Information about me
Born as Charles Oladipo Adeyeye Akinde, in Idanre, Ondo State of Nigeria on September 23, 1940. My father was a farmer and my mother a petty trader; although it might be more accurate to say that she was a housewife, as most women in Nigeria of those days combined both vocations.
Compiling a genealogy for a Nigerian family is complicated, as there are usually a lack of records, but in the following I will tell a little bit of what I know of the family called Akinde, from Idanre.
The Family Akinde
The family Akinde of Idanre descends from a man whose first name was Akinde, my great-grandfather. This Akinde was the High Chief Osore of Idanre. He inherited this title from his father, who was also the High Chief Osore (Alarijeje). Alarijeje means the owner of Eri Ijeje, a small stream which flows through the back of his compound at Oke Idanre (Old Idanre). The first name of Akinde’s father is not know to me.
The first High Chief Osore Akinde (I) was followed by a son, also known as the High Chief Osore Akinde (II), my grandfather. The date of his birth is not known, but he died in 1937 at Oke Idanre. My grandfather’s mother was a princess, the daughter of the 20th Owa of Idanre Oba Towurojoye Arubiefin the 1st. Together, they had a son, my father Eniola Akinde.
My father eventually succeeded my grandfather as High Chief Osore, and married the daughter of Chief Akinnagbe. The latter died young after having two female children; Bamwa, and my mother, Deborah Olaimodun Akinde. My mother’s mother was Orukootan (meaning name is finished because she was believed to be an abiku child). My mother was her only child (Bamwa being a child by another wife of Chief Akinnagbe). My mother’s mother similarly had only the one daughter. My mother herself had many children, although many died young due to lack of medical and health facilities. Four children survived to adulthood; two sons and two daughters. These children were:
- Francis Olatujoye Akinde
- Eunice Usiola Akinnola (nee Akinde)
- Charles Oladipo Akinde (me)
- Mabel Omoyiwola Oladapo (nee Akinde)
My Early Years
There were no kindergardens in Nigeria at the time, so like any other African child, I was brought up in the family among my many siblings. I started elementary school early at the age of four (the usual school age during the Colonial era was six years), on the 1st of January 1945 at the Saint Paul’s Anglican School, Idale Odode Idanre. In those days, children did not always get to finish school, but after some interruptions in my education, I finally finished my primary education in 1955. And that was when the adventure would finally start.
(To be continued)