A Tribute To George Oteri Omosuvie Diejomaoh (1924-2015)



DR. George Oteri Diejomaoh, the Ugo of Agbarha-Otor, was born on April 27, 1924 to Pa Omosuvie and Madam Oghenegueke Diejomaoh (both of blessed memories) at Edjeba Village in Agbarha-Otor Clan, in Ughelli North Local Council of Delta State. He died on Monday, June 15, 2015 about 10p.m. at his Ughelli home while sleeping. He was 91 years old.

He completed his primary education at Church Missionary Society (CMS) Central School, Okpare, near Ughelli in 1941 and attended the famous Dennis Memorial Grammar School (DMGS), Onitsha (1942-1945) where he passed the Senior Cambridge examination in Division One and with exemption from London Matriculation. He was at the Higher College, Yaba from 1946 to 1947 for Advanced Level Studies in Science subjects.

He was an alumnus of three Universities: Fourah Bay College, University of Durham, United Kingdom, where he obtained his B.Sc in Chemistry and Zoology and also his Postgraduate Diploma in Education; the University of Maryland, College Park, U.S., where he obtained the M.Ed in Science (Chemistry) Education; and the University of Ibadan, where he obtained his M.Sc in Inorganic Chemistry and Ph.D in Science (Chemistry) Education specialising in Methodology. The late Diejomaoh attended the three universities through in-service training during the course of his professional career.

He was a Community Scholar at Fourah Bay, Durham; a UNESCO Fellow at Maryland, and a Federal Government of Nigeria Scholar at Ibadan.

Diejomaoh was a man of varied experience and exposure, particularly as a science educator and teacher trainer, having taught for a period spanning over 40 years from secondary to college and from college to university levels, to wit: Urhobo Collegiate School, Warri, (1948-1949, Biology Master); Hussey College, Warri (1950-1955, Chemistry Master); Urhobo College, Effurun (1956-1959, Senior Biology Master; 1963-1966, Vice-Principal and Senior Science Master; 1969-1970, Principal); College of Education, Abraka (now defunct) (1971-1983, Head of Chemistry and 1979-1983, Dean of Pure Science); Bendel State University, Abraka Campus (Senior Lecturer in Chemistry and Chemical Education (1987-1988) and Director of Science Equipment Centre (1988-1990); Delta State University, Abraka on contract (Senior Lecturer in Chemistry Education) and Staff of the Post-Graduate School (1991-1993).

In his teaching/lecturing years, Diejomaoh co-authored and authored several textbooks at the secondary and university levels. His major publication titled ‘Teaching Practice Foundations For Education Students’ is the culmination and crystallisation of his varied experience as a science educator and teacher trainer, at the secondary school, college and university levels.

Diejomaoh’ s research interest was on Methodology in Science Education and on how chemicals and the chemical industry unite to serve society and the individual. He was at the NSF Summer Project in Interdisciplinary Approaches to Chemistry (IAC) held at the University of Maryland between June and August 1975.

Diejomaoh was a member of PHI DELTA KAPPA, a professional body for Fraternity in Education in the United States of America. He was also a member of the Rhetoric Society while an undergraduate at Fourah Bay College, Durham University. He was a member of the Science Teachers Association of Nigeria (STAN), National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) of the United States of America, and Chemical Society of Nigeria.

Diejomaoh received the traditional chieftaincy title of Olorogun (The Ugo of Agbarha-otor) from the Ovie of Agbarha-Otor on August 12, 1980 for meritorious service in education and in recognition of his several contributions toward the education of his people.

The legacy of the Diejomaoh family is education. This was pioneered by James Esiekpe Diejomaoh (of blessed memory), who was the first to receive formal education and worked as a court clerk from 1924. He was responsible for the initial education (primary and secondary) of his nephew, the late George Oteri Diejomaoh. The book ‘Ancestral Foundation of the Diejomaoh Family of Edjeba Village, Agbarha-Otor, First to Fourth Family Generation Tree: 1750 – 1989” authored by Dr. George Oteri Diejomaoh documents this fact.

Diejomaoh married Rosaline Modupe Diejomaoh (nee Ajakaiye), who died on October 13, 1983, in 1949. He was blessed with children.

Diejomaoh was a devout Christian of the Anglican Communion. He was baptised in 1942 and confirmed in 1944 both at Onitsha by Bishop Lasbrey, the late Anglican Bishop on the Niger. He enrolled into Bible School after retirement from Delta State University in 1993 and graduated to be a Lay Reader in the Anglican Communion. He became an Evangelist and initiated the establishment of St. Jude’s Anglican Church, at his hometown, Edjeba, Agbarha–Otor, Ughelli North Local Council.

Fondly called “ Omor D” (son of Diejomaoh) and /or “Papa D” by his students, his outstanding career, which spanned a period of about five decades, inspired his admirers to establish the George Oteri Diejomaoh Foundation for Applied and Scientific Research, Warri, Delta State, in 2000.

The Diejomaoh Family is proud of Dr. George Oteri Diejomaoh’s modest life achievements and we give glory and thanks to the Almighty God, Whose divine presence in his life has allowed us to celebrate his transition. Adieu, “Papa D”.

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