Saturday, 4 July 2015

Lagos biggest land merchant, Ojugbele turns 80 + Pics & Gists from the June 16 bash


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Bashorun Lamina Ayinla Ojugbele with 3 of his Pretty wives cutting the birthday cake
Tuesday June 16, 2015 despite being a working day in Nigeria didn’t stop Lagosians and other people from all walks off life as they put aside others things to attend the 80th birthday celebration of one of Lagos, South West Nigerian famous real estate merchant, Bashorun Lamina Ayinla Ojugbele.

In the early hours of the day, from 11am prompt, the octogenarian assembled a cream of young, middle-aged and elderly business men and women to celebrate with pomp his 80th birthday which took on the entire day. The classy event took place at the Eko Club House off Bode Thomas Street- Surulere, Lagos, a place that Basorun Ojugbele’s name is held in very high esteem. Most of the top Lagos social clubs where Basorun Ojugbele has his name registered as a member were well represented at the event with the presence of cream-de-la-cream of the Lagos social circle turning down everything to honor one of Nigeria’s biggest real estate merchants. Your soar away Africa’s number 1 celebrity encounter blog, Asabeafrika was at the event and brought you exclusive pictures and snippets from the Ojugbele @ 80 bash. Enjoy the excerpts.
The Highly Fulfilled Bashorun Lamina Ayinla Ojugbele
About Lamina Ojugbele’s gait @ 80
Many invitees who sighted Bashorun Lamina Ayinla Ojugbele as he arrived for his 80th birthday celebration at Eko Club at 12:45 pm were taken aback in great awe as the octogenarian came down from one of his SUVs all by himself without using a walking stick or aided by anybody, a feat many attest to the way he had lived his life from his youth age till 80. The Ota Prince whose late mother was the First Iyalode of Ota land in Ogun state was simply clad in a white T-shirt and a dark colored trouser, with a Kangol styled cap which indeed made him look boyish and sprite. On the frontage of his T-shirt was the bold inscription in appreciation to the Almighty God for his life “Alhamdulilahi I’m 80” while the back of the T-shirt simply had “June 16” inscribed on it. (Alhamdulilahi means “Thank God” in Arabic language). Perhaps, Bashorun Ojugbele’s outfit was to recall for him, his youthful days ‘when men were boys’. Except for some fierce looking hefty and heavily built body guards (Security Personnel) from OPLS (On Point Logistic & Security Services) who gave body security to the Bashorun. The celebrant moved around the venue greeting friends and close associates from seats to seats. He also went to the restroom momentarily by himself with no one aiding him or with a walking stick. His gait really shocked and surprised guests who attended the one in town birthday celebration. 
The Bashorun with three of his Oloris about to cut his 80th bash cake
Representatives of the Olota of Ota
Best kept secret of Lamina Ayinla Ojugbele
Many who lived in Nigeria of the 50s, 60s and 70s must have heard the name of this young socialite who had a popular hotel and club house on Palm Avenue, Mushin of those days. One of the famous traditional Apala music exponents of that era, Alhaji Yussuf Olatunji did a number in one of his albums on one Lamina Ojugbele and his “Ota Night Club and guest house” in Mushin area of Lagos. Then, Ota guest house in Mushin was one of the happening places for night life after late highlife music icon, Bobby Benson’s Hotel De Bamboo on Ikorodu Road. In later years, Juju Music lord turned Evangelist Ebenezer Obey Fabiyi equally gave the same Ojugbele a memorable number in one of his albums where the Juju music icon lyrically advised the Ota prince to continue to be of good character and never deviate from his principles (Ojugbele bio tin se, bee na ni koo maa se, mama yiwapada etc), his name and many of his peers like Chief Lai Amoje and Prince Kamal Adeyemi aka Super soon went up in the social circle of the early 80s and late 90s. They rocked town, made fortunes and drew attention in all places. But for Lamina Ayinla Ojugbele, he was more than all that. From club and hotel business, Ojugbele grew to become one of Nigeria’s and if not Lagos’ biggest land merchants with landed properties scattered in many choice areas across the state and in Ota, his home town and place of birth. 
The Yoruba On-Air-Personalities from Bond FM & OGBC 2 led by Alhaji Tajudeen Ajani aka Oju-Elegba
Representative of Alaafin of Oyo with a guest
For instance, a close business associate who rate Ojugbele high in real estate investment said he is the owner of over 80% of landed properties at the famous Aluminum village, Dopemu, Lagos and equally has a vast land of real estate at Ota, Ogun state apart from other landed properties scattered in many other areas of Lagos and Ogun state respectively. Between him and Eleganza boss, Rasaq Akanni Okoya, nobody could bet who has more landed properties as both, when many Nigerians were going to Harvard, Cambridge and Oxford to acquire educational knowledge, were busy acquiring lands. Ojugbele also invested in livestock farming under the famous Ojugbele Farms in Ota area of Ogun state. His farm was the biggest and most popular after Obasanjo farms until couple of years back when he clocked 70, he closed down the farm business to invest in his real estate and property business. His philanthropic gesture is said to be very legendary as he has given scholarship to many known and unknown persons that has come across him and that is why he has so many titles bestowed upon him by several communities in Lagos and Ogun state. Bashorun Lamina Ayinla Ojugbele is the Baba Adinni of Kariola Mosque, Ota, Ogun state. He is also the Mogaji of Ilogbo land in same Ota, Ogun state and he is equally the Baajiki of Idimu land among many other traditional and social titles bestowed upon him as a result of his philanthropic gesture. The octogenarian is a member of Lagos Island Club, Eko Club, City Star Club and Iganmode club in Ota land.
The Bashorun with his London purchased 80th birthday cake

