By Dayo Johnson, Henry Umoru Boluwaji Obahopo
Akure—VETERAN journalist and former Managing Director of Daily Times Nigeria Plc, Dr. Onukaba Adinoyi-Ojo, died along Akure-Ilesha Road, Ondo State, on Sunday.
According to sources, the incident occurred in Ero village about 10 minutes drive from Akure, in the Ifedore council area of the state at about 6p.m.
The deceased, who was in company of an unnamed friend, ran into some robbers on his way back to Abuja from Abeokuta, Ogun State, after attending the commissioning of former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo’s Presidential Library.
Police sources said that on seeing the robbery operation ahead, the deceased fled into the bush to take cover.
Another motorist, who also wanted to avoid running into the robbery operation, swerved into the bush and reportedly ran over the deceased where he was hiding. He reportedly died on the spot while the driver of the vehicle that killed him fled the scene.
His corpse was later deposited at Akure Spe-cialist Hospital mortuary before it was conveyed to his home town, Ihima, in Kogi State, for interment. He was born on March 9, 1960.
Gov Bello, Atiku mourn
The state governor, Yahaya Bello, described late Adinoyi-Ojo’s death as a painful departure, eulogising him as a “literary icon, formidable playwright, distinguished citizen, illustrious Kogi son and former governorship aspirant in Kogi.”
Bello, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Petra Anyegbule, said: “This is especially sad and painful coming on the first anniversary of the death of another illu-strious Kogi son and legal luminary, James Ocholi (SAN), the erstwhile Minister of State for Labour and Employment, who died in active service.
“I pray that a permanent stop will come to the loss of prominent citizens of the state in their prime, and the loss of tapping from their well of wisdom.”
The governor said Adinoyi-Ojo will be remembered for his good character, intellectual sagacity, embedded candour, manifest brilliance, literary fecundity and unflinching love for the progress and development of the state that made him aspire to the highest political office in the land.
For former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, Adinoyi-Ojo’s death was shocking and painful beyond words.
In a statement released by his media office in Abuja yesterday, the former Vice President and a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, APC, said he had known Ojo for nearly three decades.
He described Ojo, who was his former spokesperson as an irreplaceable asset who was loyal and reliable until the very last day.
Saraki, Mark mourn
Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, and his predecessor, Senator David Mark, have both expressed sadness over Adinoyi-Ojo’s death.
While Saraki described him as a quintessential intellectual, consummate administrator, complete gentleman and a detribalised Nigerian, former Senate President, David Mark, said his death was devastating.
Saraki, in a statement by his Special Adviser, Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, said that Onukaba would be missed for his contributions to the growth and development of the country, both in the media, as well as literary and political fields.
On his part, Senator Mark in a statement by his Media Assistant, Paul Mumeh, said that the late journalist was a patriotic Nigerian, who worked and believed in the sanctity of the unity and peace of the nation.
His death, one too many— Awoniyi
Former Deputy Governor of Kogi State, Yomi Awoniyi, described the death of Adinoyi-Ojo as one loss too many for the state to contend with.
In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Abu Michael, Awoniyi prayed God to grant his soul peaceful rest, prayed God to grant the family he left behind the fortitude to bear the loss and urged them to be consoled by the good works and legacies he left on the sands of time.