(Rotn Ayoola Oyedokun:: District Governor 2021-22)
The first Rotary Club in Africa was chartered in South Africa in 1921, Rotary Club of Johannesburg, followed by Rotary Club of Cairo, Egypt in 1929. Rotary Club of Dakar, Senegal was established in 1939 as the first club in West Africa, it took 17 years to form another club in Abidjan Cote d' voire in 1956, then Doula Cameroon in 1957 and Accra Ghana in 1958.
Rotary arrived in Nigeria in 1961 by formation of Rotary Club of Kano on 28th April, Rotary Club of Lagos in May and Rotary Club of Ibadan on 24th November all in 1961.
In 1972/73, Nigeria produced her first District Governor for District 210 when Rotarian Anofi Guobadia of the Rotary club of Ikeja came into office.
The District was later renamed 910. During the period 1973 to 1981, Rotarians from about 14 countries in West Africa were grouped into one District.
The effect of Rotary was felt by the society through its various laudable projects and activities.
Nigeria produced her second District Governor in 1980/81 when Rotarian Jon Majiyagbe of the Rotary club of Kano took charge of District 910. This encouraged Rotary International to consider redistricting with the creation of the Rotary District 911 comprising all clubs throughout Nigeria in 1982/83 Rotary year.
The first District Governor of the newly created All Nigerian District 911 was Rotarian Past District Governor Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi. In that year (1982/83) PDG Juli as he is fondly called criss-crossed Nigeria several times doing some 26,000 kilometers by air, by land and over water to spread the message of Rotary with the support of well chosen, motivated, committed and coordinated team of District officers.
PDG Juli and his team created a new dawn for Rotary in Nigeria with establishment of 31 new clubs, thus having a growth of about 100% in one Rotary year! A feat that won the commendation and salutation of
Rotary International as the best ever from any District in the Rotary world at that time.
This growth encouraged the redistricting of the District 911 to form two Districts for Nigeria District 911 and 912. PDG Bob Ogbuagu took over from PDG Juli as Governor of District 912 and sustained the tempo with great charm and enthusiasm, typical of a PR Guru and veteran that he was.
With the redistricting exercise, PDG Babs Ajayi became the third District Governor of District 911 comprising six states and the FCT i.e. Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Ondo, Kwara, Sokoto and FCT.
The clubs in the remaining part of Nigeria went with District 912. Thus it was less cumbersome to manage and consolidate the growth already achieved, which PDG Babs Ajayi did effectively and sustained as well.
With sustained growth, PDG Bayo Adetunji became District Governor in 1985/86 as the 4th Governor of the District. In 1985/1986, Nigeria was redistricted into 4 Districts 911,912, 913 & 914 and changed in 1990/1991 to 9110, 9120, 9130 & 9140.
Due to decline in membership in District 9120 and 9130, Rotary International charged the two Districts to increase membership or be merged together. Following the decision by the Rotary International Board in their February 2006 meeting when they requested the two former
Districts (9120 & 9130) to work out the modalities to actualize the merger, District 9125 came into existence in July 2009 as the outcome of the merger between former Districts 9120 and 9130.
The newly created District 9125 occupies about 90% of the landmass of Nigeria. Out of the estimated 140 million people in Nigeria, about 97 million people are in District 9125. It covers the FCT and the following 23
states, Oyo, Ondo, Osun, Ekiti, Kwara, Kogi, Niger, Kano, Kaduna, Sokoto, Katsina, Jigawa, Zamfara, Borno, Adamawa, Taraba, Kebbi, Yobe, Bauchi, Plateau, Benue, Nasarawa, Gombe and FCTAbuja.
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