Olaokun Soyinka

Despite experience in the Theatre Arts as a child stage and TV actor, Olaokun Soyinka escaped a life in the arts and became a medical doctor. However, unable to totally escape his roots, he turned his hand to medical writing and publishing, one result of which was his founding of the British Journal of Cardiology.

Soyinka was working in the UK when the Abacha Junta took over in Nigeria. He reassessed his plans to return to Nigeria when his relatives were forced into exile. He helped hasten the dictator's departure by playing an active role in the prodemocracy movement. He was a member of the team that set up Radio Kudirat. 

After the return of civilian rule in Nigeria, he returned home to pursue a career in public health. He worked initially as a health consultant then spent several years at the WHO country office. 

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