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GA Ogunbanjo Award for Excellence

Posted: 2023-03-13 11:28

Prof Gboyega A Ogunbanjo
24 June 1958 – 17 August 2019

GA Ogunbanjo Award For Excellence Awarded for the first time at the CMSA Cape Town Admission Ceremony on 15 March 2023

GA Ogunbanjo Award For Excellence was endowed in 2021 by the Nigerian Doctors Forum South Africa to commemorate Prof Gboyega Ogunbanjo by giving annual awards to the best candidates in the final exam of the College of Family Physicians.

Professor Ogunbanjo was well-respected and a giant in the South African medical fraternity, with his span of work reaching far and beyond the African Continent. He was well known for his passion for serving the most vulnerable of our society through his chosen speciality  of Family Medicine and was one of the pillars of strength of the CMSA, serving for several years in various capacities with tenacity and tireless dedication.

Professor Ogunbanjo was born on 24 June 1958 in Lagos, Nigeria.  He graduated from the College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Nigeria in 1982 and completed his Family Medicine training at the Medical University of Southern Africa (now Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University), Pretoria in 1996. He held Fellowships of The Colleges of medicine of South Africa, Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine, Australasian College of Tropical Medicine, South African Academy of Family Practice, West African College of Physicians and the College of Primary Care Physicians of Zimbabwe.

At the time of his death, Prof Ogunbanjo was the Second Vice President of the College of Medicine of South Africa and Immediate Past President of the Council of the College of Family Physicians.  He also brought a lot of fun to the CMSA, with his traditional bet collection for the correct guess-time for the guest speech at our Admission Ceremonies.

He was also Chief Specialist, Full Professor and Academic Head: Department of Family Medicine & Primary Health Care, Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University. In addition, he was Honorary Professor: Family Medicine & Rural Health Department, Walter Sisulu University, Mthatha; Adjunct Professor: Dept. of Family Medicine & Public Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of Botswana, Botswana; and Professor: Dept. de Medicine de Familie Université Protestante au Congo, Kinshasa DRC. He was external examiner to the departments of Family Medicine at Universities of Witwatersrand, Cape Town, Pretoria, KwaZulu-Natal, Free State, Walter Sisulu, Stellenbosch in South Africa; Makerere University, Kampala Uganda; Moi University, Eldoret Kenya, Universiti Kebangsan Malaysia (UKM), National University of Rwanda, Protestant University of the Congo (UPC), DRC, University of Botswana & University of Ghana.

As part of his academic citizenship, he played significant roles in the transformation of Family Medicine into a full specialty in South Africa. He was a frontline player in Family Medicine at the national and subcontinental levels. He was the Vice-President of the South African Academy of Family Physicians and Honorary Registrar: Examinations of the Colleges of Medicine of South Africa (CMSA). Prof Ogunbanjo was also a faculty member of the Advancing Research Ethics Training in Southern Africa (ARESA). He was Editor-in-chief: South African Family Practice Journal; Editor: Transactions Journal of the Colleges of Medicine of South Africa (CMSA); Overseas editorial adviser: Nigerian Postgraduate Medical Journal; Editorial board member: Southern African Journal of Infectious Diseases (SAJID); Editorial board member: Advances in Medical Education and Practice Journal; and International Advisory board member: Malaysian Journal of Medicine and Health Sciences to mention a few. Prof Ogunbanjo was a regular plenary speaker at many national, African and global conferences on Family Medicine & Primary Health Care.

Professor Ogunbanjo was invited as a plenary speaker to many national, African and global conferences on various topics in the field of Family Medicine and Primary Health Care. He presented 47 papers, 34 posters at 86 conferences spanning a period of over 22 years in countries such as South Africa, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, China, Australia, Malaysia, Austria, UK, Slovenia, USA, Belgium and Singapore.

It is rare in life to work with people who are consummate professionals, but most of all who have heart, Prof Ogunbanjo had both these in abundance. To the young health professionals, he was a colleague, a friend, a father, a sounding board, a solid rock – but most of all, he was kindness and heart personified.  His towering legacy will not only be in his academic excellence and the tireless work he did for our country, continent, and the globe, but it will be in each heart that he touched with his kindness and generosity.  “Professor Gboyega Ogunbanjo made an enormous contribution and had a great impact on the CMSA family. Prof O, as he was affectionately known, will be dearly missed. We thank the Ogunbanjo family for sharing this giant of a man with us. His legacy lives on through the many lives he touched and the indelible mark he leaves,” Prof Flavia Senkubuge, Immediate Past President, CMSA.

 A devout Christian and Associate Pastor at the Cornerstone Assemblies of God church, Pretoria, Prof Ogunbanjo is survived by his beautiful wife – Mrs. Priscilla Ogunbanjo and two sons – Olusegun and Oluseyi.

(Reference: CMSA Transactions, Volume 63(2) July – December 2019)

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