One of our Fathers in the profession, Prof Fola Aboaba has gone home. He was a Professor of Professors of Professors.
Prof Folagbade Olajide Aboaba was an Emeritus Professor of Agricultural Engineering at University of Ibadan and the Pioneering Dean of the Faculty of Technology (1976-1982). I was privileged to be taught by him at both undergraduate and Masters class. He was a mentor to several people and professors.
He was the Executive Secretary of Committee of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Univeersities (1992-1998). He was the founding Pro Chancellor of Redeemers University (2005-2013). He was the Chairman of Governing Council of Federal Institute of Industrial Research Oshodi (FIIRO), Lagos (1976-1979).
He died at the age of 90.
I had a chat with him on Sept 15, 2023 when we were preparing of NIAE conference in Asaba. His response to my asking about him is “Thank you. Ageing slowly but fine. Glory to God. God bless you”. Baba was a lovely, cheerful and good man.
He was one of the founding members of NIAE. He played significant role with other fathers in establishment of National Centre for Agricultural Mechanization, Ilorin. He made substantial contributions to the growth of NSAE (NIAE). His last major public lecture he delivered for NIAE was when we were invited to Presidential villa, Abuja in 2004 by the then Vice President. Late Prof John Ohu was the NIAE National Chairman then. He was always interested in hearing the progress NIAE is making.
He was a member of American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) as well as Institution of Agricultural Engineers UK.
May his soul find eternal rest in God.
Prof Folarin Alonge
NIAE National Chairman
January 22, 2022.
Professor Folagbade Olajide Aboaba was born on 8th March 1933 in Lagos-Nigeria, to late Mr and Mrs J.B Aboaba.
A retired Professor of Agricultural Engineering, Prof. Aboaba was educated at C.M.S Grammar School. Lagos, Nigeria (1944-1949).
He had his University education at the University College, Ibadan, Nigeria (1955-1959); Kings College, University of Durham, Newcastle- Upon-Tyne, England (1960-1962); and University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin, USA (1968-1971) for his B.Sc., M.SC. and PhD respectively.
He was instructor in Agricultural Engineering & Surveying, School of Agriculture, Ibadan, from 1953-1955, after his training at the School (Jan. 1951- Dec. 1952).
On completion of his B.Sc. in 1959 he was posted as Divisional Agricultural Officer in charge of Extension Services in Ondo Division, Western Nigeria Ministry of Agriculture, 1959-1960.After his training and M.Sc at Kings College, Newcastle-on-Tyne, University of Darham he was appointed Agricultural Engineer (later Snr. Agricultural Engineer) in charge of Lagos and Oyo circles in the Engineering Division of the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resource, Western Nigeria (1962-1964). From here he was seconded to the University of Ibadan as Lecturer 2.
His career at the University of Ibadan spanned 27years and he retired as a Professor of Agricultural Engineering in 1992 after serving the University meritoriously.
During his working career as an academic, he has acted as Consultant to many institutions in both the public and private sectors. Some of these were consultant to Economic Commission for Africa on Engineering Institutions (1971), and Federal Agricultural Coordination Unit (FACU) on Oyo State-wide Agricultural Development (1986). He was Chairman, Governing Board, National Centre for Agricultural Mechanization, Ilorin for a short spell in 1994.
National Coordinator/Resource Person, Directorate of Food, Roads & Rural Infrastructure (DFRRI), Lagos in 1990.
He has also served as Chairman, Governing Council, Federal Institute of Industrial Research, Oshodi (FIIRO) from 1976-1979; Chairman, Academic Planning Committee, Federal University of Technology, Abeokuta ( 1983). He was a member of The Governing Council of Yaba College of Technology, Yaba, 1984-1989; chairman, Ibadan University Press and Member, Board of Directors, Caxton Press Nigeria Limited 1986-1988. He also served as Managing Director/, Associated Granite Industries Ltd.
He served the University of Ibadan meritoriously from 1965 till 1992 and was a professor of Agricultural Engineering at the University of Ibadan from 1976-1992. During this period, he was the foundation Dean, Faculty of Technology of the University 1975-1982; and chairman Committee of Deans, from 1977-1978. In this capacity, he acted for the Vice-Chancellor whenever the V.C and the DVC were out of the country.
In addition to delivering the standard inaugural lecture in 1976 he had the privilege of giving his University lecture on behalf of the Faculty of Technology in 1988, an event done once a session by an accomplished academic at the peak of his career in the University system.
Prof. Aboaba has authored many publications in learned journals both locally and internationally.
From 1992-1998, he was Secretary-General, Committee of Vice Chancellors of Nigeria Universities. Whilst serving as Secretary General of the Committee of Vice Chancellors of Nigeria Federal Universities (CVC). Prof. Aboaba also served as the Secretary General of the Committee of Pro Chancellors of Nigerian Federal Universities (CPC). He also served as the foundation Secretary General of the Association of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities (AVCNU) and the Association of Pro Chancellors of Nigerian Universities (APCNC).
Between 1998 and 2005, Prof. Aboaba served as Chairman, Global Bank Plc; After the Bank merger with Intercontinental Bank he was Chairman Intercontinental Finance Ltd Plc.
He was appointed the pioneer Pro-chancellor and chairman of Council of the Redeemer’s University in August, 2005 for two terms, a position he held till August, 2013. During this period, he made great contributions to the University to stabilize and nurture her to a great citadel of learning.
He was awarded an Honorary degree of Doctor of Science (D.Sc) by the Redeemer’s University in September, 2015.
He was also awarded an Honorary degree of Doctor of Science (D.Sc) by the University of Ibadan in November 2019.
Prof. Aboaba was a Pastor and Elder with the Redeemed Christian Church of God; and a member of the Board of Trustees of the Church.
He was married to the late Pastor (Mrs) Olabisi Aboaba and blessed with outstanding and notable children and grandchildren.