Alade Odunewu, A Journalism Giant And True Nationalist -Tinubu

AladeThe demise of veteran journalism icon, Hadj Alade Idowu Odunewu has been described as the exit of a journalism great by former governor of Lagos State, Bola Ahmed Tinubu. For Tinubu, the death of Odunewu perhaps draws the curtain on that generation of journalists who took the profession to an enviable and reputable status. We remember his sojourn and stewardship at Daily Times with great pride and nostalgia.
“ Alade Idowu Odunewu’s death is like the vanishing of that lone shining star that serves as guide to others. An icon and a journalist par excellence, hardly can anyone in the journalism firmament of our country contest this position with him. He brought to journalism finesse, intellectualism, humour and a rare sense of patriotism. If there was ever a Nigerian Journalism Hall of Fame, Odunewu’s banner must rise above all others because of his commitment to journalism and service to country”.
Tinubu recalls his several encounters and conversations with the late Odunewu and how each time he came away with deep respect and fascination at his fanatical commitment to democratic ideals and his believe that the media holds the key to the sustenance of democracy and the protection of rights, freedoms and liberty. ‘Here was a man who through the years remained unshakable in his commitment to the Nigerian project despite periods of despair and uncertainty. In Odunewu, Nigeria has lost a great disciple, however, it is journalism’s loss that is greater because a moral compass, a mentor and a media authority is no more”.
While condoling with his immediate family, Tinubu charged journalists to pay close attention to the career of Odunewu and learn from it because therein lies the future of journalism. According to Tinubu, unless the present crop of journalists imbibe some of the defining characteristics of late Odunewu, there will be no halt to the onslaught on journalism ethics and reputation that we now experience especially with the advent of social media and online journalism. “Odunewu is what we want all journalists to be; well educated, professionally disciplined, and patriotic and a portent force for change even in the face of adversity and little reward. Today, Nigerians ask for no more from the media”.
His “ Allah De” column, was the finest of satiric writings combining good journalism with deep introspection, intellectualism and wit. He held before us a mirror without flinching even as his writings resonated not only for Nigeria but for a global audience. Alade Odunewu, according to Tinubu has left a void that would be hard to fill.

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