On the Passing Away of Emeritus Professor Adelola Adeloye FAS

No Comments » April 18th, 2021 posted by // Categories: General Articles

On the Passing Away of Emeritus Professor Adelola Adeloye  FAS

It s with heavy and sorrowful heart that I announce the death of that internationally renowned neurosurgeon and medical historian, Emeritus Professor Adelola Adeloye  FAS. The sad event took place at 4:10pm April 7, 2021. Further information on the death will be released by the family. May his brilliant soul rest in perfect peace.

 *The following is culled from Homecoming 2017 Compendium

Professor Adelola Adeloye :A Global Genius From Agidimo Hills         By Professor Adesuyi A Leslie Ajayi            (1969/73 set.  Mason House)
It gives me an unequalled sense of pride and pleasure, as well as a sense of occasion and history to contribute to posterity the story, life and intellectual works of  Professor Adelola Adeloye, a most distinguished alumnus and a global ambassador of Christ’s School, Ado-Ekiti.  Professor Adeloye’s reputation preceded him by at least a full decade, before I made my first sighting of the legendary scholar.  My father, Chief Alex Olu Ajayi, was brought from Igbobi college (his alma mater) by Canon L D Mason, following Mason’s transition  from Igbobi College Lagos to Christ School in 1948/49. 
My father taught the classes in which future Professor Adeloye and Professor BO Osuntokun  were his students . 
My father regaled me with stories of the brilliance of the duo, which unbeknown to him and others affected my own future career choice. This gave me an uncommon insight into the earliest beginnings of Professor Adelola Adeloye and thus his luminous personal and academic trajectory to date.
The life and works of Professor Adeloye are inspirational, and is a paragon of excellence and patriotism to which the young and up and coming generation need be exposed to , as an exemplary model.  Adelola Adeloye was born on July 18, 1935 at Ilesha Osun State, but with paters familiars from Ikole-Ekiti in Ekiti State. His father was a Village Genius ( See Village Genius by –AA Adeloye). Young Adelola was an intellectual prodigy, and was so academically dominant over his peers, that the one prize he did not win in his Christ’s School days, was not awarded. The High Master of Christ school justified this to the subject teacher saying “ you do not upset a genius”. 
Adelola Adeloye went on to win virtually all the available school prizes and passed out with a grade 1 Division in his Cambridge School Certificate Examinations in 1952, at the age of 17 years. He was admitted to study Medicine at the University College Hospital-University of London (UC Ibadan). At Ibadan he also had a very distinguished academic career, being a University (College) Scholar; for the best students with First class level performance, a Government Scholar, and Winner of the University Prize in Chemical Pathology. He graduated MBBS (London) in 1960.
The newly minted Dr Adelola Adeloye later proceeded to the United Kingdom for postgraduate training, where again he demonstrated his extraordinary scholastic abilities. 
In a spectacular feat, Dr Adeloye passed both the examinations to the membership of the Royal College of Physicians, as well as the Fellowship examinations of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. This makes him one of the very few medical doctors to be certified both as an internist and as a Surgeon !
Dr Adeloye later subspecialized in Neurosurgery and especially Neurotrauma both at the John Radcliffe Infirmary at Oxford University and at the National Neurological Hospital at Queens Square, London. He qualified as a Brain Surgeon by completion of his training and full certification in the novel and emerging technical field of Neurosurgery in 1966.
He returned to  Nigeria in 1967 and worked, as the second Nigerian Brain Surgeon after Professor E Latunde Odeku of blessed memory. This timing and return was most auspicious for Nigeria, as it was the beginning of the hostilities and civil war induced severe head trauma to military and civilian patients.
Dr Adeloye and Professor Odeku worked hand – in-glove and seamlessly to save many suffering from tangential missile head injuries on both sides of this war, and the cognitive skills and manual dexterity of the pioneering brain surgical team in Nigeria was tested by fire !. 
Professor Odeku and Dr Adeloye went on to generate the earliest neurological surgical-pathological findings, practices and documented variations that for the basis of the current national and international surgical anatomic knowledge of the brains of black Africans, from Ibadan from 1967-74. Professor Adeloye attained a full Professorship of Neurological Surgery at UCH  Ibadan in 1972, five years after a postdoctoral dissertation on Tangential Missile Injuries submitted for a Master of Surgery (Ch.M) , a rare academic qualification , from the University of London.
