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Dele Momodu.

As a society reporter, I have known Dele Momodu, the publisher of Ovation Magazine, for close to thirty years. I knew him when he used to write for the African Concord, I followed his move to the Weekend Concord and how he spearheaded the Shinamania movement that brought Juju Sir Shina Peters to national prominence.

I knew when he moved as Editor to Classique magazine with MEE and his buddy Richard Mofe Damijo.

I also followed him when he left Classique magazine and started hanging out with them Kunle Bakare, Femi Akintunde Johnson and Mayor Akinpelu at  the Wemabod Estate, ikeja, office of Fame Magazine. I also knew when he used to reside in the ground floor apartment of a building somewhere off Medical Road, Ikeja.

I have followed his progress from  when he ran Ovation Magazine out of a suite at the Lagos Travel Inn, Toyin Street, Ikeja and later moving into another set of suites at the Excellence Hotel, Ogba, Lagos. All this time pursuing his dream and moving his ball as the say towards goal. His life has not been without its ups and downs. Rolling with the movers and shakers, and dining with the kings and Princes and Presidents of this world. You name the person, Dele has a one on one with that person.

But through all this; his triumphs and successes and the challenges, I can beat my chest and say one thing; he has remained a loyal servant of truth, telling it to who ever cares to listen. He has broken conventions to follow his own path and damn the consequences knowing that money is not everything and a man can only die once.

In all this time too I have noticed, in spite of the private jet owning billionaire friends that have come into his life, and they are attracted to him, like bee to honey, he has remained loyal and faithful to his friends; he always has a ready smile, a warm handshake and a sincere hug, with a ' "how are you my brother", to follow.

Daily, he continues to live his dream without apologies to anybody. Perfecting his craft day by day.

As a story teller, I follow him judiciously on social media. And of late, I have realised he has become one of the most hated men in Nigeria. Why? For doing his job and for seeking to unearth the truth about the Tinubugate saga and bring pride back to our country. Nigerians do not seem to care about truth anymore. Truth now depends on where you stand. If you are in APC faithful, black can have  many shades and who is to question you. This is the new Nigeria.

Dele Momodu did not initiate the case in the United States. He did not pay the lawyers pursuing the matter on behalf of H.E Alhaji Atiku Abubakar or has he attended the court sessions in the United States.

All he continues to do daily at least since the CSU made available the documents concerning President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is to point out the inconsistencies and disprepancies in what was said before, what was admitted and what we know know. All he has further tried to do is to provide us free of charge information that will make us see the error or otherwise in our positions on the matter and have a change of heart and therefore stand and say no, this is not correct, let us say the truth and be damned. Instead, people have continued to pour all manner of insults on him using mean, debasing, wicked and very uncomplimentary words. He is one of the most hated men in Nigeria today. See some of them,

See the level of hate...

"Mr. Dele, Davido's boy, Rumour mongers let the poor breathe, seems your paying master have renewed your contact, because I know you left for UK after the election but you are back now to continue your work, let the crying continue till 2031, instead you to let find a solution to the current situation but you are here throwing tantrums, Atiku that wants to come and sell generator for us and sell off the little assets remaining 😂. ENIKURE SIR"

Another wrote,

"You and your principal are in a severe pain. The pain will last till 2031. As e dey pain you. E dey sweet us".

And yet another,

"These are indecent words.

I thought you once practice journalism.

If I use strong derogatory words against your here, you will block me".

This nko?

"This is madness gone beyond limits. Treating the office of the president with disdain.

You should caution yourself too".

"Continue to whip up unnecessary sentiments, so it good that people allow their medium for the denigration of our country?"

This is rather heavy, below the belt...

"This 2023 election has unraveled many! If you are not in opposition, today you will be teaching us ethics of journalism!".

See more...

"Dele, your paymaster Atiku has lost elections, he should go back to Dubai. These rubbish can't help you guys in 2027".

And yet another,

"Dele, the scavenger journalist. Where is shonekan today? Akinjide do more than this. Akinloye of blessed memory nko?"

