Alhaji (Chief) Ruholla Ajibola Salako is the uncle of the new Ogun State deputy governor, Mrs Noimot Salako-Oyedele and the head of Salako family, the largest family chain in Aworiland, Ota, Ogun State. In this exclusive interview with OgunNewsExpress, Alhaji Salako disclosed intimate details of the growing up of the deputy governor. He also explained how her father would have probably stopped her from becoming the deputy governor of the state if he was alive....
Congratulations on the emergence of your daughter, Noimot Salako-Oyedele as the Deputy Governor of Ogun State
Thank you very much, and we give glory to God because it isn’t by our efforts, but God’s mercy.
What was the family’s reaction when Noimot Salako-Oyedele was announced the Ogun State deputy governor-elect
The entire Salako family is happy, the elders, the youth and our in-laws are all happy that, this happened in our life time. We remain joyous on this as we continue to thank God for this rare privilege.
What about her father
I am her father but it’s sad to state here that her biological father, Professor Lateef Akinola Salako is late. Let me share this with you, ordinarily Noimot wouldn’t have become the deputy governor of Ogun state today if her father were alive, because I’m so sure that my brother would have kicked against her political moves.
(Speaking in his local dialect); He would have asked her ‘what brought you to this? No!’ And that would have been the end. But fortunately and unfortunately, he is no more today and the girl has a bit of wisdom to have carried the entire family along in her political journey and so we all supported her. Although, we would have supported her to achieve her ambition if her father was alive, but that would have been possible only if she informed us before telling her father. But if otherwise, she may not have become the deputy governor of the state because her father was a principled man.
Tell us about the growing up of the deputy governor, the kind of person she is and how she has grown to become the pride of the entire family and Ota community.
Noimot grew up in Ibadan and Lagos, but she comes home frequently. She grew up in Ibadan, where the father was a Professor at the University of Ibadan.
She grew up in the university community with a no nonsense father and mother. The family later moved to Lagos and since then she’s been coming home at least once in two weeks. So basically, she’s not a stranger to Ota.
What kind of person is she
Oooh! She’s a very lovely daughter. Now let me tell you one thing today, Noimot was trained to achieve greatness in life. The mother of the deputy governor played a prominent role in training her.
Let me share this with you. Like I said earlier, I used to visit the family at my convenience. Most of these periods, I stayed with them for about two to three days before going back to my base. An incident occurred during one of the visits, and that was when I knew Noimot would go places in life. In fact all the children of the woman would go places because of the manner she trained them
The incident I was talking about; I visited the family in Ibadan in one of my regular visits in company of two of my friends. We got there when they were about having lunch and the family was at the dining table, about to start eating, but before we could say good afternoon, Noimot’s mother had asked the children to leave the dining table for us and have the meal instead.
She said, “Leave the table for your uncles to eat ooo,” and without grudges, without protest, Noimot and her siblings left the table quietly while we ate the meal prepared for them.
In fact, being modest, I don’t think any mother will do that today. Rather the mother would only welcome such visitors, ask them to sit and probably prepare another meal for them.
That singular act struck me! These children are well trained and well disciplined, I thought deeply. Though, I don’t think the children and the mother will remember the incident I’m talking about now, but that was what made me respect Noimot’s mother more. So, in all sincerity, the woman did a lot bringing up the deputy governor and her siblings and I’m happy today that the seed she sown in her has brought forth massive harvests.
Sir, our findings show the Salako family seems to be the largest in Ota. Why is this so?
Haaa! My son, its God ooo and nothing else, however, I count myself very lucky because it is during my time as the head of the family that one of our children becomes a deputy governor of the state. Though, one of our sons, Kazeem Salako was once a member of the Federal House of Representatives, but Noimot’s feat so far is the highest to have come during my time as the head of the family and….
(Cuts in)… And now that you have a daughter as the deputy governor of the state, how does the family intend to make use of that opportunity to contribute more to the development of Ota, especially resolving issues affecting the community in the areas of chieftaincy disputes, physical and structural development and also….
(Cuts in)….that’s the purveyor of our kabiyesi, the Olota and the chiefs without being immodest, I think I shouldn’t dabbles into that, it’s strictly meant for the palace.
Tell us more about yourself sir
I am Ruholla Ajibola Salako. I have chieftaincy titles; I am the Asoju Oba of Ota Awori Kingdom and the Olori Musulumi of Ota as well. If you add this together, you will address me as Alhaji Chief Ruollah Adebayo Salako
You were one time a journalist, can you let us into your journalism experience
That was an interesting period and memories that can never be forgotten. When I was involved in journalism I worked with the Sketch and Nigeria Tribune as a line reporter.
My memorable moments was traveling. For instance, The Nigerian Tribune sent me to several countries. I went to Russia to cover the Olympics in 1980. I was also sent to the United States of America to cover the swearing in of President Ronald Regan and as well as going to India to cover its independence. I traveled a lot then, in fact I traveled all over the world through journalism.
How do you see the incoming government of Dapo Abiodun and Noimot Salako-Oyedele
Well, I can’t say much but with the combination of the duo at the helms of affair of the state, I strongly believe by the end of their first tenure, they would have performed so well such that the people of the state would plead for their second term.