With deep sorrow in our hearts but with total submission to the Will of Almighty God, the Nigerian Institute of Translators and Interpreters (NITI), hereby announces the passing to Eternal Glory of Lion Anthony Adedoyin, Fellow of NITI and former General Secretary of the Nigerian Association of Translators and Interpreters (NATI).
Tributes from friends and colleagues
Once again, the cold hands of a word we hate to pronounce again has grasped an illustrious son of our great country, an icon of our noble profession and the LIONS Club, Mr Anthony Olusegun ADEDOYIN, whom everybody, old and young, simply knew asTony. He left us on Wednesday 4th November, 2020. After the loss in the recent past of the Senegalese, Momar Khary DIAGNE, the Burkinabe Herve SONGRE, both active members of AIIC (International Association of Conference Interpreters), and Ambassador Wisdom Baiye, who served at least six Heads of State/Presidents, it is now the case of Tony, a long- time General Secretary of NATI (Nigerian Association of Translators and Interpreters), the precursor of NITI ( Nigerian Institute of Translators and Interpreters), who took over from Abdullahi Kura, Translator/Interpreter in the Niger State House of Assembly, Minna.
Tony was a foundation member of NATI, founded in i978, shortly after Nigeria’s hosting of the tmonumental FESTAC 77 ( 2nd World Festival of Black and African Arts and Culture), where he was one of the high level translators and interpreters who worked as in-house staff of the Festival’s International Secretariat Department of Documentation, of which I was Director. He worked alongside the then Dr Amechi Ihenacho, and Dr Iwara ( both of UI), Mr Ikhoive, Akinlami, Mrs Iwuji, Mrs Elizabeth Abangwu, Mrs Sifo, Oladipo Johnson, Nina Okagbue, Oyinda Daramola, Yinka Edu,two Cameroonians: Bembatoum and Otou Ngouini, the Togolese Gertrude Mensah and Mr Anthony, as well as two ladies seconded from the Benin Ministry of Foreign Affairs, among others. The in-house translators also included two other Beninoises based in Nigeria: Irene d’ Almeida and Olga Simpson ( co-translators of Achebe’s ‘Arrow of God’). All of them it was who ensured the successful translation of the highly intellectual and technical papers presented by mainly black and African at the FESTAC Colloquium, ‘Black Civilization and Education’.
Other interpreters from Nigeria and other parts of Africa and other continents, recruited specifically for the one-month Colloquium, joined hands with Tony Adedoyin and other permanent staff to cover the Colloquium. They included Muyiwa Phillips, the Consultant for FESTAC interpretation, Lizzy Obileye, Malick Sy and Marie- Aida Diop (Senegalese), Komlan Ahli Bruce and Roch Andoch Bonin (Togolese), Nathalie Engmann (Ghanaian).
When he eventually became a lecturer and later director at the Nigeria Hotels Training School, Ikoyi, he regularly took charge of the expenses incurred by the Association, just like at his office in Surulere after his time at the Nigeria Hotels.
Tony’s achievement of great heights, untold generosity and total commitment were not limited to his translation milieu. Over the years, and until recently, he occupied all top posts and assignments in his Yaba LIONS Club where many impactful projects, all revenue-intensive, for the needy, the sick and the underprivileged bore his input and imprimatur. He naturally rose to become in 1996/1997 the Governor of District 404 (then the whole of Nigeria) of the International LIONS Club, the ideal locus for philanthropy of the type his legendary generosity required for optimal performance.
The Nigerian Institute of Translators and Interpreters (NITI) has lost an eminent member and the LIONS Club an iconic leader.
May his soul rest in in peace and may the Creator of Heaven and Earth grant his family the fortitude to bear the loss.
Ekundayo Simpson NITI, WAITI, AIIC
May his gentle soul rest in peace. Condolences to his family and to all NITI members.
Issa Illiassou ECOWAS Court of Justice
What a great loss, may his soul rest in perfect peace and may God Almighty comfort his family and all NITI members.
May his soul rest with the Lord
I wish him joyful activities in the beyond. He fared well on earth. Adios.
May his gentle soul rest in peace and may the Almighty God comfort and protect his family and professional colleagues in NITI, WAITI and AIIC left behind.
he leading light of the pioneers in every human endeavour always project onto the path of the oncoming generations, the way to go, long after they are gone. I may not have known the great man who has just left us, but the glowing testimony I have just read on him from no less a personality as Prof. Ekundayo Simpson, himself a leading light in the field of French Language and Translation in Nigeria, totally convinces me that in the course of our "brief" existence here on earth, we need to put in the best effort we can where GOD Almighty chose to place us, long before we were born. This, we can all do for NITI and WAITI, at least for the sake of leaving behind an enduring legacy for the generations to come. Dear Mr. Tony, NITI, which was given birth to as a frail little baby, midwifed by you, Prof. Simpson and some notable others, has grown and and matured into NITI and WAITI, and one of the foot foot soldiers of both entities, Emmanuel Kofi Nkansah, is saying "Merci infiniment pour tous vos sacrifices de pionnier, qui continuent toujours de porter de beaux fruits aujourd'hui dans votre pays natal".
