Popularly called the “Old Boys”, they have all attained commanding positions in business, Law, Medicine, Banking, Insurance, Engineering, Academics, Broadcasting, Politics, Sports, Religion, Education, Diplomacy, Architecture and Planning in the country and beyond. They are very prominent and highly connected to the corridors of power. They are powerful philanthropists. They are captains of industries while some have attained the peak of their careers. One shocking thing about these old boys is that there are many of them who are in their 80s and 90s even 100 and are still aging gracefully. They still go out and you will actually think they are in their 60s because of their agility. Below is a list of a few of them.
At the recent 100th birthday of the Doyen of Accountancy in Africa, Pa. Akintola Williams, a lot of grand old men came out in their large numbers to honour the centenarian. Decked in mostly white with their caps, they were seen exchanging pleasantries and moving from one table to the other.
On this list is Pa Folarin Coker senior, Baba Eto of Lagos who left school in 1941. He is 98 years old and is never tired. He still looks younger than his age at close to 100. Another old boy as they love to be called is Chief Ayo Adebanjo, an elder statesman, politician cum lawyer who is 90. He is still agile, look less than 70 and shows no sign of aging.
The Chairman of Eagle Paint as well, Chief Akin Disu is also aging gracefully. He still attends parties. At age 82, he remains one of the most visible role models in the country today. He is a man not only loved and admired by the vast majority of his people in his local community today and also revered higher as evidenced by many traditional titles conferred on him like Abobagun of Lagos, Borokini 1 and so on.
Prof. Akinyanju is a Physician and Haematologist he is better known as the Founder & Chairman of the Sickle Cell Foundation Nigeria.
He is a member of the World Health Organization (WHO) Expert Advisory Panel of the Human Genetics Programme and a Medical Advisor to the American Embassy.
Another old boy is Professor Adeyemo Elebute who is also over 80 years. He is the Chairman of Hygeia: a leader in the health insurance business. He has been known for his outstanding contribution in transforming and redefining the Nigeria health sector. He is a former Provost of the College of Medicine at the University of Lagos. Also is Professor Deji Femi-Pearse, a former Provost of the College of Medicine, University of Lagos, he serves as the Pro-Chancellor & Chairman of Council of Lagos State University (LASU), and Head of World Health Organisation Training Centre.
Otunba Michael Olasubomi Balogun is 84, he is the founder of First City Merchant Bank. Balogun was a long-time member of the council of the Nigerian Stock Exchange. Chief Razak Akanni Okoya is 79. He is a billionaire industrialist and the Aare of Lagos. He had his only formal education at Ansar-u-deen Primary School, Oke Popo, Lagos.
He is the founder of Eleganza group of companies, which has a market spanning Western Africa.
Chief Kesington Adebutu is the billionaire who owns the multi-million naira betting business – Premier Lotto. (Baba Ijebu) was born on October 24, 1935, at Iperu Remo in Ikenne Local Government Area of Ogun State. He is 83 years.
The name, Prince Samuel Adedoyin, rings such loud bell in Nigeria and one can also say the same of Doyin Group of Companies. With over 14 subsidiaries under its umbrella, Prince Samuel Adedoyin is an accomplished businessman, industrialist.
Christopher Oladipo Ogunbajo is a Nigerian Corporate Lawyer and Philanthropist. Chief Christopher Oladipo Ogunbanjo OFR, CON is the founder of Messrs Chris Ogunbanjo & Co.
Dr. Christopher Kolade, Nigeria’s former High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, is the Chairman, Board of Directors of SystemSpecs. Dr. Kolade is a veteran broadcaster, a communicator and a quintessential information disseminator who is nationally and internationally renowned for his business skills and integrity. He retired at the age of 45 as the Director-General of the Nigerian Broadcasting Commission and joined Cadbury Nigeria Plc as Administration Director where he rose to become the Managing Director and Chairman.
Chief Michael Ade-Ojo is a successful entrepreneur, businessman and Philanthropist of repute. He is the Founder and Chairman of Elizade Group of Companies comprising, Elizade Nigeria Limited and Crown Drinks Limited amongst others.
