By James Sowole
Nobel laureate Professor Wole Soyinka revealed yesterday that solving math problems had saved him from insanity during his 27 months in jail.
Soyinka, however, said he didn’t like math as a subject when he was in high school, the subject actually became his saving grace when he was incarcerated for over two years by a military junta.
The literary icon made this revelation when he welcomed the university laureates, who have made Ogun State proud in various university competitions, to his residence in Kemta, Idi Aba in Abeokuta, the capital of the Ogun State.
Soyinka, while addressing the laureates, advised them not to prioritize any subject above the others.
On April 22, 2021, Ogun State Governor Dapo Abiodun inundated university laureates and teachers with cash, homes and laptops in a ceremony held at Obas complex, Oke Mosan, Abeokuta.
Soyinka noted that the efforts of the current state administration in education are evident in the emergence of university laureates who have shown great excellence and achievements.
He further encouraged the laureates to always have a holistic sense of the integration and interaction of subjects, which he said would help them to excel in all walks of life.
Speaking at the event, Abiodun, while highlighting some of his administration’s achievements in the education sector, pledged to continue to support and defend the legacy of the Founding Fathers who strived to make Ogun State a citadel of education.
The governor, who was represented by the secretary of the state government, Mr. Tokunbo Talabi, urged the winners to give their best and pledged that the state would continue to create an environment conducive to learner excellence.
“We are indeed proud of all our academic laureates who have distinguished themselves in various competitions. And as a state, we promise to continue to put in place the necessary arrangements that will continue to support the teaching and learning activities that will produce more university giants, ”the governor said.
In his welcome speech, Education, Science and Technology Commissioner Prof. Abayomi Arigbabu urged students to draw inspiration from the Nobel Prize winner by not dwelling on achieving greatness in whatever they do.
Some of the winners received checks ranging from N5 million to N50,000, laptops and other gifts.