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Bowing to the popular demand of those who really love Ikale, the management of Ikale News, the foremost community newspaper in Ondo State, is bringing back the Ikale Awards & Biripo Music Fiesta.

The first edition of the Awards took at place 30 years ago at the Conference Centre, University of Lagos. Four subsequent editions of the colourful ceremony were held before I was discontinued in 2009 due to the suspension of Ikale News newspaper by the Publisher, for complete haul to fall in line with the exigency of modern journalism. Now that Ikale News is back – bigger, better, bolder and richer – we are also bringing back the Ikale Awards!

We were the best in terms of integrity!

Until we discontinued the Ikale Awards, no other award schemes in Ondo State came close in terms of integrity. Our integrity process was simply infallible. A Committee of eminent Ikales were appointed into an Award Screen Committee while Ikale News readers were asked to nominate their preferred choices of winners for each of the award categories. The screening committee’s decision was usually final. Winners were thereafter celebrated at an elaborate colourful awards ceremony with fun-fare and pulsating biripo music fiesta/dancing competition.

Chairman of the first Award Committee, Dr. Amos Akindade Akingba (an eminent Ikale academic, community leader and national pro-democracy activist) laid the foundation of the Awards Scheme on solid integrity process. Among others, his committee set rules such as:

  • Nominees of the awards are not allowed to donate in cash or kind in the organization of the awards.
  • Nominees of the awards are not required to support the award ceremony financially or in kind except in subsequent years after winning the award
  • Every award given must corroborate the title. For instance Recognition Award and Community Service Award are not the same. Anyone who wins Community Service Award must evidence of service to the community.
  • The publisher cannot overturn the decision of the Committee. He is however allowed to give special awards tagged “Publisher’s Award”
  • Members of the Screening Committee are not eligible to receive Awards while serving in the Committee
  • Awardees must reflect the “Ikale character” – spread geographically across Ikaleland
  • Where no one is found worthy in an award category, no award would be given for that category in the year, even though there may have been nominees by readers.

Colourful Presentation Ceremonies

Ikale Awards always came with pomp and pageantry. Ikale foods and drinks were served. Biripo, the intoxicating Ikale traditional music was feature at highest level. We have held past events in some of the best event venues around at the time: University of Lagos Conference Centre, Lagos Airport Hotel, Ikeja; and Owena Motel, Akure. In the 2009 edition, Baba Zeblon led the best of Ikale biripo superstars (including the likes of Chief Omotola Emaye, Chief Oneounreye Arowojolu, Prince Yomi Akinmuda, Chief Pius Metulukuro etc, who played together at a time of allegedly bitter rivalry amongst biripo musicians! Since then, they have remained together, promoting our most electrifying traditional music!

That is why after Ikale Awards, there has never been another award scheme of integrity in Ikaleland! For 2022, we are taking the Awards Ceremony back home!

We have been vindicated

We have been vindicated by the kind of men and women who have won Ikale Awards. Those that we honoured thirty and fifteen years ago are today celebrities. Our readers and screening committee members saw the future and decided to honour these awardees. And among the accomplished Ikales, we were glad we said “thank you” to them before they passed on to glory. Our past winners included the following:

The Legends: Chief Olu Akinfosile (the legendary politician gave a ‘thank you’ speech on behalf of other winners at the University of Lagos edition. These included:Music superstars Mama Comfort Omoge, Chief Zeblon Omoranmoro, Crosdale Juba (post humous), topmost military heroes, General Olu Bajowa and Vice Admiral Akin Aduwo; top educationist and local government administrator, Chief B.A. Akinmosin, highest political office holder at state level, Dr. Olusegun Agagu and legendary educationist who moulded lives of many Ikale youths, Chief E.O. Agagu. The second awards ceremony honoured the likes of biripo legend, Pa Akinbeyinje. Only Gen Bajowa and Admiral Aduwo are still alive in this category. It would have been too bad if Ikale did not say “thank you” to them in their lifetime.

The Upcoming: We honoured upcoming Ikales who showed signs of greatness under what we tagged “Distinguished Ikale Youth Award” such as Dr. Olu Akinde, Dr. Paul Akintelure, Dr. Seinde Fadeni, Barrister Jimoh Ibrahim when they were in the 20s and 30s and today they are being celebrated. In the last two editions, we called upon the likes of wave-making musician Demola Suzi for honours and today he is celebrated across Ondo State and the Nigerian music scene and showbiz personality philanthropist, Asiwaju Benson Akindeju, among others.

The Non-indigenes: In the last two awards ceremonies, we introduced a special award category for non-Ikales who have contributed immensely to our community’s development. We honoured in this category the late medical doctor, Dr. I. Hindam; as well as passionate principal and educationists, Mrs Adeiye, who along with her husband have been of immense blessing to the entire Ikale community.

Community Service Awardees: We asked our readers to look around their local communities for those impacting positively on the communities. This was our most respected Award Category. It was so competitive that so many people who had served their communities so well could not get awards, not to now mention those did nothing to help the community getting awards. It was purely service to the people award. The awarded those who build bridges and roads and other infrastructure in this category. The likes of Chief Willy Akinlude and Chief S.O. Akinnurun won awards in this category and both have been chairmen of Ikale Award Ceremonies.

How will the 2022 Award look like?

The 2022 Ikale Awards and Biripo Fiesta will be the very best. Just watch out for details here in your Number One community newspaper and on our website The Awards Committee will soon be constituted. We must fish out those who truly love Ikale and Ikale Community and say “thank you” to them so that they can continue to do what they love to do. We must discover promising youths and encourage them because in their hands lie the future of our community. Individuals and corporate insitutions who wish to partner with us are welcome. Please call our Special Projects Consultant, Omoba

We are the best in Ondo State! We therefore deserve the best!!

Watch out for Ikale Awards and Biripo Music Fiesta 2022



Bolu John Folayan, PhD