The magical 90th Birthday ceremony that welcomes Lady Christine Doja Otedola, the matriarch of the Otedola family into the nonagenarian elite on Sunday, April 3, 2020, decorated the megacity of Epe, Lagos in brilliant hues and tinctures as elegance pranced with glamour.
The St. Peters Catholic church, Odoragunshin, Epe Lagos had an amazing precision and order which pervaded a prompt ceremony.
LADY DOJA OTEDOLA
Lady Doja––the teacher, nutritionist, philanthropist, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, dubbed ‘Madam Efficiency’ in her younger days––is immensely grateful to the Almighty for this grace and benevolence. For this charming and winsome life, with family and friends and well-wishers cheering her on.
This beautiful Sunday morning, the sleepy town of Odoragunshin in Epe Lagos came alive. The environs were serene, with a lot of people around to celebrate with the philanthropist par excellence.
On the grounds of St. Peters Catholic Church, policemen, DSS, LASTMA officials, and FRSC, among other security agents were on the prowl. With some men in mufti, vehicles were directed to the designated car park where orderliness prevailed.
SOCIETY REPORTERS was on the ground and here are the happenstances of the glorious occasion:
THE PROCESSIONAL HYMN
The song that ushered in the celebrant was titled, From Sacristy to Grotto. This was at exactly 10:15 am and it went on until there was a brief stop since the door to the church to be dedicated remained closed. The choir sang a couple of hymns beginning from the Sacristy as the Archbishop processes out of the sacristy.
Femi Otedola strolled in.
The Billionaire, as he is fondly called, exchanged pleasantries with some of his guests and family members before proceeding to the commencement of the Mass for the day.
THE OFFICIATING MINISTERS
Chief celebrant Metropolitan Archbishop of Lagos, His Grace (Dr.) Alfred Adewale Martins, pronounced the procession of the mass, he was assisted by Parish Priest Rev. Fr. Marcus Famosaya, Priest in Residence, Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Ogundele, and others.
BUSY DAY FOR TRAFFIC OFFICIALS
Traffic officials operating on the Island axis will definitely not forget Sunday, April 3, 2022, in a hurry. It was one of their busiest. Though not officially contracted for the day, the traffic that began the birthday ceremony created was unimaginable. The road leading to the reception venue was temporarily shut due to the presence of top-of-the-range automobiles coming into the area every now and then.
THE EARLY BIRDS
The early birds at the church service were the executive governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo Olu, and his amiable wife, Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, also sighted beside him while they wait for the service to begin was Gov. Kayode Fayemi, while the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi later joined them at the entrance of the church before the arrival of Femi Otedola to usher them into the beautifully decorated hall which had names of guests on each chair.
FEMI FEDRO REJOINS HIGH SOCIETY
Mr. Femi Pedro, former deputy governor of Lagos state, is back on the social scene, after a long layoff due to a sprained leg.
The fashionable politician came out of his shell for the birthday celebration and was even among the early callers.
BETWEEN SANWO-OLU AND FAYEMI
There is no doubt; there exists a strong bond between these two men of means. It may even be because the two are state governors in the southwest. While Sanwo Olu is the governor of Lagos State, Kayode Fayemi governs Ekiti State. The two came to the event together, sat together, chatted all through, and left at about the same time.
HEAVY SECURITY AT THE CHURCH
A lorry load of K-Square Security personnel was stationed at the church premises while the procession lasted. The men in black, looking stern and fearful, kept street urchins at bay, including all the uninvited guests.
THE GRAND ARRIVAL OF YEMI OSINBAJO
The vice president of the federal republic of Nigeria, Professor Yemi Osinbajo tested his popularity at the event and there is no doubt many still admire the Professor whose intention to run for the position of the president of the federal republic is yet unknown. The black Lexus sports car that brought him to the church hardly pulled up before the shouts of PYO rented the air.
In fact, it took the intervention of some security personnel to ward-off urchins who wouldn’t let the man be.
SEYI TINUBU CAUSES STIR
Son of the political Jagaban and the leader of the ruling party, Senator Bola Hammed Tinubu, Seyi was there to probably cause a steer and register his presence at the event. Since his dad could not make the event. While the church service was ongoing Seyi Tinubu was sighted outside with a mammoth crowd of urchins hailing him and trying to get something from him while the attention of many guests who couldn’t make it into the church hall looked on and this almost caused distraction during the church service.
