Tribute to Mama Sinatu Ogunwale

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Saturday tribute

Olumide Lawal

What can we do without mothers! Nothing. Absolutely nothing. The mothers are the proverbial vehicles, through which children came into the uncertain world, nurtured and brought up to face the challenges of the world. Mothers are builders of nations; a duty that starts from the home fronts through to the children’s different endeavours in life until they can hold their own. Mothers are, that always stand tall and firm behind their children come rain or shine.

One of the priceless women, that have done humanity and womanhood proud, through her selfless services in commerce, religion, parenthood and philanthropy, is Alhaja Sinatu Olalonpe Ogunwale, the Iya Adinni of Osun State. The Iragbiji-born Amazon has impacted positively on her immediate environment through her interactions with the low and mighty. Alhaji Ogunwale, is a virtuous wife of late Pa Lawrence Akanni Ogunwale of blessed memory and indeed a caring and loving mother of her children, even when she had to go the extra miles, inconveniencing herself to see that they are not left behind among their peers in the areas of education as well as making her husband fit and sprightly and well contended. A woman with good heart and beautiful soul. A golden fish without a hiding place

And on August 25, 2019, all roads lead to the palatial Jumokol Building, opposite UBA, Olonkoro, Osogbo, where the Iya Adinni of Osun State, Alhaja Ogunwale was be conferred with the exalted award of FOMWAN Matron on Education, in recognition of her salient but silent contributions to the propagation of the ideals of FOMWAN in the area of education. The ceremony hosted the movers and shakers of the society. Indeed Iyaniwura!

Facts have it, that during her sojourn as matron/caterer at Oke-Iragbiji Grammar Schools in the 60’s through early 70’s, Alhaja Ogunwale ensured, that the students of the famous Oke Iragbiji Grammar school were well fed, through her efficient supervision of the catering department of the  School, where she was fondly called Sweet Mother (Iya Rere, Iya Alaanu). A former student of Oke-Iragbiji Grammar School attested to the fact, that whenever some students were stranded at the school and could not afford transportation money to go home on holiday, Alhaja Ogunwale was always there to offer helping hands for the students through her meager resources. She has the milk of human kindness flowing freely in her veins.

We cannot talk about this woman of immense virtues and illustrious daughter of Osun State in her own right, without mentioning the tremendous motherly love she brought to bear on her children, all of whom are successful in their different callings. She is the proud mother of an outstanding Nigerian, Senator Felix Kolawole Ogunwale (JUMOKOL) who has over the years, spared no expenses in ensuring maximum comfort for his mother, as pay back time for her fantastic care and love for him at infancy and adulthood. Senator Kola Ogunwale sees nothing as too much to offer as life more abundant for Iya Adinni of Osun State, Alhaja Ogunwale.

A mother in Israel indeed. Alhaja Ogunwale is a pillar of strength for the Osun State chapter of Federation of Muslim Women Association of Nigeria, under whose auspices she was honored as The Matron On Education. She richly deserves this great honour, when her past invaluable contributions to the growth of education, as exemplified during her days, as Chief Caterer at Oke-Iragbiji Grammar School is taking into consideration. Be it recalled, that Alhaja Ogunwale was in 2005 at a very colourful ceremony hosted by his son, Senator Kola Ogunwale and which has former Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola and his entire cabinet in attendance, was conferred with the prestigious Islamic title of Iya Adinni of entire Osun State, with the approval of the then Grand Imam of Osun –in –Council. That auspicious occasion went a long way to show that Alhaja Ogunwale is a woman with honour and esteem in her homeland.

The August 25, 2019 occasion of her conferment as the FOMWAN Matron On Education, was another great testimony to her relentless pursuits of the growth of knowledge for all and sundry; as the saying goes, that if you think education is expensive, try ignorance.

Alhaja Ogunwale, the Iya Adinni of entire Osun State, even at the advance age of one hundred plus, is still focused, agile, pragmatic, effective and efficient in her different human endeavours. She radiates love and affection for all without prejudice. Her home is home to all, as she is a totally detribalized Nigerian, who enjoys displaying charity and hand of fellowship to the less-privileged, just as she demands little from life. Her children, particularly Senator Ogunwale takes after this great attribute of Hajia Ogunwale – a cheerful giver; a lover and promoter of education, which has seen FOMWAN Group of Schools growing in leaps and bounds.

The entire Papa Lawrence Akanni Ogunwale family at home and in Diaspora and indeed, the Iragbiji Community, are very proud of her sterling achievements among womanhood. May she continue to grow in good health under the divine guidance of the Almighty God and age gracefully.

––Lawal wrote from Ede, Osun State.

Pix: Alhaja Ogunwale.jpg