There is more and yet more...

While a stay in my corner and feel sorry for him, like the fighter that he is, he has refused to give up.

Writing in The Boss Newspaper, under his widely read column, PENDULLUM, Titled,


he started,

Fellow Nigerians, once again, this is not the best of times in our dear beloved country, Nigeria. After we had thought, gladly and gleefully, that no government could be worse than the recent Buhari administration, we are now confronted by yet another monstrosity. In less than two months in power, Tinubu’s government started collapsing whatever positive legacy Buhari left behind. Yet, we would have assumed and expected a President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to be far better prepared and more visionary than Buhari and his lacklustre team was. Unfortunately, this hasn’t been the case. While I’m not about to give an overview of Tinubu’s wobbly stewardship so far, and so soon, I’m constrained to put my thoughts and unequivocal opinion on the ongoing Tinubugate on paper. I’m doing this in my personal capacity as a Nigerian citizen and as a true and truthful friend of Tinubu. I believe only a true friend can look you straight, eyeballs to eyeballs, in the face, and tell one of the world’s most powerful men, the Gospel truth.

I have no doubts in my mind that the majority of Tinubu’s so-called friends and ubiquitous hangers-on are pretentious hypocrites. Tinubu has also not helped himself by encouraging both royals and puppets alike to worship at his feet and turning him into a demi-god. I’m convinced that they serve him no useful purpose. I will establish this fact in a minute....

The Tinubugate did not begin yesterday. It started after Tinubu returned from exile and metamorphosed into the Governor of Lagos State in 1999 and instantly became the biggest beneficiary of our epic battles in exile during the NADECO days. In all honesty, we were all happy that he was amply compensated for his salutary efforts.

The Tinubugate did not begin yesterday. It started after Tinubu returned from exile and metamorphosed into the Governor of Lagos State in 1999 and instantly became the biggest beneficiary of our epic battles in exile during the NADECO days.

But unknown to us, trouble was brewing. We didn’t know how or what led the legal luminary, Chief Gani Fawehinmi, to exhume all manner of “false declarations” contained in the forms submitted for Tinubu’s gubernatorial bid. On October 11, 1999, just months after Tinubu contested and won his election, Chief Fawehinmi’s powerful interview was published on the cover of Newswatch magazine, with the screaming headline: WHY TINUBU MUST GO – Gani Fawehinmi. The fearless Lawyer also granted another interview on the cover of The Source magazine, with an even more acerbic headline: “TINUBU IS A CRIMINAL – Gani, and a rider below: Deserves 10 years in jail! On top of the same magazine was published a worrisome story: The Tinubu Story: THE SOURCE UNDER THREAT. This was the first tell-tale sign of the new and toxic Lagos State to come, a Lagos of one man, one permanent ruler, reminiscent of the Sicilian Mafia, which we privately rechristened the “Cosa Nostra” of Nigeria"... Absolutely fearless.

Every hour he is posting on his social media handles.. something fresh, giving the opposition madder...

While I might have had my little beef with him trashing my homeboy President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and supporting President Mohamadu Buhari which earned him a private audience with PMB in Aso Rock, Dele showed he is a man of rare courage when without waiting for any government patronage, he openly lambasted the Buhari regime for it's lapses.

That kind of man is worthy of my respect. And for that we all must cut him some slack.

Dele is following his path.May God help us all to live with the power of our convictions and say to hell with everything else. There may and will be a price to pay at some point, but nothing ever comes cheap that is worthwhile. You must be prepared to sacrifice.

There is a funny twist and end to all of this though,  one of Dele's neighbors in the highbrow apartment where he resides in Lagos, is one of the most ardent and vocal supporters of  President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, K1, the Fuji maestro.

What will happen when they meet in the elevator upon K1's return from his London playing tour soon? Will they hug and banter as usual or will it be, "Dele, O fumble Sha..."

That story will be told someday soon.


Al Humphrey Onyanabo, ( The Story Teller) writes from Lagos. He is passionate about NIGERIA.



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