Professor Isaac Folorunso Adewole
was a
Former Minister of Health, Federal Republic of Nigeria
Former Vice-Chancellor, University of Ibadan (UI)
Former Provost, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan (CoMUI)
Former Dean, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, CoMUI
Former Head, Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, CoMUI

The Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan invites the public to the valedictory programme in honour of Professor Isaac Folorunso Adewole who is set to formally retire from active service at the College of Medicine, University of Ibadan.

The details of the event are given below:

Lecture Title: African Response to Emerging Public Health Threats: Lessons Learnt from EBOVAC and HPV Vaccine Trials

Guest Speaker: Professor Deborah Watson-Jones PhD (Faculty of Infectious Diseases, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK)

Venue: Emeritus Professor Theophilus Oladipo Ogunlesi Hall, Opposite UCH Main Gate, Ibadan.

Date: Thursday, 2nd May 2024

Time: 11.00 am WAT

The event can be followed virtually too and here are the details below:

YouTube Link: CLICK HERE
Zoom Link Title: Valedictory Programme in Honour of Prof Isaac Folorunso Adewole
Join Zoom Meeting here: CLICK HERE
Meeting ID: 871 5711 8283
Passcode: IFA@70

Join us in celebrating the remarkable career of Professor Isaac Folorunso Adewole, a teacher of teachers, an exceptional leader, and a visionary trailblazer in healthcare and academia.

Thank you.


I take this as a great opportunity to write a tribute to Professor Isaac Folorunso Adewole FAS, aptly referred to as IFA, with respect, honour, and gratitude. I reflect on the extraordinary journey of a man whose impact has echoed through the corridors of medicine, education, and governance.

Professor Adewole is indeed a distinguished medical practitioner in Nigeria, a very fine researcher, and academician whose career spans decades of remarkable contributions to healthcare, education, and policymaking. He epitomises excellence in the medical profession and embodies the values of dedication, compassion, and innovation. His passion for medicine led him to specialise in Obstetrics and Gynaecology. He went on to become a world-renowned Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist. Prof. Adewole has served as the Dean of the Faculty of Clinical Sciences & Dentistry and later as the 7th Provost of the College of Medicine at the University of Ibadan. He further distinguished himself as the 11th Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ibadan and left a legacy of exceptional initiatives and infrastructural development.

In 2015, he was appointed Minister of Health in Nigeria where he spearheaded initiatives to strengthen healthcare systems and address public health challenges. In his role as Minister of Health for Nigeria, Professor Adewole's visionary leadership and tireless advocacy were instrumental in shaping national health policies and programmes aimed at enhancing access to quality healthcare services and addressing pressing public health challenges. His dedication to the welfare and well-being of all Nigerians equally shows his commitment to serving humanity.

Professor Adewole is also celebrating his 70th birthday and so this calls for reflection on seven decades of a life well spent. I acknowledge the impact of his life and legacy which will inspire many more generations of healthcare professionals and educators alike in our institution, in Nigeria and, I daresay, all over the world. Beyond his contributions to medical research, policy development, and capacity building, I look forward to learning so much more about his views on leadership. He has done it at the highest levels, and I believe he did it with exceptional results. We must always celebrate our own.

So, on behalf of the entire staff and students of the College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, I extend my deep appreciation to Professor Adewole for his exemplary service, leadership, and dedication to the advancement of medicine and medical education. May this new season be filled with joy, fulfilment, and continued blessings as he embarks on this new chapter of life. May the good Lord keep him safe, healthy, and sound, as he enjoys the fruit of his labours.

Please, watch out for his interview with the College’s media team which will be released on Thursday, 2nd May 2024.

We look forward to hearing greater things from him and about him in the years to come. Amen.

Olayinka Omigbodun FAS
Professor of Psychiatry and Provost.