The London Imported Cake for Baba Ojugbele @ 80
Ex-Lagos Deputy Governor toasts Ojugbele
Not many people know that ex-Lagos state deputy governor under action governor, Alhaji Lateef Jakande, Chief Rafiu Jafojo sent in a birthday greeting card in form of a letter to the celebrant, Basorun Lamina Ojugbele. Jafojo who is said to be more advanced in age (87) than Ojugbele couldn’t make the event due to old age challenges but he ensured a letter personally signed by him was sent in to his long time friend and blood brother from same Awori land. This blog gathered that both Ojugbele and Jafojo have come a long way as they both grew together in same Awori community and until politics drew them apart in the early 80s. They later re-united and did many things together.
Some top ladies from the Civil Service @ Ojugbele's 80th bash
The traditional drummers from the Iga Idugaran Palace of Oba Rilwan Akiolu
Between Ebenezer Obey & Lamina Ojugbele
Those close to the organizers of the 80th birthday  event  of Basorun Lamina Ojugbele squealed to Asabeafrika that Juju Music exponent, Commander now Evangelist Ebenezer Obey when contacted to perform at his friend, Lamina Ojugbele’s party as Chief Entertainer quickly turned down the gesture to collect his normal fee of  N5million per outing from Bashorun Ojugbele and only settled for a lower sum for what is known as “Standard Outing Allowance” (SOA) which is solely for packing of  Musical instruments and welfare of band boys as the 73 years old Juju Music Lord turned Evangelist saw the event as an opportunity to pay back to a loyal supporter of his career in the last 50 years. According to those close to Bashorun Ojugbele and Evangelist Obey, despite the fact that both of them are of different religion, they both shared a friendship that is legendary till date. Impeccable family sources said some of Chief’s elder wives and his younger brother, Alhaji Buari Oloto preferred King of World Beats, King Sunny Ade or Fuji Music Czar, King Wasiu Ayinde Marshal to perform for Baba at 80 but the real estate guru insist it must be Obey or nobody else. And to show how firm his relationship with Obey is, Ojugbele ensured that his picture of over 50 years and that of Chief Commander Ebenezer Obey when they were both in their 20s was put alongside his other younger day pictures in his birthday banner placed at a strategic position at the venue. However, the real truth of the matter according to another credible family source is that Commander Ebenezer Obey actually started his night jumps in the 60s at Ojugbele’s Ota Night Club and Guest House at Mushin. The nostalgic feeling of their old time friendship is said to be the bond that has held both Ojugbele and Obey till date. And once the Commander stormed the stage at 2pm dot that afternoon, he didn’t come down until 8pm.
A crowd of guests at the Ojugbele's 50th birthday bash
Prince Buari Oloto's children
Glo ambassador Madam Kofo is MC
These days in Lagos and other places, veteran actress and gele headgear expert Abiola Atanda aka Madam Kofo is getting the upper hand as she coordinates top notch events for the high and mighty. She was the one in charge at the Ojugbele’s 80th birthday bash as she conducted the event with sense and style. The veteran gele expert and MC who was at a time besieged by loyalists of some of Chief Ojugbele’s wives was able to maintain decorum, sense and maturity as she didn’t want to offend the celebrant and any of his wives since it was a polygamous setting and many of the Chief’s wives equally invited their big friends to the party as well. Some of the guests wanted their names to be mentioned and recognized during musical intervals by Commander Ebenezer Obey’s band. Madam Kofo who is also a long standing member of the Lagos social circle was able to locate and identify some of Chief Ojugbele’s old time friends who attended the event as well as friends of his various wives.
Top Ladies from Lagos Island, Ereko Lane
The Celebrant with one of his daughters and son In-law
 Radio Stars dressed down for Ojugbele
You will think Bashorun Lamina Ojugbele is the Chairman of the Federal government owned Ikoyi  based Bond FM radio station with the kind of attention his 80th birthday celebration generated from top presenters and broadcasters from the famous station which is well known for presenting vernacular news headline in the early hours of the day. Leading the team of presenters (Soorosoro) from Bond FM is Alhaji Tajudeen Ajani aka Ojuelegba. This veteran Youruba On-Air-Personality co-directed the event with Madam Kofo. Other presenters who did one comedy or the other at the occasion are Kolawole Adio aka Omo Iya-Ologi; Adio is the presenter of the famous vernacular program, Eshin Oro, Koko Inu Iwe Iroyin & Edekun Iwa Odaran. He was at the party with his producer Temitope Oyefolu.  Mohammed Kasim aka Gbogbo-Ede was also with the team with famous OGBC 2 Abeokuta On-air-personality MC Imalian Boy.