Pa Ayo Adebanjo is still very active. At 90, he does not have the physical attributes of a nonagenarian. For him, there is no need for a walking stick; neither does he need artificial aids to see or hear. He remains articulate when pontificating on current issues and is an activist, a political activist, in his own right.
The life of Pastor E.A Adejare Adeboye is a fulfillment of the scriptures in his life. No doubt Pastor E.A Adeboye is spiritually wealthy and divinely connected, his story is an amazing one. Though very humble, he sits atop over 500 billion church empire known as Redeemed Christian Church of God. In furtherance of this goal, he oversees a network of over 40,000 parish-churches in 186 nations of the world. In the United States, there are over 600 several RCCG branches, the largest concentrations being in the states of Maryland, Texas, Illinois, California, and Washington D.C. He is the General Overseer of RCCG Worldwide, He is 77. Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye, (Head of Chamber) is a Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.He is the Chairman of the Board of Commissioners of the Nigerian Communications Commission. He is 85. For Pa Akintola Williams FCA, CFR, CBE, who turned 100 recently, life has indeed been kind to him because, in his lifetime, he was celebrated by the whole world for his major achievements, his impact and contribution to the country at large. This is a man of honour, integrity whose dedication and determination made him one of the best and a household name in Nigeria. Popularly called the doyen of Accountancy, he is the pioneer of Deloitte & Touche (formerly Akintola Williams Deloitte) which is the oldest indigenous firm in Nigeria, established in 1952 when he was 33 years of age. Ijaw leader, Edwin Clark is a Nigerian politician from Delta State who worked with the administrations of Military Governor Samuel Ogbemudia and Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon between 1966 and 1975. The over 80-year-old is the chairman of Delta state elders forum.
The Esama of Benin, Chief Gabriel Osawaru Igbinedion’s business empire includes an international property portfolio and a private TV and radio station. He owns a private bank, oil refinery, diamond, gold, marble mines over Africa, a private university and a large number of hotels. He previously owned the now-defunct private airline, Okada Air, boasting of over 40 aircrafts (planes and helicopters). He has built numerous churches including a Grand Catholic Cathedral, and has set up and owns a number of private hospitals across Nigeria.
Chief Ernest Shonekan is a British-trained Nigerian lawyer, industrialist, politician and traditional chieftain. He was appointed as interim president of Nigeria by General Ibrahim Babangida. General Yakubu “Jack” Dan-Yumma Gowon is the former head of state of Nigeria. General Gowon is the President and Chairman, Board of Trustees of the Yakubu Gowon Centre, Abuja and Chairman of the largest insurance companies in Nigeria and also Chairman of the Board of Directors of Sahara Group.
General Abdulsalam Abubakar is Nigeria’s eighth military Head of State since the country’s independence from Britain 38 years ago. He was born on 13th June 1942 in Minna, Niger State in Northern Nigeria. Abubakar is one of the few generals in the Nigerian army who rose to the top without holding political office. He has held only command and military positions, and has, in general, stayed out of the political limelight.
Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida GCFR, is a retired Nigerian Army General who was President of Nigeria. General Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma GCON is a Nigerian soldier, politician, multi-millionaire businessman and philanthropist. He was Nigerian Army Chief of Army Staff. He was also Minister of Defence under President Olusegun Obasanjo’s administration.
In every generation, God has a way of blessing mankind with a few exceptional colossus individuals whose ways and accomplishments would be confounding to their fellow countrymen. Aare Afe Emmanuel Babalola, the founder of Afe Babalola University (ABUAD) is one of such rare distinguished few in Nigeria. He is an Officer of the Order of the Federal Republic (OFR) and Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON). Aare was the former pro-Chancellor and Chairman of the governing council of the University of Lagos.
Oba Sikiru Kayode Adetona is the Awujale of the Ijebu Kingdom. He was installed as king in 1960, making him one of the longest-reigning monarchs in Nigeria. As king, he represents the Anikilaya ruling family.
