Politician, educationist Olaniyan dies at 92 as children vow to defend legacy
Death has sneaked into Osun State, snatching an eminent educationist and politician, Chief Christian Ipoola Olaniyan.
The Commissioner for Local Government in the defunct Victor Olunloyo administration and proprietor of Victory Group of Schools in Lagos died recently. He was aged 92.
A product of Fourah Bay College, Freetown, Sierra-Leone, and Trinity College, University of Dublin, United Kingdom, the foremost teacher served as the principal of Christ Apostolic Grammar School, Ibadan and Oriwu College, Ikorodu, before Victory Grammar School, Ikeja, Victory Home School, Ojota and Victory Home School, Ode-Omu, Osun State.
His past students included Prof. John Abioye, Chief Abiola Morakinyo, Osuolale Oyefiran, an architect, Prof. Abraham Oyedeji, Prof. Keye Akinbami, Chief Timothy Adesiyan, and Hakeen Dickson, former chairman of Surulere Council in Lagos.
Olaniyan was drafted into politics in 1959 by local party leaders of Ode-Omu, including Pa Dawodu Makanjuola, Pa Ezekiel Adelowo and other grassroots politicians, who agitated that the area should be represented by an educated person.
Despite the fact that he lost his regional parliamentary bid, the foray opened his eyes to the imperative of politics as a veritable vocation for serving the locality.
Although he was appointed commissioner in 1983, Olaniyan quit politics in 1984 to face his educational interests, following the military intervention in politics.
His daughter, Mrs. Titi Adenekan, told reporters in Lagos, that his children have resolved to protect his legacies as an educator, administrator, politician, Scout patron and community leader.
She said: “Victory High School has turned out 332,000 students to date. Other seven schools are not resting on their oars, but continue to turnout successful candidates as well.”
Adenekan also praised Olaniyan’s philanthropist activities, recalling that “he never stopped awarding scholarships in Egbedore District of Osun State.”
She said many of the beneficiaries became professors, medical doctors, lawyers, architects and other professionals, who now constitute a formidable association known as ‘Olaniyan Scholars.’
The deceased was the Atuluse of Ode-Omu, Bobajiro of Ikeja, Baagbimo of Onigbagbo/Opebi, and Justice of Peace(JP).
His son, Biola Olaniyan, said his father had a succession plan, adding that plans are also underway to immortalise him for his service to humanity.