Alhaja Tawakalitu Ibitola Ojugbele (R) with a friend
Prince Aremu Onilu-Oba, HRM Oba Rilwan Osuolale Akiolu's special talking drummer with his men
Meet Chief Ojugbele’s son in-law who clocked 76 on same day
It sounds funny and interesting that an 80 years old man will have a 76 years old (Just four years down his age) son in-law who will be bold enough to admit it and even celebrate with his “father-in-law” at 80. But that was the lot of London based ex-army officer and flight captain with the defunct Nigeria Airways, Engineer (Chief) Joseph Olajide Bankole who clocked 76 on same day but had to abandon everything he was doing in London and flew into Nigeria to celebrate with the father of his younger wife, Denrele who he married recently. The very fresh looking and jolly fellow ex-pilot was full of praise for Chief Ojugbele whom he described as ‘a wonderful father-in-law’ who merits the sacrifice of dumping his own 76th years birthday celebration for him. Chief Olajide Bankole has many children across the world among which is a pilot presently flying in China.
Alhaja Tawakalitu's business associates
Some Female Socialites @ the event
Meet Basorun Ojugbele’s 5 Powerful Wives
Those who know the ‘birthday boy’ testified to the fact that Basorun Lamina Ojugbele will never touch anything that does not have quality as a second name. Apart from raising quality children who are all doing well in their various endeavors in life, the Ota, Ogun state born real estate merchant also married 5 quality women with great pedigree in their various backgrounds. Leading the team of very beautiful and industrious women in the harem of the Ota born land merchant is Alhaja Funmilayo Anike Ojugbele, an Abeokuta-Ogun state born educationist who retired as a school principal from the Lagos State Ministry of Education. This 72 years old pretty woman who married her husband when he was still ‘a boy’ taught at various schools in Mushin area of Lagos before she retired 12 years ago. The next lady is Alhaja Sadiat Oladunni Ojugbele, this Ijebu-Ode-Ogun state born lady is a big time business woman who into importing and exporting. She equally drew her cream of friends and associates to her husband’s 80th birthday bash. The next one is Alhaja Fausat Ojugbele, a retired civil servant who used to work at the administration department of the Federal Ministry of Lands and Works. 
The Representative of The Alaafin of Oyo Empire @ the event
Princess Ejide Adeyemi, CEO, SOCOPAO
She also worked with ministry of power, science and technology before she finally retired. She was at the event with her own cream of technocrat friends.  Chief’s 4th wife is Alhaja Tawakalitu Ibitola Ojugbele from Abeokuta. She deals with head gear textiles (Gele) at gutter market, Ereko lane of Lagos Island. In fact, her fashion company, Pee Square Textiles is said to be one of the few textile concerns with best of head gear textile brands in the market. However, Chief’s 5th wife is the most popular in the Lagos political establishment as she is a powerful stalwart of the ruling APC party. She is beautiful and ever radiant Alhaja (Chief) Mrs. Basirat Olayinka Ojugbele, this no nonsense textile merchant turned politician is the woman leader of APC in Ojokoro land in Lagos. Before going into politics, Chief Mrs. Basirat Olayinka Ojugbele was also into textile and runs Bayinkus International, a textile firm at Lagos Island. She came with hordes of politicians in APC and friends from other sector of the economy. All the wives did what they could do to make the event unique.
Alhaja Tawakalitu Ibitola Ojugbele with friends
The Celebrant with Friends & Well-Wishers
Meet Chief Ojugbele’s “12 Apostles”
They are Baba’s wonderful kids who are all successful in various sectors of the Nigerian socio-economical life. While some are already making success in business and politics, others are at Ivy League colleges in the United Kingdom.  They are Mrs. Taofikat Oke (Nee Ojugbele), Mr. Kazeem Ojugbele, a business man and scion of the Ojugbele’s dynasty. Others are Alhaji Kehinde Ojugbele, Alhaja Iyabode Kafayat Egbewole (Nee Ojugbele) Alhaji Idowu Ojugbele, Alhaji Monsuru Ojugbele, Sheriff Ojugbele, Honorable Rotimi Ojugbele (Ado-Odo Ota LGA), Farouk Ojugbele, Abimbola Taofeek Ojugbele, Ademola Ojugbele (Jnr.) and Rotimi Yera.

The Celebrant with a close ally savour the moment as BGs & Talking Drummers perform their duty
The Bashorun in company of his wives receives a handsome gift of N50K from members of Island Club
Textile merchants from Lagos Island
Some Jolly lady socialites @ the event

Gbenga Dan Asabe

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