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By Ademola Adegbamigbe

Professor Kole Omotoso (a native of Akure, Ondo State) who turns 80 today, is a man of many parts. When I visited Pretoria, South Africa, some years ago, I saw his high-definition photographs on massive billboards. As Yebo Gogo, he was the face of a long-running marketing campaign for Vodacom’s mobile phone in that country. The billboards were also scattered in cities like Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and East London.

When he visited our media house in Lagos, I told him what I saw. He smiled and said that’s one of those things “I do for additional income.” True. He is a man who is catholic in his breadth of interests…

As a columnist for TheNEWS, I loved going to corner him at Oga Odia Ofeimun’s house to copy his articles. However late and tasking, he would knock it together in a few minutes and off I would dash back for production. A man of many parts…

He taught in Ife, later South African, Elizade University, Ilara-Mokin, Ondo State, and back to South Africa. The author of Just Before Dawn, is an admirable human being, a moral exemplar and a mentor of many souls.

Happy 80th birthday, Prof.


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