Oba Adedotun Gbadebo was born on 14 September 1943, into the Laarun Ruling House. He is a grandson of the sixth Alake of Egbaland, Oba Gbadebo, who ruled from 1898 to 1920, and is a nephew of Oba Gbadebo II. He became a Principal Staff Officer to Major-General Tunde Idiagbon, the Chief of Staff at the Supreme Headquarters, Dodan Barracks and retired from the army as a Colonel.
Edo born auto magnate, Chief Sunny Asemota, the Chairman of Sunny Motors and Omoregie Motors, is one wealthy Nigerian whose indelible footprints in Nigeria’s auto business have remained a reference point for many decades. In the last 40 years, the revered businessman with his equally famous wife, Ireti, have also made their mark in the social circuit, a feat that has earned them a legendary status of the sort.
Chief Emmanuel Inwanyanwu is also one of the billionaires in the east with vast businesses scattered around the city.
Ike Omar Sanda Nwachukwu (MNI) was born September 1, 1940. The 79-year-old is a retired Army Officer and Nigerian politician who, among other positions, has served as Foreign Minister of Nigeria twice and as a Senator in the National Assembly delegation from Abia State.
Oba Saliu Adetunji is the Olubadan of Ibadan was born August 26, 1928. He is a monarch who currently sits as the 41st Olubadan of Ibadan following his coronation on March 4, 2016. Prior to his coronation as the Olubadan of Ibadan, Saliu Adetunji was the Balogun of Ibadan land. He is 91years old.
Pa Reuben Fasoranti is the leader of Afenifere, once the dominant Yoruba cultural and political movement. He was the Commissioner for Finance during the Administration of Chief Adekunle Ajasin, the first elected governor of old Ondo State who won on the platform of Obafemi Awolowo’s Unity Party of Nigeria. Fasoranti was a deciding factor in the emergence of Ajasin as the first governor. He is 93 years old.
Oba (Dr) Gabriel Adekunle Aromolaran II, Ph.D., CFR. The Owa Obokun Adimula of Ijesaland, Paramount Ruler of Ijesaland, he is age 82 years old. He ascended the throne in 1982 by succeeding Oba Peter Adeniran Olatunji Agunlejika II. Oba Aromolaran is the first Nigerian Oba to hold a Ph.D. (Economics).
Prof Wole Soyinka is a Nigerian playwright, poet and essayist. He was awarded the 1986 Nobel Prize in Literature, the first African to be honoured in that category. Soyinka was born into a Yoruba family in Abeokuta.
Chief Arthur Mbanefo is the frontline diplomat and former Nigerian Permanent Representative to the United Nations. He is 89 years.
Chief Bode Akindele, talk of money, respect and power – he has it all. From Europe to America; from Asia to Africa and back home in Nigeria, he has achieved great heights. He has seen and conquered the world. For more than six decades, Sir Bode Akindele has been one of Africa’s richest individuals. He is 85 years.
Former Civilian Governor, Dr. Victor Omololu Olunloyo is a mathematician who became governor of Oyo State in Nigeria in October 1983, holding the office briefly until the military regime of Muhammadu Buhari took power in December 1983. He later became a force in the People’s Democratic Party in Oyo State.
When you mention some billionaires in Nigeria, Chief Bode Emmanuel’s name will crop up. He is one of the board room gurus of our times, very stylish and highly revered amongst his contemporaries. He owns an oil company Saipem.
Chief Emeka Anyaoku, GCVO, CFR, CON born 18 January 1933, he is 86 years old. He is a Nigerian diplomat of Igbo descent. He was the third Commonwealth Secretary-General. Aside from his international career, Chief Anyaoku continues to fulfill the duties of his office as Ichie Adazie of Obosi, a traditional Ndichie chieftainship.
Femi Okurounmu was elected Senator for the Ogun Central constituency of Ogun State, Nigeria at the start of the Nigerian Fourth Republic, running on the Alliance for Democracy platform. He held office from 29 May 1999 to 29 May 2003. Okurounmu was earlier Commissioner of the Ogun State Ministry of Works.