EXOTIC AUTOMOBILES ON PARADE
Expensive wonder-on-wheels littered the entire Odoragunshin town and environs. The Governor of Lagos came in a black Toyota sport, allegedly described as a bulletproof car. The guests rode in a couple of exotics cars ranging from Lexus, MBW, G-Wagon, and Bentley among many others. There was also a black Range Rover sport and a white Lamborghini in their convoy.
TEMI OTEDOLA CAME WITH HER LOVER
One of the daughters of Femi Otedola, Temi Otedola, was not missing in action at the ceremony. But she made it up with her appearance at the event with her lover, Mr. Eazy.
NO INVITE, NO ENTRY
That was the bold inscription placed at the entrance of the venue of the reception. Black uniformed K-Square security personnel did not give anything to chance. Those without the IV were turned back. But that notwithstanding some still smuggled themselves in.
PARADISE ON EARTH
That phrase aptly describes the ambiance of the reception decoration at the Odoragunshin venue. The two marquees put to use could accommodate over 2,000 guests at once. Lavishly decorated by Funke Bucknor’s Saphire Events as many gawked at their splendor.
There was a section for cocktails; there was also another session for the VIPs and another for the lesser mortals.
LONESOME MO ABUDU
The CEO of Ebony Life TV, and entrepreneur MO Abudu was at the event, dressed in a knee-length ball gown. The beautiful babe sat all alone, looking tired and worried, until she later became very restless when some VVIP guests started coming into the hall and she forced herself to exchange pleasantry with almost everyone including the Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun among others.
GLOWING IN A BETTER LIFE
A giant balloon backdrop welcomed all guests to the reception with a lovely picture of the Nonagenarian Lady Doja Otedola on it and an inscription “Celebration of A Good Life.”
DJ CUPPY’S PERFORMANCE
DJ Cuppy one of Femi Otedola’s favorite daughters was at the reception to give a special rendition to her grandma. Her performance was one of the high points of the event as she got the guests cheering her up while she does what she knows how to do best.
DANCING TIME FOR THE CELEBRANT
The celebrant Lady Doja Otedola was ushered to the dancing floor by her billionaire son, Femi Otedola, as they both had a good time dancing to the beats of one of her sons Michael Otedola , after which Dj Cuppy took over the stage with her special rendition of GELATO. Even at 90, the celebrant did not disappoint her guests as she still made some good moves to the beats while her son Femi Otedola also did justice to the beats.
THE KING SUNNY ADE PERFORMANCE
Many had earlier been wondering who will be performing at the epoch-making event, but it was not surprising when the Event anchor Dare Art Alade announced the taking over of the band stand by KSA himself, and his presence gave the event the real touch of Society gathering that it was. Guests danced and danced while money rained till the late hours of the night.
Bashorun Dele Momodu
Femi Pedro (Former Lagos Deputy Governor)
Mr. Tony Elumelu
Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi
Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu and Wife
Vice President Of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo.
Governor. Kayode Fayemi
Adejoke Orelope Adefulire
Aliko Dangote (Chairman Dangote Group)
Godwin Emefiele (CBN Governor.)
Godwin Obaseki (Edo State Governor.)
Former Senate President Bukola Saraki
Former President of Nigeria Chief Olusegun Obasanjo
Oba Saheed Elegushi
Akeem Muri Okunola
Ambassador Ibrahim Gambari
Mr. Uwem White
Mr. Yinka Shonekan
Muktar Shehu Shagari
Ogun State Governor. Prince Dapo Abiodun
Otunba Niyi Adebayo
Mr. Peter Obi
Former Governor Of Ogun State, Segun Osoba
Dr. Adeshina, AFDB President.
Mrs. Bola Shagaya
Dare Art Alade.
Governor Of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai
Prince Segun Oniru
Prince Terry Waya
Mustapha Chike Obi (Fidelity Bank Chairman)
Abike Dabiri Erewa
Chief Bisi Olatilo
By: Sunday Adebayo