Oba Adesoji Aderemi upon ascension to the throne in 1930, immediately began his modernist policies for the growth and development of Ife Land and the Yoruba Nation as a whole. He founded Oduduwa College in 1933 and aided the installation of the Ife Water Works in 1935. The symbolic significance of the achievement of Oba Aderemi’s role as Oni which was equally metaphoric was the introduction of electricity to the town of Ife, heralding a totality of civilisation.
He brought telephone services to Ile-Ife in 1938 and built a new official residence for the Ooni. In 1944 opened the Seventh Day Adventist Mission Hospital. Oba Aderemi built The Ile-Ife Museum to display artefacts of Ife origin in front of the palace and this has been converted to a National Museum. As a devout Christian, Oba Aderemi built the iconic St. Peter’s church Iremo.
These are but a very few developments witnessed during the reign of Oba Adesoji Aderemi as Ooni of Ife. He brought so much development to Ife by influencing the provision of amenities like motorable roads, electricity schools, factories, banks and other business ventures that provided employment of the people of Ile-Ife. Please find below some of the legacies left behind by the visionary.
Obafemi Awolowo University
The University of Ife as it was then known is a federal government owned and operated Nigerian university.
Oba Adesoji Aderemi used his position of influence to advocate that the proposed University of Western Region be sited at Ile-Ife in 1962, in recognition of the ancestral status of Ile-Ife as the religious and cultural matrix of the Yorubas.
The University started from the current Ibadan North Campus of the present Ibadan Polytechnic and finally moved to Ile-Ife in 1967, which was, to Aderemi, the fulfillment of a long cherished dream. It was later renamed in honour of Chief Obafemi Awolowo (1909–1987), the first premier of the Western Region of Nigeria.
Oduduwa College Ile-Ife
Oba Adesoji Aderemi founded Oduduwa College (one of the oldest secondary schools in Nigeria) in 1932. The school is located at Sabo, Ile-Ife and boasts of notable Nigerians like. Oba Aderemi built the first structure in the school (pictured above) which still stands today. The school has now been made a model school with modern buildings and state of the art facilities. The school benefited the people of Ife and beyond and produced a lot of notable Nigerians.
Seventh Day Adventist Mission Hospital
Ife Museum, Ile-Ife (1948)
The Iconic Glass House
Ultramodern Ooni's Palace
Cusmomised Rolls Royce
Below is a more comprehensive list of the achievements of the late sage.
- Founding of Ifetedo Town.
- Introduction of Dispensaries and Postal Agencies into the Ife town and district.
- Introduction of Native Courts into the District.
- Founding of Ife Town Central School.
- Laying out of Building Plots in Ife Town.
- Installation of Ife Waterworks.
- Introduction of Maternity Centres into the Ife Town and District.
- Award of King’s Medal to chiefs.
- Installation of Telephone Service.
- Building of new official residence for the Oni in the Palace.
- Holding of Obas Conference at Ife.
- Grant of site on which the Seventh Day Adventists Mission Hospital now stands.
- Founding of Origbo Central School.
- Founding of Murumba College.
- Founding of Anglican Girl’s School, Ile-Ife. Award of Hon CMG.
- Establishment of Magistrate’s Court, Ife.
- Inauguration of Ife District Council.
- Opening of the Seventh Day Adventist Mission Hospital.
- Introduction of Ife Reading Room.
- Appointment of the Oni as member of House of Assembly, Western Nigeria.
- Stone Walling of Ife town streets preparatory to tarring.
- Founding of Ansar-udeen School, Ipetumodu.
- Appointment of the Oni as member of the Legislative Council of Nigeria.
- Member of the Nigeria Cocoa Marketing Board, and as Director
Nigeria Produce Marketing Company Limited.
- Tarring of Ife Town Streets commenced.
Inauguration of Egbe Omo Oduduwa at Ife.
- The Oni visited England and served as delegate at the African Conference, London.
- The Ife Museum and the Native Authority Secretariat were built.
- Establishment of Origbo District Council.
- Inauguration of Ife Branch of the National Bank.
- Award of Hon KBE to the Oni.
- Appointment of the Oni as Minister-without Portfolio in the Nigerian House of Representatives.
- Introduction of Town Planning.
- Founding of Ife Divisional Teacher Training College.
- The Oni represented Western Region of Nigeria at the Coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth.
- The Oni attended the London Conference on the Nigerian Constitution
- Appointment of the Oni as President of the House of Chiefs, Western Region.
- Installation of Radio Rediffusion Service.
- Rebuilding of Oja’fe Market.
- Tarring of Ashipa-Ipetumodu-Edunabon Road.
- Founding of Ife Grammar School.
- Founding at Ife of the OyoOndo Provinces Local Authority Grade II College.
- Installation of Electric Lights.