Saturday, 23 July 2016

'I spent 3 years in my mother's womb'- Nigerian politician Chief Abiola Ogundokun

Chief Abiola Abiona Akinnpenu Ogundokun is a famous Nigerian politician and media practitioner of over five decades. Born in Iwo, Osun State born, Chief Ogundokun is somewhat of a controversial figure, while others will rather describe him as an extraordinary entrepreneur with investment across the real estate, media, politics and industry sectors.

He came into limelight in the early 70s (1972) when Juju music maestro Chief Commander Ebenezer Obey (MFR) waxed a special album in honour of Iwo, the birth town of Ogundokun in Osun State.

The Musician used Ogundokun’s personality famously in that popular album to illustrate the royalty and wealth of Iwo town. Ogundokun later feature prominently in the regime of President Shehu Shagari where he played the role of Publicity Secretary of the ruling party at the time.

Now 80 years old, in an interview with AsabeAfrika online magazine, he said something shocking; he had spent three years in his mother's womb.

Women of these days would rather induce the birth than go through that long process, you can't blame them, can you?

Here's an excerpt of the interview:

Couple of years back I was in your Iwo country home on a visit and I couldn’t imagine the huge love your people have for you. It is like anytime you are in town; your country home automatically becomes a Mecca of sort. Can you tell me the story of your growing up in Iwo?

"Well, Iwo is my home. I was born in a village after three years of my mother carrying me in her stomach. I spent three years in pregnancy. She delivered me by the bush path where she was buying cocoa. My mother was a produce merchant.

"Delivering me three years after pregnancy is the reason they named me ‘Akinpennu’. And delivering me by the foot path is the main reason they call me ‘Abiona’. I am also Abiola, Oladepo and other names. One thing about my birth is that my father and mother lived a very kind hearted life. They were so good to people, they are peace makers and peace lovers I inherited all these principles and traits from my parent. In my home town and in my life, I have settled problems between people more than me doing any other thing in life.

"And you see, I stay with my people. Many of my colleagues and contemporaries were afraid to build their house in Iwo. I built my house back in 1960s in Iwo town and my house is the first three storey building built with a block wall. I built my first housing estate in 1977 which was burnt in 1983 on the allegation that I was part of the instrument used to remove the then Chief Bola Ige and his government, which is not true because we didn’t rig the election. And you see when you stay with your people, you grow with them, you share their problems with them. They love you whenever you come around and whatever you have, you share with them and that make them love you the more.

"You see, there is poverty all over the world and Iwo is not exceptional, so, what I do is that whenever I go home, the little I have, I carry with me. Nobody in Iwo land will tell anybody that he came to me for assistance and I denied it. I have made sure that I treat every case with uttermost passion. Many people come with deception, with falsehood and we have continued to do things for them but in recent times we are becoming careful to find out before we give. People want jobs; I do my little best to help them wherever it is possible to find job for them."

You can read the rest of the interview here