. He got to see where I live on the campus. I will always remember that. I can’t be sad that he’s gone. I am thankful that I got to see him one last time. I love you Grandpa and I will miss you.
Tumi Adeyoju. Grand Daughter
My earliest memory of my grandpa was when I was four. Him and my grandmother came to visit our family in Michigan at the time. Of course, I was excited. So much that my parents had to calm me down. But from what I remember, he was always wanted to be around me and my brother. When I watched TV, he was sitting on the couch watching it with me. When I was eating dinner, he’d eat dinner along with me. He would laugh and make jokes at what I was eating. Seeing it as it was always either waffles or pancakes. Nothing else, nothing more. I just remember him always being such a loving grandfather. The last time he visited my family was a couple years ago. And I remember we went to a clothing store with my aunties and my mom. I sat with grandpa in the furniture section. And the music that was playing made him like snap his fingers to the beat. And he was dancing a bit. I immediately recorded him because he started to talk about music back when he was my age at the time. A great memory. I luckily got to speak to him once more a couple months before he got really sick. It was on video chat, on WhatsApp. I was heading to work, so I had make-up on. And as I was speaking to him, he said “You look very beautiful today. You look very nice.” When I think back to that it really just warms my heart every time. I didn’t get to see him as much, but I know that my grandpa loved me very much. And I am going to miss him a lot. I’m just glad he’s at peace and with grandma.
THE PERFECT GENTLEMAN.
Daddy was an inspiration. A perfect gentleman.
I feel honoured to be married to Daddy’s most beautiful daughter Bolanle. Despite his soft-spoken nature, Daddy’s actions were of argenteous manner leaving a profound effect on all those he encountered.
As he traversed the world in its entirety, visualizing the multitude of nations, (Daddy visited over 40 countries in his lifetime on behalf of NIGERIA) He never forgot his starting point, IJAN- EKITI. Even his children could not understand his passion for IJAN- EKITI, but Daddy had IJAN in his blood.
Daddy’s memory will never ever fade. Daddy was not only a mentor to me, he was also…….and most importantly……..a friend. We all have no choice than to continue to uphold his stainless legacy.
Thank you, SIR, for all your support and inspiration.
May your sweet and friendly soul rest in perfect peace.
Deolu Ogunmilade, Grand-Son
My Grandfather’s checkered life has shown that in this lifetime, some people are wanted, and others are needed. My Grandad in his lifetime was needed to impact and influence some people’s lives in this world. A duty that he accomplished truly well. I celebrate my Grand-Dad for his greatness and his positive influence on the family. The few moments I spent with him will forever be engraved in my memory. Grandad was a great man who has been an inspiration to me personally and to us all. We celebrate you Grandad.
Michael Olaoluwa Ogunmilade – Grand-Son
From the inception of man, we naturally descend the banisters of life, until we all meet our inevitable eschatological fate. My grandad met that destiny on May 21st 2021.
A life filled with distinguished, inspiring, and memorable events, he has left behind a legacy that will never truly die, despite his physical ceasing to exist.
Even in the dying embers of his life there was a lesson to be learnt, don’t stop until it’s over. Keep fighting the good fight. I am led to Philippians 1:6 which states the following: “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.”
At 92, many would say my grandad was old. I like to say he was living his vintage and classical years in the song that is life. Prior to his song ending, I often thought he was motivated to surpass Methuselah but alas death met him, and he has returned to his maker.
As the curtains finally closed on a majestic existence, we thank God for his life and look back and smile with gratitude and reverence. Joy comes in morning and that morning has arrived as we celebrate Michael Abiodun Adeyoju.
Lemuela Fapohunda .. Grand Daughter
Grandad, thank you for all the memories you have gifted us, we will love, miss you & continue to make you proud. Lemuela
Oluwalonimi Fapohunda – Grand-Son
Even though Grandad is not here on earth he will always be in our hearts and memories as he is forever in a better place with God. I miss you Grandad…
Damilola Fapohunda – Grand-Son
“In loving memory of my granddaddy, we all know that God has blessed you with a full life. But granddaddy is not truly gone because his memory lives with us forever.”
Segun Ifedi – Grand-Daughter
My Granddad was cool.
He was the first to travel abroad in his village. He traveled to over one hundred different countries.
He went to the Johnson’s Space Center located in Texas and visited the White House with my late grandmother (jealous haha!).
He worked as a high-ranking civil servant in Nigeria and was known as diligent, honest and humble.
He schooled in Britain and behaved like an real British man till his last days which is why he loved to drink hot tea with biscuits even when the weather was as hot as the surface of the sun.
He also didn’t miss saying please and thank you in his sentences. And when we said “thank you” he would say “say thank you Granddaddyyyy” drawing out the word haha!
He loved his trees and plants and didn’t want to hear that my brothers and I didn’t water them at evening time lol.
He loved watching Wrestling (WWE) on tv, and he made us love watching it as well. He also loved watching the news channel and usually did so when we wanted to watch cartoons lol.
I was privileged to assist him with his meals during his last days. I thank him for all he did for my Mom, my brothers and I. I appreciate him very much and his passing away upset me.
I will miss him. Rest well Granddaddyyyy. I love you.
Sope Ifedi – Grand-Son
Grandad was a there for my mom, I and my siblings. More than father figure to us all. A great conversationalist, influencer and a family man, it was a privilege taking care of him during his last days.Rest in peace grandaddy.
Your seventh grandchild, Mosopefunjesu.
Enioluwayan Ifedi Grand-Son
I remember grandad as a man that liked to tell stories about the many places he was fortunate to visit. He was someone you could talk to. Grandad was also a very nice and kind man, no wonder many people loved him so much. He’s passing was very painful and too soon for me. However, he lived a very exciting life that he was always thankful of.
I miss you grandad.