OKE ADO IN RETROSPECT: Oke Ado in Ibadan is the home of first set of indigenous intellectuals in south western Nigeria - The People's Voice


Friday, November 25, 2022

OKE ADO IN RETROSPECT: Oke Ado in Ibadan is the home of first set of indigenous intellectuals in south western Nigeria

By Our Correspondent

Oke Ado is the home for a status class of educated people engaged in the complex mental labours that critique, guide, and lead in shaping the culture and politics of their society.

Ado's Quarter is very symbolic.  Oke Ado was named after a man named Ado, an Ibadan warrior. Ado was a contemporary of Foko. He and Foko were settled at the areas where they were agreed upon then as an outpost of Ibadan, to protect Ibadan from any attack that might come from that flank. The saying used to be current in those days that went as follows: "Ado o dana, Foko o sinmi" which means "Foko will not be at rest unless he sees Ado's fire". 

This saying arose from the fact that Ado being further away at the outpost than Foko, Foko was always looking out for the smoke of Ado's early morning cooking fire as a sign that all was well. If Foko did not see the smoke of Ado's  fire it is a sign that war had taken Ado away in the night and that all was not well with the outpost.

The Oke in Ado means Quarter not hill as this is the quarter of Ado, because it has no noticeable hills.

Oke-Ado was the original home of the Ado family. Ado migrated from Eje’s compound in Oyo town. He was a famous, brave and courageous warrior who had initially settled with Afokolaja – shortened to ‘Foko, another notable Ibadan warrior.

Men and women who would eventually shape the cause of Nigeria’s history, be it as academics, politicians, business persons and administrative elites once lived at Oke Ado.

Awolowo navigated his route to Oke-Bola, which is very close to Oke Ado through his vendor, Megida Abass Aleshinloye.

Oke-Ado was the homes of Akin Deko, S.A Tinubu of Iresi, Justice Morgan, Chief Justice of the Western Region, who succeeded the Ghanaian QuarshieIdun as Chief Justice, Justice Olujide Somolu, who was Chief Awolowo’s best man in 1937, Daniel Olorunfemi Fagunwa on Ajanla street, Amos Tutuola, author of the Palm Wine Drinkard, the Otudekos, the Craigs, the Italian Construction firm of L. Dalberto, the home of popular textile trader and woman activist, Alhaja Humoani Alaga, built in 1951, Bola Babalakin, Ososami, Bola Ige, Chief Isamotu Ashiru, who built his first house in Oke-Ado in 1946, Victor and Wuraola Esan, Omololu Olunloyo, Duro Ogundiran and a host of others.

Victor Esan was one of Ibadan’s early lawyers, while his wife, Wuraola Esan was the founder of the People’s Girls’ Grammar School, Molete and Ibadan’s first woman senator.
At the frontage of Olunloyo’s house was the popular Emperor hotel. Oke-Ado was also the theatre of politics in the Western Region. 

Oke Ado is very symbolic in Ibadan and it is centrally located in Ibadan South West Local Government.

There is coined name that is very symbolic in Ibadan and that is "Titi Oke Ado" This coinedr name is common with the past dwellers, residents or road users of Oke Ado. 

Many entrepreneurs thrived on this popular road. There was a popular Ogunkoya Stores, the Osibodu’s house, the Rab and Lally Chemist of the Irabors, the Toye Chemist, the Palm Chemist of the Akinkugbes, Mama Oyin Adenuga Stores – the mother of the communication guru – Michael Adenuga, behind Dr. Doherty’s hospital, which was also close to the Owuru family house, the Ladega family house. Ladega later became the Ayangburen of Ikorodu. Not very far was the home of Rev.T.T. Solaru whose wife was the leader of the Action Group Women Association.

Oke Ado is also the home of Ibadan construction giant, Oni and sons.

He was nicknamed by "Oni and Shuns" which derogatively became “Oniosunwon.”

Oni and Sons employed so many Ibadan people who were eagerly looking for employment in the construction firm and the name was further embellished to mean “Oni o shun won, owo owo e la nwa” (Oni is not good, it is his money we are after.
An indigenous Tyre manufacturing company, Odutola Tyresole Company, occupied a pride of place at the neighborhood.

On Oke Ado road, a number of prominent roads and streets also veered off the road,  the Agbeni/Ogunpa Junction, the Seventh Day Junction, the Foko Junction, the Liberty Junction, the Ajanla Road, the Osasami Junction, the Imalefalafia Junction, the Peoples’ Girls’ Grammar School street, and so many other streets that took their prominence from the Titi Oke-Ado.

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