Chief Olusegun Osoba was born on 15 July 1939. He is a journalist and politician. Chief Olusegun Osoba was elected on two different occasions as Governor of Ogun State first from January 1992 until November 1993 with the Social Democratic Party (SDP). In 1999, he was elected again as Governor with the Alliance for Democracy party (AD), holding office between May 1999 and May 2003. He holds the National Honours of the Commander of the Order of the Niger CON. He is a member of the National Conference 2014. He is 80 years.
Eighty-six-years-old former Federal Commissioner for Works, Alhaji Femi Okunnu SAN was born 19 February 1933. He is a Lawyer and former pro-chancellor and chairman governing council of the University of Agriculture, Makurdi.
Chief J. A. Obafemi Olopade, undoubtedly the most influential member of the inner-circle during the regime of former President Olusegun. He runs a Consulting and Construction firm, International Engineering Consultants. He is 93 years old.
Otunba Adekunle Ojora is a Lagos High Chief and prince from the Adele Ajosun Ruling House.
He was once reported to be the most quoted name on the boards of blue-chip companies in Nigeria, thus earning the accolade of “ Guru of Nigeria’s boardrooms. Chief Adekunle Ojora born 87 years ago, is a Nigerian business executive who was chairman of the board of AGIP Nigeria Limited. He began a career as a journalist with BBC in the early 1950s. In 1962 he became an executive of UAC and in the 1970s, he began to invest in a number of foreign firms in Nigeria.
Oba Idowu Abiodun Oniru is 82 years. He worked at the Lagos Town Council now known as Lagos City Council for the year 1963-64 as a rate collector. He left Nigeria in 1965 to the United Kingdom where he studied Civil Engineering at the British Institute of Engineering Technology in Slough. His choice to study Civil Engineering was as a result of the great plans he had for the family. After mourning his mother, he joined his father in the company set up to develop the family land in Victoria Island and Lekki. The company has experienced immense growth over the years.
Professor Wale Omole is the Chairman, Editorial Board of The Guardian Newspapers. His academic career was capped by becoming Vice-Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife between 1991and 1999.
Thereafter, Professor Omole became a citizen of the world bagging several awards and playing different roles in different fields.
The Aro of the source, Chief Alex-Duduyemi is a business person who has been the head of 7 different companies and holds the position of Chairman & Chief Executive Officer for Bolex Holdings Ltd., Chairman at BJ Services Co. Nigeria Ltd., Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Equity Shipping Co. Nigeria Ltd., Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Manucom Fishing Co. Ltd., Chairman for Bec Freres Nigeria Ltd., Chairman & Chief Executive Officer at Equity Petroleum Services Nigeria Ltd. and Chairman for Bureau Veritas Nigeria Ltd. Mr. Alex-Duduyemi is also on the board of Secure Electronic Technology Plc. He received an undergraduate degree from Northwestern Polytechnic University.
Oba Fatai Akiolu was on May 23, 2003, Akiolu selected by the kingmakers of the Lagos traditional kingdom and confirmed by the Lagos State government as the 21st Oba of Lagos; He was capped the next day, and was crowned on August 9, 2003. He has served in this position since May 2003, when he succeeded Oba Adeyinka Oyekan.
Chief Adebola Adegunwa OFR, is a Nigerian businessman, philanthropist, and former chairman of Sterling Bank Plc. He is the founder and chief executive officer of Essay Holdings Limited as well as chairman of Tura Kodak Film. He is the executive director of Thai Farm International Limited and the founder of Sulaimon College of Education, Ososa, Ogun State, Nigeria. In 2006, he was conferred with a national honor of the Officer of the order of Nigeria(OON) by chief Olusegun Obasanjo the former President of Nigeria.
Otunba Bush Alebiosu started his early career as an Engineer after his return from the UK in 1967, and in 1976, he went into politics and became a Councillor in the then Shomolu Local Government of Lagos State. He became a Legislator in the Lagos State House of Assembly in 1979 and was re-elected in 1983, a post he held till the Buhari-Idiagbon coup in 1983. He is 83 years old.