The seventh child in a family of nine, Professor Isaac Folorunso Adewole was born on Wednesday, May 5, 1954, inside a motor vehicle belonging to Pa Timothy Abimbola, a wholesale medicine dealer in Ilesa on the way to Wesley Guild Hospital, Ilesa. His father, Pa Benjamin Aina Ajenifuja Adewole was a distributor to UAC and GB Ollivant selling building materials, wholesale drinks and farm inputs. His mother, Madam Florence Monisola Adewole sold household utensils and cooking materials at the same premises till Pa Adewole passed on to eternity on 01 September, 1976 at the University College Hospital, Ibadan.

Isaac attended Methodist Primary School Ogudu, Ilesa (1960-61), Methodist Primary School 1, Oke Ado Ibadan (1962-63) and St Mathias Demonstration School, Akure (1964-65). He attended Ilesa Grammar School, Ilesa from 1966–1972 from where he obtained Grade 1 with Distinction at the West African School Certificate Examination in 1970 and AAC at Higher School Certificate Examination in 1972. Even though his initial plan was to choose a career in aeronautics, particularly aerospace engineering, his school guidance counselor – Mr Adelekun – suggested subjects that were eventually useful for a career in Medicine. He enrolled as a National Award Scholar at the University of Ibadan in 1973 and obtained his MB BS degree from the University in 1978 with the Glaxo Allenbury prize for the best performance in Paediatrics. He joined the services of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology as a Senior House Officer in 1981, became a registrar in 1982 and a Senior Registrar in 1984 before proceeding to the United Kingdom for a Research Fellowship in the Department of Medical Oncology of Charring Cross Hospital.

Professor Adewole was appointed Lecturer I at the College of Medicine, University of Ibadan in 1989 and also as Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist to the University College Hospital, Ibadan. He was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 1992 and Professor in 1997. He was Dean of the Faculty of Clinical Sciences & Dentistry (2000 – 2002), before becoming the 7th Provost of the College of Medicine from 2002 to 2006 during which he made significant contributions to the growth and development of the College of Medicine. After his tenure as the Provost, Prof Adewole returned to the department to serve as the Head of department for the second time.

In December 2010, Prof Adewole became the 11th Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ibadan and the giant strides and impacts he made in the University have remained a reference point in many discussions on university administration across Nigeria till today. Aside from regular payment of salaries, Prof Adewole was passionately committed to the welfare and capacity development of staff and students of the institution for its sustainable growth. This was reflected in the large number of academic and non-academic staff who benefited from his staff development programs which exposed them to international conferences and training programs. It was during his tenure as the Vice Chancellor that he facilitated the establishment of the National Institute for Maternal and Child Health in the College of Medicine of the University by the President Goodluck Jonathan-led administration. The 1500-capacity Computer-Based Testing centre at the Distance Learning Centre, Ajibode Extension which he initiated and completed has remained a star project in the University system in Nigeria. He also initiated and completed the vertical extension of the University.

In the Medical-political terrain, Prof Adewole served as the Secretary-General and President of the National Association of Resident Doctors of Nigeria (NARD) between 1982 and 1984. He was the Secretary-General of the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) 1991–1993 and the Chairman of Nigeria Medical Association, Oyo state chapter in 1993 as well as the Assistant Secretary-General of the Confederation of African Medical Associations and Societies (CAMAS) 1993–1995.

Prof. Isaac Folorunso Adewole has served on several national and international organizational boards and programmes on research and policy for cancer control. He was a Commissioner on the WHO High-Level Commission on NCD (2018-2019) and the Lancet Oncology Commission on Cancer Control in Sub-Sahara Africa. He is also a member UNESCO/UNFPA-sponsored High Level Committee on West and Central Africa (WCA) Commitment for educated, healthy and thriving adolescents and young people. In 2016, at the World Cancer Congress in Paris, and with Dr Jackson Orem of Uganda, he co-founded the African Cancer Coalition with support from the American Cancer Society. Currently, he is involved with reviewing the National Comprehensive Cancer Network Harmonized Cancer Treatment Guidelines for Sub-Saharan Africa while also serving on the Lancet Commission on Cancer and Health systems.

