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Peter Osugo, ‘The Rock Of Daily Times’, Passes On At 92

The Oasis Reporters

February 1, 2022



Peter Osugo, alias Pecos.

Sadness and nostalgia have become noticeable in Nigeria’s sport’s writing world as they mourn the passage of the grand doyen of the noble profession, Peter Chukwuma Osugo aka PECOS on January 24th, 2022 at the age of 92.

PECOS or Jet Forces as he was also known was a polymath who straddled, and excelled in the domains of Geology, Politics, Journalism and Sports, respectively.

Born in Port Harcourt on 21st April 1929 to Chief Gabriel and Agnes Osugo of the Umu-Obi Osugo Royal family of Ase Community in Ndokwa East Local Government Area of Delta State,
Nigeria, Peter was significant in politics in the late 1940s – 1950s as an active member of the Zikist Movement and together with Michael Imoudu, headed the Kaduna branch of the movement.

History records the movement’s protests against colonialism which attracted the wrath of the British Colonial Government, thus making them proceed to stifle the protests by imprisoning Pecos and many others, and then, ultimately banning the Zikist movement.

Peter Osugo grew up in the Northern part of Nigeria where his father worked with the Nigeria Railways Corporation as a locomotive driver who was also famous in his own right for being the first Nigerian to drive a locomotive across the River Niger, soon after the Niger bridge was commissioned at Jebba.

He had most of his elementary school
education in Minna of present-day Niger State before proceeding to St. Gregory’s College, Obalende, Lagos where his talent as an athlete and sportsman was identified and nurtured by the school principal, Fr. Moran.

The young Peter Osugo went on to represent St. Gregory’s College
and the then Lagos Colony in the 440 yards (400 metres) race and held the Nigerian record in this event for many years.

On leaving school, he joined the Nigeria Geological Survey in Kaduna as a technical assistant, analysing rock samples to decipher the minerals and fluids from the main geological basins in the country.

However, the momentum towards
independence could not be stopped as this was ultimately achieved in 1960.

PECOS found his true calling as a journalist when he joined the West African Pilot as a reporter, rising to become Lead Writer and making his mark with exceptional columns which focused on
nationalism and opposition to the colonial government.

He joined the Daily Times and became
Sports Editor and then Editor of the Sunday Times which became the largest selling newspaper in Nigeria by 1975. His incisive writings on Nigerian and Global sports coupled with his previous
background as an elite athlete came to the attention of a new breed of Nigerian entrepreneurs notably Israel Adebajo who had acquired the Stationery Stores Supply Company in Apapa and wanted to start a football club to promote the company brand.

Adebajo approached PECOS to
become the team manager of the Stationery Stores Football Club and the rest is history.

Stores or The Adebajo Babes as they were fondly known became the lightning rod for Nigerian football with a fanatical Lagos and national fan base. They won all the domestic trophies and went through an entire league season unbeaten.

Players like Peter Fregene, Sam Opone and later Haruna Ilerika became synonymous with Stores and the Nigerian National Team.

With up to nine Stores players
in the national team, PECOS was logically invited to become the Team Manager and he is credited with renaming the team from the Red Devils to the Green Eagles and of course this metamorphosed to the current Super Eagles.

PECOS became very involved in his local Parish at St Dominic Catholic Church, Yaba where he was very active in leading the children’s ministry. He was one of the first graduating students of
the Siena Institute of Theology for Lay People (SITLAP) organinzed by the Dominicans and graduated with merit; a feat he accomplished at the age of 74.

A great family man, Peter Osugo
was happily married to Helen Osugo née Mafeni, an acclaimed educationist who joined her Creator in 2009.

He is survived by his brothers, sisters, children, grandchildren and a great grandchild.

Adieu PECOS!!! What a time to hang up the spikes & boots and drop the mighty pen to take a well-earned rest with YOUR CREATOR.

N.B. Details of the burial obsequies will be announced in the obituary notices in the National newspapers.

Tributes should be addressed to

Leo Osugo
For the OSUGO Family
29th January 2022

Greg Abolo

Blogger at The Oasis Reporters.

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