“What next now to me, is more than just living on this earth. Looking towards heaven, God’s abode, is the Ultimate and this is what is paramount to my actions. These include – Service to my God Almighty and my fellow human beings. Living a daily life of purity as much as humanly possible, praising God always for His grace etc and finally looking forward to living in His presence in new Jerusalem, where angels and archangels sing glorious and harmonious songs to praise God all the day round. THIS IS THE ULTIMATE! Words of Late Chief John Oluwabayofunmi Alabi, as recorded in his notes.
A SHORT BIOGRAPHY OF CHIEF JOHN ALABI – April 21, 1930 – April 4, 2015
Chief John Alabi was born into the Ilemiya family in Afao, Ikere Ekiti of Late Chief Osanyinlusi Alabi and Mrs Emily Fijolagbe Alabi (nee Odeyemi). His father was a career farmer and renowned traditional gynaecologist/paeditrcian, while his mother was a successful clay pot maker and hair stylist.
Chief Alabi attended the St. Johns African Church School, Afao, Ikere Ekiti from January 1937 to December 1945 for the First School Leaving Certificate Examination. In January 1948 he proceeded to Christ’s School, Ado Ekiti for his secondary education and passed out in enviable grades in December 1953.
After this attended the Government Clerical Training School, Osogbo for a course in Stenography. He completed the course in June 1955 and enrolled at the University College, Ibadan in September 1957 and graduated in June 1961. Later he attended the University of Ibadan between September 1971 and June 1972 for a postgraduate Diploma Course in Education.
In September 1977, Chief Alabi enrolled at the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo) for a Masters Degree course in Guidance and Counselling and graduated in June 1978. In 2006 he completed a Diploma course in Computer Education at a local Computer Centre (God’s Love Communications, Ikere Ekiti).
He authored two books on Physics – a subject he was passionate about, all through his life.
First School Leaving Certificate
Cambridge Overseas School Certificate
R.S.A. Stages II and III in Shorthand and Typewriting.
B.Sc (SPECIAL) Honours – Physics
Postgraduate Diploma in Education with Distinction in Practical Teaching
M.Ed (Guidance and Counselling)
Diploma in Computer Education
Chief John Alabi started as pupil teacher at Emmanuel African Church School, Arigidi Ekiti (now Ayegbaju Ekiti) between January and March 1946. He also served as a Pupil-Teacher at St Saviour’s African Church School, Ara, Ikole Ekiti between January 1947 and December 1947.
After his education at Christ School Ado Ekiti, he worked briefly as a teacher at St. John’s African Church School, Afao, Ikere Ekiti between January and August 1954. On completion of his Stenography training, he was appointed as Stenographer/Confidential Secretary in the Ministry of Finance, Ibadan, Western Region of Nigeria from July 1955 to September 1957.
On graduation from the University College Ibadan in 1961 he took up employment at Ayede Grammar School, Ayede Ekiti on 5th June, 1961. He resigned this appointment on 28th February 1967 to take up the job of Head of Science/Sectional Head at Ilesha Grammar School, Ilesha from March 1967 to March 1971. After this, he was transferred on promotion as Vice Principal to Imade College, Owo, from April 1971 to December 1972.
Thereafter, Chief John Alabi worked in the following schools before his retirement:-
Principal: Moba Grammar School, Otun Ekiti. January 1973 to August 1975.
Principal: Okebadan High School, Ibadan. September 1975 to December 1975.
Principal: Ifaki Grammar School, Ifaki Ekiti. January 1976 to August 1977
Vice Principal: Acquinas College, Akure. Septmember 1977 to August 1978
Principal: Ekiti Parapo College, Ido Ekiti. September 1978 to September 1983
Principal: Divisional Teachers’ College, Ado Ekiti. September 1983 to August 1985.
Principal: Ise-Emure Grammar School. 1st September to 30th September, 1985.
Retired from Ondo State Teaching Service on 30th September, 1985.
September 1989 to July 1994 – Part Time Physics lecturer Ondo State University, Ado Ekiti (now Ekiti State University)
SERVICE TO HUMANITY
Ever since he was old enough to know what responsibility is, Chief John Alabi did his best for the service of his family, community and the state in numerous positions.
As a young man in the Afao community, he directed the affairs of the Afao Youngsters Association for a number of years. The association was formed to give youths in the community an orientation towards hard work, discipline and service. As a student, he was an active member of the Ikere Youths Progressive Movement (later known as Ikere Progressive Movement), based in Ibadan.
Since he retired from active service and became full resident of Ikere Ekiti, Chief John Alabi worked with other citizens to develop the community. He served in various committees along the years working towards the progress and development of the town he so much loved. Among the projects he participated in were the Water Project; Ikere Day Celebrations; Police-Community Relationship, etc.
As a citizen of Ondo State, Chief Alabi served on the Primary School Management Board and a member of the Ondo State College of Education, Ikere Ekiti.
SERVICE TO PROFESSIONAL BODIES
Chief John Alabi was an active member of the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT) and the Science Teachers Association of Nigeria (STAN). When he rose to the grade of a Principal, he became a member of the All Nigeria Conference of Principals of Secondary School (ANCOPPS) in Ondo State. He served as the Chairman of the Ekiti West Zone as well as the Ero Sub Zone of the conference. In 1984, he became the President of the Conference of Principals of Teachers Colleges in Ondo State and the first Vice President of the National Conference until his retirement in 1985.
Although the young John Alabi was born into a non-Christian family, he had the taste of Christianity in the primary school. In his words “In those days, there was no separation between school and church. It was mandatory to become a Christian as long as you were attending the school. This was how I became a Christian and took the name, JOHN when I got baptized in 1938 in the African Church.”
Chief John Alabi became a communicant (full Christian) in December 1951, when during a confirmation service in Christ School, Ado Ekiti, the then Anglican Archbishop of West Africa, L.G. Vining laid hands on him. And since that time till his passing on, he never departed from studying and practicing the words of God. On 28th February, 1988, he was installed as the Gbejoniyi of the African Church Cathedral, Afao Ikere Ekiti. And in 1994, he was appointed member of the Caretaker committee for the development of the new St. James’ African Church, Kajola, Ikere Ekiti.
A straightforward, honest, contented and reliable man he was. He valued good name more than riches.
Chief John Alabi will be laid to rest on September 5th, 2015 in his home town Ikere Ekiti.
He is survived by children and grandchildren.