Friday, 13 September 2013
AGAGU DIES AT 65, FORMER GOVERNOR ONDO STATE
AGAGU IS DEAD Former governor of Ondo State, Olusegun Agagu has passed on. Agagu, who also served as minister of power under Obasanjo administration reportedly slumped and died this evening Friday September 13th at his home in Lagos. He was 65 years old. May his soul rest in peace... A former Governor of Ondo State, Dr Olusegun Agagu, is dead. He was aged 65. Agagu, who returned from the US on Thursday, reportedly slumped in Ikoyi, where he was having a meeting with Ondo indigenes, on Friday evening. Agagu’s former Chief Press Secretary, Yemi Olowolabi, said the former governor was not sick and had just returned from a 20-day trip abroad. Olowolabi, who worked with him for more than four years, described his former boss as “a great man, a first-class intellectual and an astute administrator.” Ondo State Governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, described the death of his predecessor as shocking, adding that Ondo has lost a colossus, whose vacuum would be difficult to fill. Mimiko said, “He would be remembered as a consummate politician and lecturer, who imparted knowledge to many people across the world.” Former Governor of Ogun State, Segun Osoba, told Saturday PUNCH on telephone that Agagu was very respectful. He said, “I got to know him when he was deputy to former governor of old Ondo State, Bamidele Olomilua. He carried himself with dignity. He was loyal to Olomilua during the days of the Social Democratic Party. Agagu should rest in peace.” In his reaction, former governor of Oyo State, Adebayo Alao-Akala, described Agagu’s death as shocking. He said, “It is sad. He came back from abroad yesterday with his wife. They were having a meeting with Ondo State people. Alex Akinyele was there. He slumped. It is shocking, devastating. We will all miss him. I can’t believe he will just die.” Agagu’s schoolmate at the University of Ibadan, Senator Olu Alabi, who is a former Governing Board Chairman, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, said, “We were together in UI. We co-funded United Nigerian Congress Party and the Peoples Democratic Party. I don’t know what to tell his wife, Funke.” Member, PDP Board of Trustees, Chief Ebenezer Babatope, said: “This is tragic news. I’m shattered. He never held grudges.” Director of Publicity, Ondo PDP, Mr Ayodele Fadaka, who broke down in tears over the phone, described the death of the late geologist as great loss to Ondo and Nigeria. It was gathered that he ate lunch at home in Ikoyi before heading for a meeting on Lagos mainland, where he slumped. Subsequently, he was rushed to a private hospital in Yaba but he was transferred to Military Hospital, Ikoyi, where he was pronounced dead. His corpse was still at the military hospital as at the time of filing this report. MORE INFORMATION OF THE AGAGU. Olusegun Kokumo Agagu (born 16 February 1948) was Governor of Ondo State in Nigeria from 29 May 2003 until February 2009, when a court voided his re-election as governor on account of electoral irregularities. He was replaced as governor of Ondo State by Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, his arch political rival based on a court injunction. His name, Olusegun, means "God is victorious". He is a member of the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP). Educational Background He commenced his elementary education at St. Luke’s Anglican School, (now known as St. Paul’s Anglican School) Okitipupa, in 1954. In January 1958, he moved to live with his cousin, Edward Fagbohun in Ibadan, where he continued his primary education at Ebenezer African Church School, Oke-Ado, Ibadan. In 1959 he transferred to Kano in 1959 where he studied at the Ebenezer Methodist School and Baptist Primary School Sabon-Gari, Kano. He then moved back to Ebenezer African Church School, Ibadan where he completed his primary education in 1960. Thereafter, he was in Ibadan Grammar School between January 1961 and 1967 where he passed his West African School Certificate and the Higher School Certificate examinations. He was admitted to the University of Ibadan in 1968 to study Botany but later changed to Geology in which he graduated with a B.Sc. (Hons) degree in Second Class Upper Division, in 1971. As an undergraduate, his academic record was replete with laurels and prizes. Agagu went to the University of Texas between 1973 and 1974 for his Masters degree in Geology. Returning to Nigeria, he obtained a Ph.D degree in Petroleum Geology from the University of Ibadan in 1978. Career Agagu was appointed by President Olusegun Obasanjo as his first minister of Aviation in 1999. Once, while on a foreign trip, the people of Ondo received false reports of his death. On 29 June 2006 President Olusegun Obasanjo commended him for the work he had done leading Ondo State, saying "You have taken time to plan. We have also seen that the execution of the plan is now showing results." In September 2008 a Senate Ad-Hoc Committee investigating the Transportation Sector summoned Agagu and others as part of its probe of the entire transportation sector, to answer questions about his tenure as Minister of Aviation. On 5 March 2009 Agagu was questioned by the EFCC for Alleged N25Bn spent on OSOPADEC during his administration, while the new administration led by Governor Olusegun Mimiko also commenced probe of contracts awarded in the last six months of his administration.