He was a Nigerian and a renowned globe-trotter, socialite and free lance journalist, who was described in many Nigerian songs as Africa’s greatest traveler. He was born in Ghana, then moved to Nigeria to school and went to the US at age 18 where he started his travels in the 50s. He supposedly went to 87 countries in six years and mostly on his bicycle.
Read Ajala in his own words:
“From America I went to Canada (where I spent a couple of years) and later on to Britain. In 1957 I began my one-man Odyssey around the world. It is still going on as I write this in Sydney, Australia. In nearly all the eighty-seven countries I have visited during the course of my six-year jaunt around the world (ranging from North America to Eastern and Western Europe, through Africa and Asia and as far east as Korea, Indonesia and Australia), I have observed many different political regimes both in democratic and communist states. I have met with brutality and racial intolerance. I have felt the bitter evil of man’s inhumanity to man, and have marbled at the goodness of the humane-hearted” `
Ajala explored the unexplored and charted the hitherto uncharted areas of the world. He wined and dined with heads of state and leaders including the late Alhaji Tafawa Balewa, first Republic Prime Minister of Nigeria; the late Paudit Nehru of India; the late Abdel Nasser of Egypt; the late Golda Meir of Israel; the late Marshall Ayub Khan of Pakistan; the late President Makarios of Greece; the late General Ignatuis Acheampong of Ghana and the late Odinga Oginga, one-time vice-president of Kenya. The list, indeed, is endless.But on the February 2, 1999, the man fondly known as “Ajala travel died. He died in penury. The world famous Ajala died unsung and unrecognised. His grave in central Lagos is no different from any other.
#AjalaTravelledAllOverTheWorld – Sunday