A Glimpse Into The Life Of HRM, Oba Prof. Saka Adelola Matemilola (Otileta VII), The Olowu Of Owu, As He Approaches His First Coronation Anniversary- By Simeon Ganzallo 

In the historic Owu Kingdom, a gem ascended the throne, graced with dignity and imbued with purpose. His Royal Majesty, Oba Prof. Saka Adelola Matemilola (Otileta VII), the 14th Olowu of Owu, has embarked on a resplendent journey, interweaving scholarly accomplishments, consummate professionalism, and profound contributions to his community and society at large. As his coronation approaches, this piece delves into the chronicles of his life and feats, shedding light on the chapters that have etched his extraordinary life.

Inception of Influence: Early Years, Scholarly Pursuits, and Family Ties

Oba Saka Adelola Matemilola’s influence commenced with his formative years and scholastic quests. Born on August 4, 1964 in Ibadan to the family of Suleiman Gbolahan Matemilola and Aliratu Matemilola in Abeokuta. Kindled by a thirst for knowledge, he embarked on an educational pilgrimage that traversed the corridors of St. Patrick’s in Lagos and the precincts of Abeokuta Grammar School, Abeokuta. His intellectual curiosity then led him to the halls of the University of Ibadan, where he attained a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering with the distinction of First-Class Honors. This milestone marked a prelude to his subsequent triumphs, culminating in the attainment of a Master of Science degree in the same institution.

Between his academic and personal accomplishments lies an intricate genealogy that is linked to the Otileta Ruling House. This lineage, an embodiment of heritage, tradition, and cultural resonance, encapsulates the essence of his ancestry. Oba Saka’s fidelity to family values is mirrored in his roles as devoted husband to Olori Adijat Bamidele Matemilola and Olori Ameenah Adeleye Matemilola, and as a loving father to his progeny; Princess Aminat Moyosore Matemilola, Prince AbdulMuizz Ayokanmi Matemilola, Prince AbdulKareem Olusegun Matemilola, and Princess Hadhrat Jadesola Matemilola. These familial bonds stand as a testament to his dedication to unity and preservation of core principles.

A Trailblazing Journey: Engineering Career and Industry Impact

Oba Saka Matemilola has had a great career within the realm of engineering and academia. His acumen in Applied Mechanics and Petroleum Engineering catapulted him into the echelons of expertise. Over the span of three decades, Oba Matemilola’s career flourished, embellished with pivotal roles in revered institutions. From his tenure as Chief Petroleum Engineer at FIRST Exploration & Petroleum Development Company Ltd. to his erudite contributions to venerable institutions such as the University of Ibadan and the University of Cambridge, his narrative serves as a testament to unswerving dedication and an unwavering quest for excellence. 

A pivotal phase of his journey saw him being the Regional Resource Volume Coordinator for Shell Upstream International, where he monitored the hydrocarbon resource portfolio for Shell entities in sub-Saharan Africa. His affiliations as Visiting Associate Professor at the African University of Science and Technology, Abuja, and visiting Scholar at the Centre of Excellence in Geosciences & Petroleum, University of Benin, further underscore his commitment to advancing the frontiers of Petroleum Engineering and Geosciences.

Rising to Majesty: Selection and Coronation as the 14th Olowu of Owu

Oba Saka Adelola Matemilola’s life assumed a momentous trajectory when he was chosen to inherit the mantle of leadership as the revered Olowu of Owu. This juncture of transformation is a historic landmark, bridging tradition and a promising future. His selection in July 2022 and his subsequent coronation ceremony in October of 2022 reverberated as an epic event, not solely for his personal life but for the entire Kingdom of Owu. 

The coronation ceremony was attended by dignitaries and nobles from across Nigeria and beyond. Former governors including Olusegun Osoba and Senator Ibikunle Amosun graced the event, accompanied by eminent government dignitaries and revered traditional leaders such as the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi (Ojaja III), the Obong of Calabar, the Olu of Warri, and the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo, among others.

Sculpting Legacies: Altruistic Endeavors and Honors

Embracing the spirit of progress and societal upliftment, Oba Saka Matemilola’s pursuits have etched an indelible impact on society. His contributions span the spectrum, from the provision of fundamental resources like clean water and power generators to his roles as a mentor, educator, and visionary custodian. His influence goes beyond geographical confines, providing aid in the education sector and nurturing the growth of young leaders across diverse institutions.

His contributions and philanthropic ventures have earned him accolades, including the Professional Excellence Award, Outstanding Leadership Award, and Academic Mentoring Award. His presence has also graced the pages of Hart’s Who’s Who in Science and Engineering, while his scholarly contributions immortalized him through a University Endowment in perpetuity, commemorating his place as the epitome of leadership and public service in the Faculty of Technology at the University of Ibadan.

In summation, His Royal Majesty, Oba Prof. Saka Adelola Matemilola (Otileta VII), the 14th Olowu of Owu, is a beacon of inspiration and accomplishment. As his coronation anniversary draws near, his life reverberates as a paean to the potency of knowledge, perseverance, and an undying will to elevate and empower. Within the mosaic of his legacy, forged in excellence, family values, and an unbreakable connection to heritage, Oba Saka Matemilola continues to chart a course for Owu’s tomorrow, infusing it with the promise of progress and boundless potential.

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