Dr. Stella Ameyo Adadevoh

Dr. Stella Ameyo
Dr. Stella Ameyo

Ancestral background

England’s foremost playwright and literary giant William Shakespeare once remarked: “Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.” In the person of Dr Stella Ameyo Adadevoh the above assertion found its complete expression. Dr Adadevoh (as we shall henceforth address her) was born in Lagos, Nigeria on 27 October 1956 into the noble family of Adadevoh. Her father’s name is Babatunde Kwaku Adadevoh from the Volta Region of Ghana. He happened to be a famous physician, distinguished scientist, lecturer, author, and former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lagos; while that of her mother is Deborah Regina McIntosh.

From her  paternal pedigree, she was the great grand-daughter of Herbert Samuel Macaulay, Nigeria’s foremost nationalist; and from her maternal pedigree, she was the grandniece of Nigeria’s first president Nnamdi Azikiwe and also  the great-great-granddaughter of Sara Forbes Bonetta and a great-great-great-granddaughter of Ajayi Crowther. Therefore, from her ancestral origins, she was born into greatness, by dint of resilience and hardwork she achieved greatness, while the conducive family miliu and educational backgrounds combined amicably to thrust greatness upon her.

Dr. Stella Ameyo Adedevoh


Dr Adadevoh sacrificed her life to save Africa’s most populous country, Nigeria, and on 4 August 2014, during the Ebola plague.



Our mother planet Earth has been blessed with great men and women who visited her and left an indelible impression. Of the women who left Mother Earth and shaped her in 2014 is the humanitarian and selfless personality Dr Stella Ameyo Adadevoh. This memoir of hers serves as a beckon of hope to so many men and women out there whose services to humanity’s home remain unsung, yet reverberate in keeping our collective existence intact, especially in devastating circumstances occasioned by both human and natural disasters.


Education, whether formal or informal, is a light bright enough to light up the path of those who embrace it; it is the only veritable instrument which purges man’s animality to preserve his humanity. In both senses of education, Dr Adadevoh embraced it to the core. Her greatness did not occur in a vacuum. She first received an excellent education and culture which propelled her into greatness and public recognition.

First, Dr Adadevoh went to preschool at the Mainland Preparatory Primary School in Yaba, Lagos (1961-1962). She spent two years in Boston, Massachusetts before moving back with her family to Lagos. She attended primary school at the Corona School, Yaba in Lagos, Nigeria (1964-1968), and later proceeded to the prestigious  Queen’s School, Ibadan (1969-1974) Nigeria where she obtained her secondary school education.

     Having completed her Secondary education with flying colours, Dr Adadevoh made the right step into the prestigious University of Lagos (Unilag) where she  graduated from the University of Lagos College of Medicine with a Bachelor of Medicine/Bachelor of Surgery. She served her one-year mandatory horsemanship at Lagos University Teaching Hospital in 1981. She spent her residency at Lagos University Teaching Hospital and obtained her West African College of Physicians and Surgeons credential in 1983. 

     After a successful tertiary education in Nigeria, Dr Adadevoh proceeded overseas to broaden her coast of knowledge and prepare herself for a greater impact on society. This took her to London to complete her fellowship in endocrinology at Hammersmith Hospital. She spent 21 years at the First Consultants Medical Center in Lagos, Nigeria. There, she served as the Lead Consultant Physician and Endocrinologist.

Her Career and Fame

The legendary Archimedes knew perhaps more than everyone else the role of foundational support in personal development and realization of potentials when remarked: ” Give me a lever and a fulrum and l will lift the world!” Having been given these lever and falcrum of education, Dr Adadevoh entered the society with energy and enthusiasm to transform it. This started when she successfully diagnosed the Liberian delegate to the UNESCO conference of 2014 Mr Patrick Sawyer with  the dreaded Western African Ebola virus despite not having seen it for the first time.

      Although she had never seen Ebola before, nevertheless, was able to identify and differentiate it from other maleria symptoms perhaps due to her diligence, perspicacity and dedication to duty. Satisfied that it was the dreaded Ebola virus which ravaged other Western African countries, she contacted the Federal Ministry of Health for adequate prevention and /or  containment despite pressures even from colleagues in the same medical profession. For example, when she was pressured by Liberian officials who wanted the patient to be discharged to attend a conference, she resisted the pressure and said: “for the greater public good” she would not release him.

By this exemplary selflessness and dedication to duty inspired by humanism, Dr Adadevoh was able, with the help of her team, to contain the fast-spreading Ebola virus from affecting Nigerians and other neighbouring countries. Without her spirit of dedication, excellence, diligence and unwavering humanitarian commitments, 2014 could have become a year of disaster just as the years 2019-2020 when such a pandemic got out of hands. In fact, it could have been so devasting  since Nigeria’s health system was not prepared for an outbreak at the time.

