Kunle Kalejaiye

By Saint-Olawale Jimoh
“As far as we can discern, the purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere beings” – C.J Cung ‘Colossus’ according to Oxford dictionary refers to ‘a
person or thing that is extremely important or large in size’. The emphasis under this context doesn’t have anything to do physical body frame or structure. It’s about the importance or worth of the individual. Walt Whitman captures it better when he says, ‘I am large, I contain multitude!’

All over the globe, history has given us many of suchpeople- Mandela, Ghandi, Mother Theresa, Martin Luther, Lincoln and a host of others including our own Obafemi Awolowo. They are not big because they have lots of money though some of them are financially
accomplished. Afterall, wealth is what they say is the fruit of labour. But they understand being rich doesn’t fill up one’s life. They are not big because they bully or have our commonwealth trapped in their custody. They belong to the class of people Max Weber describes as ‘Charismatic Figures’. They draw their strength from moral examples, intellectual power and courage. These are essential ingredients for selfless service and
leadership.
One foremost personality who has translated into a colossus by virtue of his tremendous capacity, goodwill and more importantly, his unquenchable thirst to leave anyone who crosses his path better than he met them is no other person than Otunba Kunle Kalejaiye SAN.

His recent victory at the Supreme Court is a pointer to the fact that he enjoys some uncommon favour from God. The Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee (LDPC) had on May 21, 2015 disbarred him under circumstances believed to be controversial and was
stripped of his Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) title.

Barely four years after, March 15, 2019 the Supreme Court overturned his disbarment and restored his wig and gown. To many, within Nigeria’s judicial landscapes, it’s still a mystery. I’m still not sure if we’ve ever had any case similar to this in history but I’m certain there’s always one person in every generation, blessed with exceptional favour and attributes such that even nature obeys his biddings.

A man of uncommon grace, rare breed, distinguished legal icon, friend of the cheated and deprived, an outstanding achiever, a role model, tireless giver and philanthropist per excellence. Considering his personality and all he represents, it’s expected that he
will mean different things to different people. But the one undisputable fact that remains unequivocally constant like a Northern Star that defines OTUNBA is a very essence that encapsulates humanity at its finest.

He’s blessed with three outstanding attributes that distinguish him from every successful Nigerian I know. One. He remains one of the most humble towering personalities I’ve ever come across. In spite of his successes and numerous achievements, he has remained himself, humble, respectful, no airs..

Few years ago, I began paying close attention to acertain Facebook User whose posts (on a Facebook page associated with own hometown) are way ahead of our time. His cerebral leverages are always a source of inspiration to me. Out of curiousity, I made my findings about the owner of the account and discovered he was same person masquerading under
such unknown name. His reason, I gathered was to enable people relate freely without reverence or fear.

He wanted to be appreciated, scolded or abused like ordinary Facebook user. Two. He is a tireless dreams’ supporter. His keen interest in developing the potentials in others is one of
the reasons he would continue to earn my respect. It is an usual gift from God, given to a few men for the benefit of all and this is the reason why many youths hover around him all the time.

Three. He’s a stupendous giver! A generous giver to whom service to humanity remains his heritage has with his God-given resources executed various philanthropic acts within and outside his community over the years. As it stands today, there’s no way you
would live in any town or village under Ijebu North East Local Government Area of Ogun State and its environs and say уσυ haven’t tasted his water. He sunk boreholes with a standby power generator sets in all nooks and cranies of the area.

This in addition to so many other gestures credited to him, like the monthly and yearly relief packages for the aged. Here’s a man whose private residence has been
likened to the Biblical Galilee where the needy thronged into and get comforted. In fact, as I write this, a friend hinted about those he’s quietly funding their educational expenses and loads of other commendable acts. History, therefore, beckons on him to continue to use his unique and uncommon gifts and wizardry to seek the best and the brightest for both his
community and state.
Few years ago, I authored a lengthy article published in
The Sun and National Life Newspapers respectively, where I captured in details, his giant strides in his immediate communities. In the piece, I concluded by recommending that he vies for an elective position in order to do more. Interestingly, I learn’t the then governor of Osun State, Olagunsoye Oyinlola saw the article first before anybody else. Thereafter, others began to call Otunba’s attention to it. Fact is, Otunba is the kind of person we need at the seat of governance. Plato, one of the greatest philosophers who ever lived, said ‘the price good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men!’

Unfortunately, he has repeatedly been quoted to have said he has no interest in politics. But if he decides to heed his people’s voice in future, a vote or support for him is a yes for a greater, better and quality representation at whatever level of government.

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