Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, yesterday joined former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo and other dignitaries in Lagos State to honour the matriarch of Otedola family and former first lady of Lagos State, Catherine Doja Otedola, as she celebrated her 90th birthday.
As a birthday present to her community, a new church was dedicated at her homeland, Odoragushin, Epe in Lagos State.
Osinbajo who was at the church dedication programme congratulated Mama Otedola and declared that she lived a remarkable life of service to others through philanthropy which has been imbibed by her children and grandchildren.
He said, “We praise the Lord God Almighty for the privilege and his grace by which Mama had fulfilled her vow to build a befitting edifice, the St Peter’s Catholic Church auditorium for the worship of our Lord. We pray for you as your days, so small your strength, wisdom and favour be with God in Jesus’ name. Amen”
The Archbishop of the Catholic church of Lagos, Most Revd Alfred Adewale Martins, said the multimillion naira new church auditorium which was filled with dignitaries was due to her selfless acumen and service to humanity.
He urged all to emulate mama’s sterling qualities.
The celebrant who clocked 90 years yesterday, said her decision to dedicate a church was a solemn pledge she made to God if He keeps her healthy and allows her to celebrate 90.
“I always do something for the church every year for my birthday and at a time, I heard a voice that told me I’d live to witness my 90th birthday which was why I vowed that if it happens, I will build a church for the Lord,” she said.
Also speaking at the event, the chairman of the occasion and former governor of Ogun State, Chief Segun Osoba, said he had known Lady Doja for years as a student of the University of Lagos.
“I have known mama for 37 years now at the University of Lagos where she worked. People have testified, whether you have the meal ticket or not mama will turn a blind eye and give you food and we had the best food in those days.
“One thing I want to thank God for is that with all the good work that Femi is doing all over the world and what your children are doing, mama you will see more better days in your life in Jesus Name,” he said.
Dignitaries at the ceremony included businessmen, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Tony Eumelu, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, Godwin Emefiele, president of African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr Akinwunmi Adeshina, Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and his wife, Dr Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki, Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi, Ogun State Governor Prince Dapo Biodun, former Ogun State governors Otunba Gbenga Daniel and Chief Segun Osoba and his wife, Aderinsola.
Others were the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeniyi Adegeye, former Delta State governor, Chief Onanefe Ibori, publisher of The Guardian, Maiden Ibru and businesswoman Bolaji Sagaya.