The Ondo State Government, Nigerian Union of Journalists and students of the Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba Akoko have reacted to the sudden demise of one of the most outstanding journalists in the state, Shola Ilesanmi, who passed away on Tuesday the 1st of March after an illness.
In a Press Release signed by the Commissioner for Information and Orientation of Ondo State, Donald Ojogo, the government of the state commiserated with the family of the deceased and the members of the NUJ for the great loss.
Shola Ilesanmi was described as an enterprising and resourceful young man, whose passion for journalism was immeasurable.
“His quest to seek news stories in most unusual sniff-moves was evidently legendary and undoubtedly impactful for the period he served in OSRC even as an award-winning journalist,” said Juliet Buna, a relative of the deceased.
The NUJ Chairman of the Ondo State chapter of the union, Adetona Aderoboye, and the State Secretary of the Association, Leke Adegbite, while reacting to the news, also characterised Shola as a caring, hardworking, brilliant, humble media man who will be missed by the people in Ondo State and beyond.
“There is no doubt this is another dark day and one of the saddest periods in the journalism industry in the Sunshine State and therefore registers our sincere condolences with his wife, children, his aged parents, and professional colleagues.
“The Union prays the Lord to grant his gentle soul in perfect rest and may God stop untimely deaths among media professionals in the state.”
The Students of Adekunle Ajasin University who lost an emeritus ambassador have also described his death as terrible news.
One of the students from the Department of Mass communication, Deborah Omoare, expressed her sadness over the news of Mr Ilesanmi’s sudden demise.
She portrayed Shola Ilesanmi as a great journalist who has consistently presented impactful stories over the years.
“His demise is a big loss in the world of journalism. We earthly loss him but I believe he is heavenly gained.”
She added that Shola was a brave and fearless writer who wrote a lot of stories with great empathy which, in turn, changed lives positively.
A 400 level student of Biochemistry, Bolawole Oluwole said:
“He was a trailblazer and a light to many, he was a coach whose impact lives or outages him, No doubt he lived a beautiful live worthy of emulation. His network of impact cuts across all walks of life.
“He was a humanitarian who held the message of discipline and humility side by side, his impact in the media would never be forgotten, his passion for the development of young people was never underestimated, he lived all his life believing in the ability of young people, training them and giving them hope for a better tomorrow.”
Olufemi Damilola, who is a graduate of AAUA and a practising journalist, said he found it very difficult to believe when he heard the news.
He emphasised that Shola is one of the individuals whose relevance will not be forgotten so fast.
“His role in building individuals who are into the media is quite commendable. He gives support, advice, and encouragement, in his little way.”
Philip Anjorin also asserted that Shola was a man of humble spirit, excellence, an impact-maker, a guide, an inspiration that cannot be sidelined.
“Shola Ilesanmi is a man whose stories have inspired a lot of people to keep pushing and forging ahead diligently.”
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