Being a global health expert and leader, Professor Adewole has remained a leading advocate of nationwide access to cervical screening and has extensive management experience at both national and international levels. He is actively involved in research and advocacy work on Cervical Cancer and HIV and AIDS and has led several research projects on prevention, diagnosis, and capacity building on cervical cancer in Nigeria as well as Sub-Sahara Africa. He was a co-Principal Investigator of the Medical Education Partnership Initiative in Nigeria (MEPIN) and Principal Investigator of the Harvard US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) (APIN Plus) Program. He served as Chair of the National Task team on the Prevention of Mother to Child Transfer (PMTCT) of HIV. He was the country’s Principal Investigator for “Operation Stop Cervical Cancer” in Nigeria and is a member of the International Taskforce on Elimination of Cervical Cancer in the Commonwealth.

Professor Adewole holds membership in many learned societies, such as the Society of Gynaecology & Obstetrics of Nigeria; the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics (FIGO); International AIDS Society (IAS); the European Research Organization on Genital Infection and Neoplasia (EUROGIN); the International Gynaecological Cancer Society (IGCS), Nigeria Cancer Society (NCS), Gynaecological Oncology Society of Nigeria (GOSON) and the African Organization for Research and Training in Cancer (AORTIC) where he was a former President. He was elected a Fellow of the Nigeria Academy of Science in 2012 and was awarded honorary Doctor of Science by both the University of Sunderland in 2015 and Baze University, Abuja in 2023.

Prof Adewole has delivered many guest lectures, numerous communications at scientific conferences, abstracts, and poster presentations. A widely travelled man, he has attended over 270 national and international scientific conferences and workshops. As a prolific researcher, he has authored more than 250 publications on topics such as cervical cancer, sexual and reproductive health and rights, abortion, HIV, and Human Papillomavirus. He is the Guttmacher Institute’s 2008 Bixby Leadership Fellow in Reproductive Health and the former Chair of the sub-Saharan African Cervical Cancer Working Group (CCWG). He is currently a Senior Health Consultant to the Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC), a member of the Board of Trustees of the IPPF and Chair of the Governing Board of the SEMA-Reproductive Health.

He has been an external examiner in Obstetrics and Gynaecology to several Nigerian Universities, the National Postgraduate Medical College as well as the West African College of surgeons. He is a professorial assessor to many Universities in Africa and USA and has remained an adjunct Professor at Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois, USA since May 2010. Prof. Adewole has served as member of governing council of several Universities including Adeleke University, Ede and the multi-campus, AU-sponsored Pan-African University. He is the pioneer Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Governing Council of University of Ilesa.

On November 11th 2015, Prof. Isaac Folorunso Adewole was appointed as the Honourable Minister of Health, Nigeria by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration where he made tremendous impact to the health system of Nigeria. Among his outstanding achievements included the flag-off of the basic healthcare provision fund, nationwide revitalization of Primary Healthcare centres and the use of the Primary Healthcare services as fulcrum for Universal Health Coverage, establishment of WHO-facilitated database on Quality, Equity and Dignity for Maternal and Perinatal care as well as the Cancer Health Fund for indigent cancer patients in Nigeria. He also superintended over the Nigeria AIDS Indicator and Impact Survey (NAIIS) that revised the burden of HIV in Nigeria. In recognition of his contributions towards strengthening the bilateral relations between Japan and Nigeria especially in the health sector the Japan Emperor, His Majesty Naruhito awarded him the Order of Rising Star, Gold, and Silver Star of Japan in 2020.

Professor Isaac Adewole is a Christian and a respected Deacon at the Agbala Daniel Cathedral, Ojoo, Ibadan. He is a Patron of the Boys Brigade of Nigeria he enjoys watching football and loves reading, particularly biographies and books on leadership, and politics. He also loves watching Africa Magic, particularly during the weekend as he believes that most of the things being displayed on Africa Magic reflect contemporary issues in the society. Prof Adewole is happily married with children and grandchildren.

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