      Subsequently, all 20 Ebola cases in Nigeria were traced to a single path of transmission originating with the first (index) patient who took a flight from Monrovia, Liberia to Lagos. This is what differentiated the Ebola outbreak in Nigeria from the outbreaks in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, where the index patients were not initially diagnosed or contained. Then, the World Health Organization declared Nigeria Ebola-free on the 20th of October 2014.

Living after death: honours and awards

The heroine of 2014,  Dr Adadevoh sacrificed her life to save Africa’s most populous country, Nigeria, and on 4 August 2014, it was confirmed that she had tested positive for Ebola virus disease and was being treated. Adadevoh gave up the ghost in the afternoon of 19 August 2014 alongside three of hercolleagues. Her heroism prevented a major outbreak in the mostpopulous African country and served as the catalyst forsuccessful government action to contain the spread of whatwould have been a major outbreak in a country of more than 190million people.

       She was survived by her husband Afolabi and son Bankole among other relatives.

       Thereafter, her immortalization process commenced when the Dr. Ameyo Adadevoh Health Trust (DRASA), a non-profit health organization, was created in her honour. The film 93 Days is dedicated to Adadevoh and tells the story of the treatment of Sawyer by Adadevoh and other medical staff at First Consultant Medical Center. The film was directed by Steve Gukas. Also On27 October 2018, she was honoured with a Google Doodle posthumously in memory of her would-be 62 birthday.

In February 2020, a road was named after Dr Adadevoh inNigeria’s capital City, Abuja, The road “Ameyo Adadevo Way” is directly linked to Ahmadu Bello Way. Several other awards and ceremonies held in honour of the who woman shaped 2014 include but not limited to:

National and Community Service Award​5 October 2014,​Trinity House Church;

Honorary Doctorate Degree: Doctor of Letters, Honouris Causa​11 October 2014,​Baze University;

Nollywood Humanity Award​18 October 2014,​Nollywood Movies Awards;

Arise Award​25 October 2014,​Redeemed Christian Church of God; 

Posthumous Award​3 November 2014, Women in Management, Business Organizations and Public Service (WIMBIZ);

Exemplary Leadership Award​12 November 2014, ​Pathcare Laboratories;

Distinguished Service Award​15 November 2014,​Guild of Medical Directors FCT Abuja.


Jass Jegs’ story

soliders' stories

I have had experiences that tested my training, where combats and tactics led me out of what I will term a Warzone. Sharing this particular experience brings back blissful memories and I can only be proud that I and my Team were able to restore Peace.

Jass Jegs’ story

A Nigerian soldier who was stationed at Port Harcourt in the 2022 Elections, alongside his team played a key role in ensuring a Peaceful Election procedure.

solider jes jagss

My Field story

During one of the Elections in Port Harcourt, when we arrived the residents where jubilating. It was on the day of election was when we knew why they were happy seeing us coming into town.

The number of gunshots from Emuoha, Etchie, Omudioga, Eleme and co was maaad.

We arrived Ogoni to Kana and got to Gokana by 2pm and there was no Election going on. Just as we assured them to start voting without fear, dynamite answered within few minutes. Serious firing followed. We told everyone to lie flat to avoid stray bullets.

See boys with brand new GPMGs, tied their heads and all that.

Luckily there was one MRAP on ground to do the magic. 😁 That gun doesn’t segregate neither does it discriminate. 😁😁

The next day there was proper deployment and everyone voted without noise.

I pitied the youth corpers that were assigned for elections that very day, they saw mini war.


Obafemi Awolowo

tafawa balewa

Early Life

Abubakar Tafawa Balewa was born in December 1912 in December 1912 in the village of Tafawa Balewa, in modern-day Bauchi state. According to Tafawa Balewa’s family oral history, his paternal grandfather Isa was murdered in the presence of his family by his rival’s agents. As a result, Isa’s widow then took her infant son to Bauchi, where the Madawaki (Commander of the army or minister of defense) of Bauchi took her in. He was his father’s only child. Thus, the name of his birthplace was appended to Abubakar’s name (Abubakar Tafawa Balewa). Tafawa Balewa village takes its name from two corrupted Fulani words: “Tafari” (rock) and Baleri (black). This may have contributed to the “Black Rock” nickname he acquired in later life. Although it is widely (incorrectly) presumed that he was Hausa, Balewa’s father Yakubu Dan Zala was in fact of Bageri ethnicity, and his mother Fatima Inna was Fulani (Umar, 2011).


Obafemi Awolowo

Nigerian nationalists and statesmen who played a key role in Nigeria’s independence movement (1957-1960).

tafawa balewa

Childhood (primary school years)

Abubakar Tafawa Balewa was among the pioneer northerners to acquire western education. Initially he attended Qur’anic school and learnt the first chapter of the Qur’an by heart. For his Western education he attended Bauchi Provincial School.

