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Family, Friends Celebrate Life and Times of Ijebu-Ode Business Tycoon, Mama Namaco, Alhaja Sherifat Hassan

The family members including the children, other associates, and friends recently held a befitting Fidau prayer session marking the final burial ceremony for the late Alhaja Serifat Bukonla Hassan popularly known as Mama Namaco.

The popular trader, entrepreneur, and community leader died recently at the age of 77 and has since been buried according to Islamic injunctions.

The prayer session and final burial ceremony which was held at Balogun Shoye Molipa Road, Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State, featured recitations of Quranic verses while the guests were equally lavishly entertained.

The Fidau prayer was led by the Chief Imam of Ijebuland, Shaykh Miftaudeen Gbadegesin Ayanbadejo alongside other senior Islamic clerics and dignitaries who came around to celebrate the life and time of the late Alhaja Hassan, Mama Namaco.

Speaking with one of the children, Mr. Olakunle Hassan described his mother as one in a million and a lover of God and the people around her, saying the family would miss her affection and wise counsel.

Mr. Hassan said “Our mother is priceless, she was a mother in the true sense of it, she feared God and taught everyone around her the same. We are all going to miss Mama Namaco and our prayer is that the Almighty Allah will grant her Aljannah Fridouz.

“From what I remember she was kind, generous with a warm, open personality and a good sense of humour. Intensely moral, well-loved, and respected by everyone in her community.

“A woman who had nothing bad to say about anybody, and was fair and measured in all of her dealings. She left behind an entire clan of children, grandchildren, and even great-grandchildren who benefitted from the steps that she took throughout her life to establish and support her families, giving us the means to be successful as well as concrete examples to follow through her actions”.

In the same vein, giving her tribute, one of Mama Namaco’s daughters, Ayodele Basirat Ibrahim described her late mother as a woman everyone would love to have as a mother, saying that her determination and hard work were undoubtedly inspiring.

“Looking back, I feel so blessed to have spent my formative years with my dear lovely mother, she instilled in me the most important thing in life: family comes first. Her love for her family was unconditional.

“She would do anything to make them happy, especially her children; the bond she created with us, her grandchildren, was beautiful to witness. She made it clear that no matter our age, it was her duty to still look over us and love us unapologetically. Distance was no barrier for Grandma. She made sure everyone was safe and cared for, calling her children and grandchildren every day.

“Another key value I learned from my mother was the importance of a strong work ethic and entrepreneurial spirit. She was the epitome of a true hustler. From selling goods like coke and flowers to becoming the first female barber in Ijebu-Ode, she never shied away from hard work.

“And who could forget ‘SB-ONE Pure Water’, the water bottle company she built from the ground up? Grandma even played a pivotal role in politics. There was nothing she couldn’t do. She proved that women can achieve anything they set their minds to, and that is a legacy I will always carry with me.

“Even though Mama was older, she had a youthful spirit that was contagious. When she first came to America, I worried she wouldn’t like it. She had no friends here, and the culture was so different. But she proved me wrong. She embraced everything America had to offer and quickly adapted.

“She loved exploring new places, learning how to take the bus, and finding her way around. Jamaica Avenue in New York became her favorite spot – it reminded her of the bustling markets back in Lagos. She quickly became friends with the shop owners and they became like a second family to her.

“I will undoubtedly miss her lively and joyful energy. She always knew how to make someone smile, and there was never a dull moment with her. Her determination and hard work were truly inspiring. Grandma’s hard work and persistence led to her greatest accomplishment: obtaining her United States citizenship. It’s a testament to her strength and resilience.

“It brings joy to my heart that she lived a purposeful life and fulfilled her mission. The memories I have of her and the qualities she possesses will be cherished forever. She will be forever missed. May God grant her forgiveness and bless her with Al Jannah.

“How do you write about such an amazing woman at short notice with limited space and time? I will try as much as I can to share as much as possible with very few words.

“My Mummy was a unifier, a woman who loved and cared for her family dearly. She loved her children and did not hesitate to have as many as she could. She lived an exemplary adventurous and fulfilling life.

“At heart, she was a salesperson par Excellence; she often shared nostalgic stories of her work life and adventures in business. I love to hear them and she relished and eagerly told stories of how she legitimately earned money through sales commissions and business deals.

“She was lively and seemed happy but I sensed she had begun to prepare herself for the inevitable. Mama lived a beautiful life filled with love, selflessness, humility, and kindness.

“My loving mother would be remembered as an embodiment of love and a unifier that kept the Hassan (Namaco) family together till the very end. An Admirable Legacy by all standards”.

AIhaja Sherifat’s adorable life path showed very early in life, choosing to go the way of entrepreneurship. And she recorded major feats among peers and contemporaries.

The late community leader and entrepreneur could be best described as a hardworking, Industrious, and illustrious daughter, wife, and mother of Ijebu land.

Born on the 21st of July 1947, in Agbole-Aretu, Agbekoji, Oke-Bola,

Ibadan to a distinguished gentleman L.O.B. Otufale and a beauty to behold mother,  Omo Anomo Kobisesi.

Young Sherifat attended Ansarudeen School in Ijebu-Ode from 1954 to 1961 and had her modern education at Moslem Modern School, ljebu-Ode.

On completion of her modern education, she decided to learn hairdressing. In 1963-1964, she became the first lady hairdresser to specialize in straightening and curling. Her journey into motherhood started in 1963 when she got married to Alhaji G. Olu Hassan (Namaco).

She started her business career by joining her husband Alhaji  Hassan, the first Electrical /Electronics Engineer in ljebu-land in his electrical/electronic business.

The business grew into a conglomerate that includes NAMACO Rental Service, NAMACO Block Industry,

NAMACO Poultry Farms. The Group also had a contracting outfit (Government Contractor).

Alhaja Serifat Hassan, a quintessential community leader, and popular trader at New Market in Ijebu-Ode, was also a member of the Islamic Society of Ijebuland among others.

Mama is survived by children and grandchildren.

 

– Oluseun ODUNEYE, Abeokuta

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