Emmanuel Kofi Nkansah President, NITI (Abuja); Member, WAITI.
My condolences to his family as well as all NITI members. May God grant his family the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.
What a loss! May his soul rest in peace
My good, gentile, forthright friend and brother, Tony, has finally gone the way of all flesh! My sincere heartfelt condolences to his family, NITI and all of us! We take solace in the resurrection by God's grace! Amen!
Prince Eviano Achakobe.
What a great loss! R.I.P my brother. Ezekiel Ndukwe
He never looked anything else but a man full of strength with a strong desire to get things moving. Difficult, even with this confirmation, to imagine him otherwise. Condolences to the tribe of translators and interpreters.
Prof. Tundonu AMOSU
It's indeed a pity. Uncle Tony has gone to rest with his maker. A very kind, fun-loving, gentle and honourable man you were. May God accept your soul in paradise. Amen.
Ambassador Wisdom O. Baiye 10th August 1945 - 24th June 2020
With deep sorrow in our hearts but with total submission to the Will of Almighty God, the Nigerian Institute of Translators and Interpreters (NITI), hereby announces the passing to eternal glory of His Excellency, Ambassador Wisdom Baiye, Fellow of NITI, Linguistic Diplomat and Presidential Interpreter par excellence.
Tributes from friends and colleagues
Ambassador Wisdom Baiye, a year my junior at Kings College, Lagos, had the unassailable record of having worked at close range with, at least, six Nigerian heads of state and/or Presidents as translator and interpreter, a feat which I know no other Nigerian to have achieved. What is more significant is that he even had the opportunity of serving some of them more than once.
When the Burundi Peace Accord, signed in Arusha, Tanzania in 2,000, was witnessed by the then American President, Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela of South Africa and our own Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, among other prominent world leaders, and I had the opportunity to prostrate and greet our illustrious Nigerian leader, the diminutive Baiye was in their midst doing what he knew best, and that was not the first dispensation in which he would do so for Obasanjo. His achievements as a worthy representative of our noble profession was publicly recognized when, a decade ago, he was one of those whom, as individuals or institutions who had contributed to the development of our profession in Nigeria, the Nigerian Institute of Translators and Interpreters (NITI) honoured with the plaque of Excellence in Translation and Interpretation.
On the lighter side, some have adduced his success as interpreter in the arcane corridors of power and diplomacy, especially to his diminutive stature, where he stood no chance, ran no risk, of towering above any of his principals, heads of state and presidents, ministers, envoys, plenipotentiaries, especially when what was required was elbow interpretation, which the French and Francophones call chuchotee, whispering. When the interpreter necessarily has to stoop between two eminent personalities to do his thing, the shorter in height, the easier, the better, and so our late colleague excelled, was at home, close to the centre of gravity. He was sure of his art, his metier, having been trained in Paris in a way not many of his professional colleagues were, but akin to that of budding accountants, who were ‘articled’ by being necessarily attached to professional agencies, including those of the masters of the trade, the practice, where they learned the ropes, on the job, on top of anything they might have learnt like the theory of the course room. On one occasion in the late seventies our friend was in the simultaneous interpretation booth in the final minutes of a conference held in Lagos, on insurance, a technical field, and a delegate averred that the message had not been well rendered into the other language. But Baiye insisted that it had been. A repeat performance was ordered, the speaker repeated his ‘intervention’, our colleague did exactly what he had earlier done, and the meeting agreed with him.
May his gentle soul rest in peace. After the sad news of the loss of our close Senegalese colleague and friend, Momar Khary Diagne and then that of the master of humour, the Burkinabe Herve Songre, this is one other departure too many. May their souls Rest in Peace. Adieu, Wisom Baiye.
Prof. Ekundayo Simpson
Wow ~ this is very sad news. But Dayo, you have said it all and very brilliantly too. Thank you for this worthy and deserved tribute which spoke for many of us. May Wisdom's kind and gentle soul Rest In Peace with the Lord. Amen.
Nwadinafor 'Adia Chinyelu de Souza (Mrs)
RIP Prof. Wisdom Baiye. Sorry for the great loss.
Ibrahim Gali Yakasai
Oga Wisdom was our senior and then my teacher. A study in humility. God grant him total rest.