Teenage (secondary school years)

He was known to be a shy, quiet and not outstanding student academically.

Youth (university years)

The young Abubakar later attended Katsina Teacher Training College (1928- 1933) and graduated with a Third-Class certificate. His best subject was unsurprisingly, English. He became a teacher and irritated by a friend’s remark that no Northerner had ever passed the exam for a Senior Teacher’s Certificate, Balewa duly sat the exam, and obtained the Certificate. Having achieved this feat, he became headmaster of the Bauchi Middle School. He reported that the first white woman he ever set eyes on was Dame Margery Perham (a renowned academic on African affairs) when she visited Nigeria on an investigation of native administration. In 1945 he and other Northerners.

who would later play key roles in the political landscape of Nigeria (including Aminu Kano) obtained a scholarship for further studies at the University of London’s Institute of Education (1945-1946), where he received a teacher’s certificate in history (Umar, 2011).

Career & Achievements​

When Abubakar Tafawa Balewa returned to Nigeria, he said he now saw the world with “new eyes”. The young Abubakar noted that he “returned to Nigeria with new eyes, because I had seen people who lived without fear, who obeyed the law as part of their nature, who knew individual liberty” (Umar, 2011). Consequently, he was made Native Authority Education Officer. Although Balewa was not politically overt, he founded an organization called the ‘Bauchi Discussion Circle’ in 1943, and was elected vice president of the Northern Teacher’s Association (the pioneer trade union in Northern Nigeria). 

On his return in 1946 he was elected to the House of Assembly of the Northern Region and in 1947 was one of its five representatives to the Central Legislative Council in Lagos. He was reelected to the assembly in 1951 despite the hostility of some conservative emirs of the generally Muslim north. From 1952 until his death, Balewa served in the federal government. He was minister of works and of transport in the middle 1950s, and then, as leader of the NPC in the House of Representatives, he was made the first prime minister of Nigeria in 1957. After the pre independence elections of 1959, he again became prime minister in a coalition government of the NPC and Nnamdi Azikiwe’s National Council of Nigeria and the Cameroons, and he continued to hold that position after Nigeria was officially granted independence in 1960. As prime minister of Nigeria, he had his powers circumscribed by the federal structure of the government, which reserved more authority for the regions. Balewa proved unable to mitigate the growing tensions of 1964–66, manifested by a partial boycott of the election in 1964, army unrest, and outbreaks of violence in the Western Region. He was killed in the first of two Nigerian army coups in 1966 (Britannica, n.d).

Balewa joined the government in the year 1952, as Minister of Works, and later served as Minister of Transport. In 1957, he was elected Chief Minister, forming a coalition government between the Northern People’s Congress (NPC) and the National Council of Nigeria and the Cameroons (NCNC), which was led by Nnamdi Azikiwe. He retained the post as prime minister when Nigeria gained independence in 1960, and was reelected in 1964. Between 1960 and 1963, he was also in charge of the foreign ministry. In the build up to Nigeria’s independence in 1960, a constitutional conference was convened in 1954 in London. Tafawa Balewa was the leader of the Nigerian delegation which comprised of other key stakeholders in the Nigerian project of whom were Obafemi Awolowo, Nnamdi Azikiwe, and Ahmadu Bello. The three personalities mentioned were regional premiers for Western region, Eastern region, and Northern region respectively. At the 1954 constitutional conference a regional political framework for the country was adopted with all regions accorded a considerable level of political freedom. Further meetings were held in the same regard in London in 1957 and 1958 to draft the constitution with Balewa playing critical role. The position of Balewa and his political contemporaries in pre-independence constitutional conferences also reflected party lines. Each represented a different political party, namely Action Group (West), the National Conference of Nigerian Citizens (East) and the Northern Peoples Congress (North). At the same time, these groups represented Nigeria’s diverse major ethnic groups, namely Hausa and Fulani (north), Yoruba (west), and Igbo (east).

In December 1959, elections were conducted for the Federal House of Representatives across present day Nigeria. The North which was NPC held grounds won 142 seats out the 312 available seats in the election. With the outcome of the elections there was no clear-cut majority for either of the three major political parties.

Thus was the genesis of regional politics in the Nigerian political landscape as regional premiers alongside other prominent political figures guided their regions tenaciously against political encroachment. The control of the federal government was effectively in the hands of the northern political elites of which Balewa was part. The north had the highest number of seats allocated. This gave them an edge over the other regions. Frederick Cooper remarks that “The East and West feared the North which was tightly controlled by an Islamic state” (2002, p.13).

