In the history of Nigeria, there are so many people that rose swiftly on the ladder of prominence yet they did not die in the evening of their lives but at the early stage of their life when they still have so many things to do.
This happens to the case of Olabode Akanbi Thomas who is popuarly known as Cheif Bode Thomas, he died tragically on November 23, 1953 under curious circumstances. During that time he was 34 years old.
Chief Bode Thomas (October 1919- November 23, 1953) was a Nigerian lawyer, politician, States men and traditional aristocrat. He travelled to London to study law together with Remi Fani-Kayode and Cheif FRA Williams. When he got back to Nigeria he established a law firm which he named Thomas, Williams and Kayode in 1948 together with Cheif Frederick Rotimi Williams and Cheif Remilekun Fani Kayode.
Cheif Bode Thomas played some important role in the fight for self rule against the British serving as a lawyer, politician, statesmen and traditional aristocrat. With cheiC Bode Thomas style, he was seen as someone who is brilliant, logical, forward looking, astute thoughtful and a workhaolic. On the downside, he was viewed as arrogant, hot tempered and a bully.
On November 22,1953 Cheif Bode Thomas who has been appointed as the chairman of the Oyo divisional council having taken over from Alaafin Adeyemi ii. When he arrived the meeting with the Oba (King) in attendance as a member reports have it that every councillors stood up to welcome him except Oba Adeyemi in his 60s.
Thomas in anger impolitely told the King ” Why were you sitting when I walked in? Why can’t you show me respect?”. The Alaafin, feeling disrespected replied Thomas in anger ” Is it me you are barking like a dog at like that? Keep barking!”.
Reports hold that when Cheif Bode Thomas got home after the meeting that day, he started barking like a dog throughout the night at his house in Yaba, Lagos state. Cheif Bode Thomas died this following day (November 23, 1953) despite the level of treatment he was given.
The popular Bode Thomas street in Surulere is named after him.