Elder Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo (1938-2023)

Elder Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo hailed from the Otuogidi community in Ogbia Kingdom, Bayelsa state. He was a highly accomplished educator and a devout Anglican from the Niger Delta region, known for his positive contributions to the field of education and for embracing the true riches of life.

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Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo was born on November 4, 1938, into the family of Mr. Baralagha and Mrs. Eteinmunu Tarinyo in Otuogidi town, which is located in the current Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa state. He was the third child out of five siblings.


In the 1947/1948 academic year, young Iduabo began his primary education at St. John’s Anglican School in Otuogidi. However, due to various relocations, he had to attend different schools during his primary education journey. He studied at St. Peter’s Anglican School in Opume from 1955 to 1956, followed by St. Paul’s Anglican School in Otuokpoti in 1957. He completed his primary education at St. Michael’s Anglican School in Oloibiri, where he obtained his First School Leaving Certificate in 1958.

Afterward, he pursued further education at the Anglican Preliminary Teacher’s Training College in Oporoma, where he obtained his Preliminary Teacher’s Certificate (PTC) following mandatory practical teaching examinations at State School Angiama in 1959. His educational journey continued at the Anglican Elementary Training College, also in Oporoma, where he earned the Elementary Training Certificate after practical teaching examinations conducted at State School Ekowe. This period of his education spanned from 1961 to 1962.

His unwavering passion for education drove him to seek further qualifications, and he enrolled at the Methodist Teacher’s Grade II Certificate Training College from 1966 to 1967. This college was located in Umueze Awkunanaw-Agbani, Nkanu Local Government Area, which is in present-day Enugu State. His goal was to obtain a Teacher’s Grade II Certificate. However, his educational journey faced a significant setback when the Nigerian Civil War of 1967 to 1969 erupted. As a result of the war, all schools were forcibly closed down, compelling him to return home.

After the Nigerian Civil War ended in 1969 and new states were created, schools reopened, and students were encouraged to return to their respective states to continue their education. Iduabo, as he was fondly known among his friends, was no exception. He promptly returned to school and resumed his Teacher’s Grade II program. This time, he attended St. John’s Teacher’s Training College in Diobu, Port Harcourt. He successfully completed his teacher’s training in 1969, following the mandatory practical teaching examination at Community Primary School, Elekahia, Port Harcourt. His thirst for education led him to the Rivers State College of Education, Port Harcourt, where he pursued his National Certificate of Education (NCE) degree from 1972 to 1975. This educational journey also involved mandatory practical teaching examinations at Ascension High School, Alesa-Eleme, Rivers State, between 1972 and 1975.

Continuing his pursuit of knowledge and further qualifications, Iduabo, armed with his NCE, secured admission to the prestigious University of Lagos, located in Akoka-Yaba. There, he completed his Bachelor of Arts Degree in History. During his undergraduate studies, he also underwent mandatory practical teaching examinations at both Jibril Martins Grammar School, Iponri-Ebute Meta, and Ansardin Girls High School Itire, both located in Lagos State. This academic journey spanned from 1977 to 1980.

Following the completion of his Bachelor’s degree, he fulfilled his national service obligation through the National Youth Service Scheme (NYSC). He was posted to Ikpe Community Secondary School in Ibam Edet, Ini Local Government Area, which was part of the then Cross River State (now Akwa Ibom State). He served in this capacity from 1980 to 1981.


Mr. Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo enjoyed a fulfilling career as an educationist. His teaching journey commenced in 1960 when he joined St. John’s School in Otuogidi, which is now part of Ogbia Local Government Area. At this point, he held a Preliminary Teacher’s Certificate. In recognition of his abilities, he was appointed as the Headmaster of St. Michael’s Anglican School in Fantuo, presently situated in Brass Local Government Area in 1963, following his acquisition of an Elementary Training Certificate.

Between 1964 and 1965, Mr. Tarinyo was transferred to St. Michael’s Anglican School in Oloibiri, a town within Ogbia Local Government Area. His unwavering thirst for knowledge and his deep passion for education drove him to further his education. He pursued additional certifications while diligently working to pay for his schooling. Subsequently, he returned to St. Michael’s Anglican School in Oloibiri, serving there from 1968 to 1971.

During his tenure at St. Michael’s Anglican School, Oloibiri, he took on additional responsibilities, serving as the Games/Sports Master for the school. He also assumed the role of President of the Young Farmers Club. His commitment to his work and his students was evident in these various roles.

Upon his return from his National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) assignment, he was appointed as the Vice Principal of St. John’s Teacher’s Training College, Diobu, Port Harcourt, a role he held from 1981 to 1982. In the same year, he was reassigned to the Government Teachers’ Training College in Rumuokwuta, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, where he took on the position of Vice Principal and later served as the Acting Principal between 1982 and 1984. Subsequently, in 1985, he was transferred back to St. John’s Teachers’ Training College, Diobu, Port Harcourt. At this institution, he was tasked with teaching a one-year program tailored for trained but uncertified teachers.

