According to Anaedoonline.ng, there has been little information released about the academician’s death, Babatunde Ogunnaike, in Ijebu Igbo, Ogun State.
Ogunnaike, who would have been 66 on March 26, died at the age of 65, only weeks before his next birthday.
Ten Things You Should Know About The Deceased:
1- Babatunde Ogunnaike was one of five persons whose words and phrases were included into the national anthem. John A. Ilechukwu, Eme Etim Akpan, Sota Omoigui, and P.O. Aderibigbe were among the others.
2- The statistician earned his first degree in chemical engineering with First Class Honours from the University of Lagos in 1976.
3- In 1981, the deceased earned an M.Sc. in statistics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, as well as a PhD in chemical engineering from the same institution.
4- From 1981 to 1982, Ogunnaike worked as a research engineer with the Shell Development Corporation’s process control group in Houston, Texas – [Wikipedia].
5- He has 21 honors and fellowships to his name.
6- Worked for DuPont as a researcher and consulted for a number of firms, including Gore, PPG Industries, and Corning Inc.
7- In 2002, he joined the University of Delaware faculty, and in 2008, he was named to the William L. Friend Professorship of Chemical Engineering.
8- Beginning in July 2011, the deceased served as interim Dean of the University of Delaware’s College of Engineering before being elected Dean of the College of Engineering on July 1, 2013.
9- On October 1, 2018, Ogunnaike stepped down as Dean but remained on the faculty.
10- Ogunnaike fought cancer for years and died on February 20, 2022, but his death was just announced today (Tuesday), according to Anaedoonline.ng.
In a 2013 interview with The Nation, Ogunnaike stated that he was on his national service (NYSC) in 1977 (in Port Harcourt) when the notice for submissions to the new National Anthem was made.
“I recall reading some of the submissions because they were then routinely published,” the deceased had said during the interview.
Nothing his lines in the yet to be changed anthem, Ogunnaike said: “I believe that most of the second verse of the national anthem (if not the entire thing itself) was the second verse of the poem that I submitted.
He said further: “My first verse had a line similar to ‘The labours of our heroes past’ which ended up in the anthem; I am also sure that many of the other submissions had lines similar to this one.
“I think that my line emphasised “sacrifice” instead of the labour and I don’t think I used heroes. I do not have the original submission with me, alas; and that was some 36 years ago now, so it is difficult for me to recall precisely what was in the first verse.”
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