Following the premature infirmity and transition of Professor E Latunde Odeku in 1974, the mantle of Brain Surgery in Nigeria and black Africa fell squarely on the shoulders of Professor Adelola Adeloye. 
Professor Adeloye most appropriately eulogized the pioneer and leader , Prof Odeku in a his book, An African Neurosurgeon. In the course of Professor Adeloye’s illustrious academic and professional career , he published more than 150 peer reviewed journal articles and 200 or more scientific conference presentations and abstracts internationally and nationally, authored several books , making him one of the most prolific researchers and highly cited authors in any field in Nigeria. 
His work contributed to the global neurosurgical knowledge, and the combined work of Odeku, Adeloye and others put Nigeria on the academic world map of neurosurgery.
Professor Adeloye’s  research contributions range from pediatric and congenital brain disorders . He was the first to describe the surgical presentation and management of congenital subgalaeal cysts in the anterior fontanel of children and neonates with Odeku in 1971. 
This work caused others to search for and discover the disease which was thought to be restricted to black Africans, in other races,  giving new borns ‘bumps and lumps” on their heads.  
In 1978, the disease was eponymously named the “Adeloye-Odeku disease” in recognition of the pioneering work and surgical treatment of the workers. 
Brain Trauma following missile injury to the head is another major highlight of Adeloyes research. In another classical work, Adeloye and Odeku described  “A syndrome of characteristic of tangential   bullet wounds on the vertex of the skull “ . This work revealed the true neuro-anatomic correlation and understanding of vertex missile injuries, and shifted the paradigm away from longitudinal sinus syndrome. 
————————-“Inexplicably, however, this one of the most distinguished sons of Africa is yet to be  appropriately honored in his father land, Nigeria”_________________________
Adeloye and Olumide in 1976 described the neurosurgical trauma and management of criminally driving nails into the vertex of victims , where he demonstrated the role of sagittal sinus in the management of this problem which dates back to antiquity. Other contributions from the Adeloye and team include Adult and Children brain tumors and space occupying lesions of the brains of Africans, including the development of the Malawi Shunt by Prof Adeloye for treating Hydrocephalus (water head), when he was Professor of Neurological Surgery and Founding Dean at the University of Malawi Medical School.
Professor Adeloye has mentored others who are now leaders in Brain Surgery. These include Professor Olumide, Professor MT Shokunbi ( Spouse to our spectacularly brilliant Alumna Prof Mrs Wuraola Shokunbi –nee Olaofe).
Professor Adeloye has won many international accolades for his brilliance , research and creativity. In addition to Fellowships of the Colleges of Surgeons in London, Edinburgh, Nigeria, West Africa and the USA, he is the winner of the first ever African Journal of Trauma Honors, for excellence and Mentorship in 2001,  Honorary Presidency of the World Federation of Neurological Societies, President of the Pan African Association of Neurological Sciences, a Doctor of Science (Honoris Causa) , editorship and editorial board membership of a vast array of medical and neuroscience journals.
Inexplicably, however, this one of the most distinguished sons of Africa is yet to be proportionately honored in his father land, Nigeria. 
Since we replicate that which we celebrate, it is imperative to recognize this brilliance in academia, and  not just in politics or for moneyed peoples.  
In summary, Professor Adelola Adeloye is an eclectic scholar and a prolific and profound researcher , whose depths cannot be adequately appreciated in an essay of this limitation. He aptly illustrates Christ’s School, a portal of excellence , not in name only but indeed and in truth.I have only assayed to focus more on his major academic and professional contributions , which speaks loudly with eloquence. Over a span of 4 decades (1966-2005) of active scholarship, Adeloye has demonstrated a lifelong passion for the pursuit of Veritas.
Adelola Adeloye belongs to the crème dela crème of any and every organization he ever belonged to including the global body of Christ school alumni.  He is indeed a Homo sequendum – A man whose foot steps to follow !

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