THE sage and founder of the modern Yoruba nation, Chief Obafemi Awolowo has been named as the Yoruba Man of the century. The announcement made on Thursday by IrohinOodua, the pan-Yoruba media online also listed Professor Wole Soyinka and Pastor TB Joshua as outstanding Yoruba personalities that have made unequalled contributions to the upliftment of the glory and grandeur of the Yoruba people.
While Pastor TB Joshua was named as the Yoruba Man of the Decade, Professor Wole Soyinka was listed as the Yoruba Man of the Year 2014 in what represents the group’s maiden edition. IrohinOdua describes Professor Soyinka as a “stainless steel and the most righteous of the living Yoruba faithful.”
The statement was signed by the Editorial Board Chairman of IrohinOdua, Prince Babatunde Adeleke. IrohinOdua was established as the first pan-Yoruba news medium with an outreach of over half a million of mostly Yoruba people across the world.
According to the statement, the three personalities were selected after a careful consideration of the role each had played in the annals of Yoruba modern history regarding placing the Yoruba on the positive angle of global reckoning.
Eulogising Pastor TB Joshua, Prince Adeleke said, “amazing is the testimony of boost up from Nigeria and across the world by the poor, the rich; the haves and the have-nots, the high and low, but most astonishingly, people of all faith in Africa, Asia, America and across Europe, even in the remotest, hilly and isolated Islands that dot the great rivers and tributaries of the Pacific Ocean.”
He said that Pastor T.B Joshua had brought honour to his people, the Yoruba, perhaps, in measures inestimable. Irohinodua stated “he began his ministerial career at a swampy location in Ikotun Egbe, Lagos. Today, this ancestral origin of the Synagogue has transformed from a dingy wasteland into a local Disneyland drawing, in one year, millions of visitors to Nigeria from Africa, Europe, the Middle East and America.”
According to Adeleke, through tonnes of email correspondents sent to IrohinOdua, Pastor Joshua received commendations for his meritorious services to mankind. He stated “We see in his handiwork, a quiet revolution to transform the world in ways unimaginable. Since we blew the whistle for nomination, we have received incalculable, baffling testimonials from royals and ordinary street folks leading us to a hidden light in a dark, malicious world where the poor remain the dreg and the end butt of repression, neglect and perpetual want.”
The statement noted further that “the Yoruba has a long, cherished history. In the early part of the 9th Century, we had an organised system of government. By 10th century, the Yoruba already had a city state, Ile-Ife, which flourished through the golden ages. Our forebears exchanged trade with Europe and the Middle East, as far back as the 11th century. We are a proud nation that has produced icons over generations. We had produced men and women in peace and war time; icons in the field of trade and commerce. In the 18th century, spurred by technology and the art espoused in war, Ogedengbe, the Ekiti-Ijesha war general was invited to England for a state visit by the King of England.
It added “every generation brings forth, like a star never to dim, icons that stand tall like a colossus.”