It was a mixed-blend of tributes, salutations and tears as family members, well-wishers, academics, and communications community and stakeholders gathered to mourn and for some celebrate the farewell of media icon and renowned scholar, Lai Oso, who was a media professor at Lagos State University, until his death in a fatal motor accident. All his
It was a mixed-blend of tributes, salutations and tears as family members, well-wishers, academics, and communications community and stakeholders gathered to mourn and for some celebrate the farewell of media icon and renowned scholar, Lai Oso, who was a media professor at Lagos State University, until his death in a fatal motor accident. All his obsequies took place at Sagamu his hometown, in Ogun state. His internment was on Friday.
Professor Lai Oso, a renowned scholar, academic, and mentor whose exceptional contributions to communication and media studies touched many lives, died in a tragic accident on June 24 while returning from Delta State University, where he had gone as an external examiner for PhD students.
Expectedly, his burial, was attended by dignitaries and notable personalities from various countries, who paid tributes to Professor Oso’s indelible mark in academia. Eloquent eulogies were delivered, highlighting his intellectual brilliance and his humanitarian impact on society. There were several testimonies of lives touched and moulded.
Professor Pate Umar, Vice Chancellor of the Federal University, Kashere, Gombe State, described Professor Lai Oso as a simple man who was altruistic and committed to the development of the country regardless of the stakes. The Don said: “the late Professor spent his life remaining dedicated to the interests of people and how the nation will be led to a successful course.” He added the impact of Professor Lai Oso on his family, despite the age and professional gap between them.
Speaking of the extraordinary contributions and dedication of the deceased scholar, Umar Pate, a professor of media history said that the communications professor invested himself in the development of the nation without any selfishness. Additionally, he said that he has the nation’s professionals’ full respect in the communication field and urged them to follow in his footsteps.
Alhaji Waheed Kadiri, the former Rector of the Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, described Professor Oso as a man of service and an icon who was not only loyal to his job but also to him as his immediate boss at the polytechnic “Loyalty—that’s the perfect description I can give to Dr Oso. He was my Deputy rector for four years, and I used to take annual leave in those years, but I never once sensed any disloyalty in him. He was even closer to my child than me in his education pursuit, Oso Influenced his education from primary school to the undergraduate level.” he said.
In his tribute, the Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, represented by the state’s former commissioner of works, Engineer Ade Akinsanya, expressed his condolences to Professor Oso’s family and well-wishers. He described the professor as knowledgeable and influential in Ogun State and the country at large. Engineer Akinsanya wishes the family and the country the fortitude to bear the loss of a gem after reading the governor’s tribute.
In his sermon, Apostle Lawrence Achudume, General Overseer of Victory Life Church, shared his relationship with Professor Oso, who was also a pastor in one of the church’s branches. He described the professor as a man who lived with contentment, selflessness, humility, and kindness. He urged the congregation to emulate Oso’s lifestyle of service to his family, country, and people, noting that he impacted everyone he met without regard for his own gain.
Apostle Achudume also slammed the government and public officeholders, calling for better governance in the country. He advocated for politicians to rule without selfishness and greed, just like the deceased professor. “The government must do better in this country. If the roads were good, maybe Professor Oso’s death would have been averted. Our government needs to do better. even as we speak, the same road where he had an accident is still left unattended to”, he said.
Eulogising Professor Oso in his sermon, the Preacher further stated, “Prof. Oso lived his life for us all. He had the opportunity to make money but he allowed self-contentment to be his watchword. “A man contented and satisfied in little but doing good to all. As for him, Oso whose burial attracted hundreds of well-wishers around the globe for the four days his rites of passage lasted, will be long remembered for living for others, giving all he has to make students, friends, widows, and all those who come across him better beings.
The International Press Centre in Ogba, Lagos, described Professor Oso as a man who has made enormous contributions to the development of communication and mass media in Nigeria, as well as being instrumental in raising awareness about the organization’s library and resources, such as by referring undergraduate and postgraduate students to the organization for research materials on media independence, press freedom, access to information, and the role of the media in democracy, among other things.
A statement by Olutoyin Ayoade, the IPC Communication Officer, quoted the Executive Director of the organization, Mr Lanre Arogundade, as eulogising Professor Oso’s thirst for research knowledge which he described as his strength.
Mr. Arogundade further stated that “Professor Oso was a scholar who encouraged others to become scholars. He constantly explored new frontiers of knowledge and was never tired of writing. The last time we spoke, he requested for a chapter in the book: State of the Media in Nigeria 1996 published when I was the Chairman of the Lagos State Council of Nigeria Union of Journalists. Behold, he wrote the first chapter titled: Journalism and Social Responsibility: Between Objectivity and Advocacy. Apparently, he needed the chapter for another research work he was undertaking. It was his thirst for research that made him extremely knowledgeable in different areas of Mass Media and communication”.
IPC also expressed condolences to Oso’s family and friends, wishing for the repose of his soul.