Former Nigeria’s President Chief Olusegun Obasanjo is 82 years old. Born 5 March 1937, he is a former Nigerian Army general who was President of Nigeria from 1999 to 2007. Obasanjo was a career soldier before serving twice as his nation’s head of state: He served as a military ruler from 13 February 1976 to 1 October 1979 and as a democratically elected president from 29 May 1999 to 29 May 2007. From July 2004 to January 2006, Obasanjo also served as Chairperson of the African Union.
Olorogun Sunny Kuku is an Ijebu high chief. He is an expert endocrinologist. A recipient of First Distinguished Alumnus award University Lagos, 1991, Ambassador of Goodwill award City of Freetown, Sierra Leone, 1992. He is the Chairman division medicine, The Eko Hospital, Lagos, since 1978, and joint chief medical director, since 1978.
Like a good wine, Chief Kola Daisi gets better with age. At a time when his contemporaries are either slowing down or have halted their activities completely, he is on the go, determined to make every passing day better than the previous one for those in his immediate and remote environment. The octogenarian’s energy bursts forth when he comes across an opportunity to improve life and living.
Otunba Lekan Are OON is an elder statesman and Chairman, Kakanfo Inn and Conference Centre, Dr Lekan Are, clocked 85 years recently. He has provided job creation for many Nigerians through his various businesses and investments for over 30 years. He remains one of Nigeria’s foremost agronomists, civil/public servant, philanthropist.
Chief Ogunsola is best known for being the Chairman of Punch Newspapers who brought new life into Punch and made it the most widely read newspaper in the country. Chief Ogunshola is currently a non-executive Chairman of Continental Reinsurance Plc. Chief Ogunsola was at various times Managing Director of Niger Insurance Ltd now Plc.
Chairman of the Committee of Actuaries advising the United Nations Pension Fund – Chairman of Alexander Forbes Consulting Actuaries,– President, Newspapers Proprietors’’ Association and Foundation President of Nigeria Actuarial Society. He is 75 years old.
Although one of Nigeria ’s eminent commercial legal practitioners and entrepreneurs, Chief Adebayo Muritala Akande was never loud about his influence and worth.
But the Ibadan- born industrialist, whose investment spans the entire gamut of the communications industry–telephony, satellite cable television and radio broadcasting, can be rather passionate about affairs and interests relating to his native city, where he holds the chieftaincy title of the Agbaakin Olubadan of Ibadanland and he is an active member of the highly influential Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes (CCII), the umbrella body for the town associations and elite clubs.
Chief Ebenezer Obey whose real names are Ebenezer Remilekun Aremu Olasupo Fabiyi began his professional career in the mid-1950s after moving to Lagos. After tutelage under Fatai Rolling-Dollar’s band, he formed a band called The International Brothers in 1964, playing highlife-juju fusion. The band later metamorphosed into Inter-Reformers in the early-1970s, with a long list of Juju album hits on the West African Decca musical label.
He is also renowned for Christian spiritual themes in his music and has since the early-1990s retired into Nigerian gospel music ministry.
King of world beats, Sunday Adeniyi Adegeye MFR, known professionally as King Sunny Adé, is a singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist in the West African musical style jùjú. One of the first African pop musicians to gain international success, he has been called one of the most influential musicians of all time.
Prof. Sir Victor Uwaifo (MON) was born 1 March 1941. The 78 years old is a musician, writer, sculptor, and musical instrument inventor.
He also served as commissioner for arts and culture in Edo State under the government of Lucky Igbinedion. Uwaifo is famous for his joromi music. He records under the name Sir Victor Uwaifo. 80-year-old chief Bisi Akande was a governor of Osun State, Nigeria from 1999–2003, as a member of the Alliance for Democracy (AD) party, and was the first interim Chairman of the All Progressives Congress.
– TAYO FAJORIN OYEDIJI