Prime minister Abubakar Tafawa Balewa faced turbulent times while in office. His administration was constantly faced with regional factionalism which threatened his government. Notwithstanding, as Nigerian prime minister, he played crucial roles in the African continent’s post-1960s era. Balewa was highly instrumental in the formation of the Organization of African Unity and exploring avenues aimed at fostering cooperative relationship with Francophone countries. He played a key role in negotiations between Moise Tshombe and the Congolese authorities during the Congo Crisis of 1960 – 1964. During the heydays of apartheid in South Africa, Balewa led a vocal protest against the Sharpeville Massacre of 1960 and also entered into an alliance with Commonwealth ministers who wanted South Africa to leave the Commonwealth in 1961. He maintained cordial ties with the Western countries but maintained an intolerant stand on their policies that were inimical to Africa. For instance, he condemned French plans to use the Sahara as a nuclear test zone on 13 February, 1960. Balewa was instrumental to the convening of the Commonwealth meeting in Lagos in 1960 (British PATHE, n.d.). The essence of the conference was to discuss how to respond to the white supremacist government in Rhodesia’s unilateral declaration of independence.



Other Notable Accomplishments

In the year 1963, Balewa gave an eloquent speech at the Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) inaugural conference of the Organization of African Unity that held all present spellbound. Throughout his tenure as Prime Minister he maintained a thoroughly dignified comportment. He was regard by some his contemporaries as a “perhaps the perfect Victorian gentleman.” He received several awards from the British such as Commander of the British Empire (CBE) in 1955. Balewa was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in January 1960 and was awarded an honorary degree by the University of Sheffield in May 196

Family & Personal Life

Tafawa Balewa is survived by his four wives Jummai, Umma, Zainab and Laraba, and 19 children. Balewa married Jummai who hailed from present-day Sokoto state when she was a thirteen years old teenager. He equally had a posthumous daughter named Zainab who was born by Jummai two weeks after Balewa’s death. When he was assassinated in 1966, all his widows remarried. However, their subsequent marriages collapsed and they returned to the late Tafawa Balewa’s house in Bauchi to live together. His third wife Hajiya Zainab also known as Hajiya Umma, died earlier this year, 2023, at the age of 73. He had two sons in England prior to his demise, they were comforted and looked after by their headmaster Trafford Allen together with their guardian J.E.B. Hall. At this point also, their school fees at Epsom College were being paid by the military regime of General Yakubu Gowon. Meanwhile, his son at Keffi Government College did not know of his father’s demise until the school caterer broke the news to him. Lastly, Balewa’s children include Mukhtar, Sadiq, Hajia, Uwani, Umar, Ahmad, Haruna, Aminu, Hafsat, Amina, Zainab, Yalwa (widowed early and became an organizer of women’s education), Saude, Hajia Binta, Rabi (resisted early marriage in favour of study), Ali (died aged nine), Jhalil and Hajia Talle Aishatu (now deceased).

Feedback from other people about the subject​


Commenting on the political arrangement of 1959 in which Balewa played a key role, Umar Fahad writes:

Balewa was to form a coalition government with the Eastern NCNC (Igbo), becoming Nigeria’s first federal Prime Minister. Bello remained premier of Northern Nigeria. Awolowo was independent Nigeria’s first official leader of the opposition. Until Nigeria became a republic in 1963, a Governor-General—Nnamdi Azikiwe—continued to represent the British monarch. In 1963, Azikiwe became Nigeria’s first President (2011, p.6).

The assassination of Abubakar Tafawa Balewa in 1966 is considered one of the unfortunate events in the annals of Nigerian history. According to Adamu Yalwa Gabi in his article:

“His assassination by the enemies of progress, during a bloody coup d’etat on January 15,1966 in Lagos should be viewed as a capital offence and abomination for bringing an end, life of the Nigeria’s hero who had danced well according to his tune in building a roadmap to socio economic growth of his fatherland in all aspects of human endeavors” (2022, para. 4).

Adamu Yalwa Gabi writes about the Prime Minister Tafawa Balewa posthumously thus:

Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, the first and only Nigeria’s Prime Minister who hailed from Tafawa Balewa Local Government Area in Southern part of Bauchi State could be seen as the number one citizen, commandant or civilian general at the forefront of the battle without any sophisticated weapons at his disposal but honesty and the zeal at heart as the acumen he possessed in securing the country from the shackles of colonial rule to gain independence.

Balewa was nicknamed the Golden Voice of Africa because of his oratory skills; he is one of the three National Heroes of the Nigerian nation.

According to Olusegun Osoba former Governor of Ogun state in an interview with the Daily Trust news paper on 17 April, 2022 said:

Nicknamed the Golden Voice because of his oratory skills, he is one of the three National Heroes of the Nigerian nation (along with Nnamdi Azikiwe and Obafemi Awolowo). Although I was a very young reporter, he knew all of us by first name. Balewa was a father figure and easygoing. He had the air of leadership, but he was not one that would throw his weight. He was a rare leader. It is a pity that he died like that.