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A former Vice-Chancellor of University of Ibadan, Prof. Idowu Olayinka, has mourned the death of a renowned historian, Prof. Obaro Ikime.

Olayinka, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ibadan on Wednesday, said with Ikime’s death, Nigeria has lost a renowned global scholar and doyen of Ibadan School of History.

He said that the news of the death the scholar came as a rude shock, although he lived up to the age of 86.

The former vice-chancellor described Ikime as one of the most famous alumni which the University College, Ibadan, and its successor, the University of Ibadan, had ever produced.

“Prof. Ikime earned his doctoral degree at age of 29 and became a professor of History at age of 37.

“He was a doyen of the world-renowned Ibadan School of History as a pioneer in historical studies.

“He served the university diligently in many capacities, including Dean of Arts, Director of Institute of African Studies and member of council.

“Prof. Ikime was Hall Master, Ransome Kuti Hall, which was his hall of residence, as an undergraduate student of University College, Ibadan.

“He also served for many years on the National Executive Committee of the University of Ibadan Alumni Association Worldwide.

“Even after he was compulsorily retired in 1990 during the Federal Military Government of General Ibrahim Babangida, he still served as an adjunct professor of History,” Olayinka said.

The former vice-chancellor commiserated with his wife, children and grand-children as well as his friends and associates.

Son of the deceased, Mr Mazino Ikime, said though his father was sick for quite a while, he had gone to rest with the Lord.

“There is nothing better than a good name and that is what my dad has left behind.

“Since his demise on Tuesday, people have continued to speak well of him, his impacts and how he served God and humanity.

“As a teacher, he touched the lives of a great number of people. His students spoke well of him and in his lifetime, he was honoured by his students at History department of the university.

“There is no greater reward for a teacher than to be honoured in his lifetime by his students and these were students who might not have necessarily passed through him.

“He retired from the university at a time, but they have access to his works and hear testimonies from other students about him and my dad was greatly touched.

“He was an epitome of a great teacher owing to his patience and understanding. He was always concerned with guiding and bringing out the best in anybody who passed through him,” he said.

Mazino said he and his siblings learned patience and listening skills from their father.

“He was a very effective communicator; he speaks eloquently and writes brilliantly. I am going to miss him as a great friend, counsellor and father.

“My dad was a great, humble and self-assured man who hailed from a tiny hamlet in Delta, called Alibueze,” he said.

Also, the Head, Department of History in the university, Prof. Rasheed Olaniyi, said that the late Ikime contributed significantly to historiography in Nigeria and the entire African continent.

“He was a great scholar who was known globally. We have lost a great scholar. We are always very proud of him,” Olaniyi said.



By oyonews

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