Following this, he was relocated to Government Secondary School, Borikiri, which was popularly known as “Njiko,” in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. Here, he took on the role of a Senior Tutor and served in this capacity from 1986 to 1988. Throughout his career, Mr. Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo demonstrated his commitment to education and made significant contributions to the development of students under his guidance.

Subsequently, Mr. Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo was reassigned to various educational institutions throughout his career. He assumed the role of Principal at Stella Maris College, Port Harcourt, from 1988 to 1990. In 1990, he was transferred to Government Secondary School, Twon Brass, located in Brass Local Government Area, where he served as Principal.

That same year, in 1990, he was moved to Nembe National Grammar School, Ogbolomabiri, Nembe, situated in Nembe Local Government Area, where he took on the position of Vice-Principal and held it from 1991 to 1996. In addition to his official duties, he took on the role of Course Tutor/Supervisor for Port Harcourt and Nembe Bassambiri National Teachers’ Institute (NTI), overseeing Teachers’ Certificate (TC) II and National Certificate of Education (NCE) Study Centres. He fulfilled this role from 1983 to 1996, coinciding with the creation of Bayelsa State.

Subsequently, he was transferred to the Bayelsa State Post Primary Schools Board, where he attained the position of Supervisor/Director of Supervision, serving in that capacity from 1997 to 2000. This marked his retirement from the Bayelsa State Civil Service. Additionally, he held the role of Chief Custodian for the National Examinations Council (NECO) for Ogbia Local Government Area senior secondary schools in 2000. Mr. Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo made a significant impact on many individuals in the Niger Delta who have gone on to achieve success in various professional fields.


Following his retirement from the civil service, Mr. Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo didn’t lead a stagnant life. He possessed a natural gift for keenly observing people and accurately assessing their behavior and character. His exceptional ability, combined with his unwavering commitment, diligence, and integrity, led him to return to work. From 2003 to 2008, he served as the Chairman of the Oloibiri Customary Court, located in Oloibiri, Ogbia Local Government Area.


Elder Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo encountered his wife, Roseline Itesobo Tarinyo (formerly Ikeni), affectionately known as ‘Anyi,’ a young lady hailing from Akipelai and Otuogidi communities, at the Anglican church in Otuogidi. They officially tied the knot on the 17th of February, 1969, and they remained married until his passing in 2023. Together, they were blessed with 7 children.


Iduabo was a devout Anglican in his faith. He was primarily recognized as a gentle church teacher who was actively involved at St. John Anglican Church during his time. His calm and quiet demeanor endeared him to many as he taught the Bible with profound knowledge and understanding, leaving those who learned from him amazed. He utilized his teaching skills not only to preach the gospel but to educate and impart the gospel.


Elder Iduabo was an incredibly hospitable and welcoming man. His home was open to everyone, including relatives, in-laws, friends, and even his children’s friends. He had a friendly, courteous, warm, and comfortable presence. Iduabo had a forward-thinking mindset with a strong interest in the growth and development of his community. It’s no surprise that when the Otuogidi Progressive Association (OPA) was established, his house at No. 24 Captain Amangala Street in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, served as the gathering place for like-minded individuals to discuss the progress of Otuogidi, his beloved community.

He possessed an exceptional ability to judge character, and he would quietly assess people and situations. He could easily detect when someone was being dishonest, a rare quality that his students, children, and their friends can attest to. Iduabo was highly observant of his surroundings and had an uncanny knack for accurately evaluating the people he encountered. He had a unique way of making individuals recognize their mistakes without the need for scolding. He firmly believed in the power of one’s conscience. Furthermore, he was a dependable and living historical archive of Ogbia Kingdom, known for his captivating storytelling that left his audience spellbound. His stories often carried a touch of humor, and he would occasionally crack jokes, even if he himself didn’t laugh, but when he did laugh, it had a distinct sound resembling coughing, although he smiled a lot.

In the realm of music, his preferred genres were reggae and country. He enjoyed listening to artists such as Bob Marley, Lucky Dube, Ras Kimono, Evi Edna Ogholi, Don Williams, among others. What’s more, he was a very meticulous individual who liked to wash and iron his clothes personally. His favorite colors were white and cream, and in his younger days, he had a fashion sense akin to French Safari.

Elder Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo was known for his preference for clean and green surroundings. He not only planted flowers and fruit trees but also nurtured them as if they were his own children, closely watching their growth and ensuring their needs were met. He was patient and didn’t like to harvest fruits before their due time. He held a deep affection for children and would often engage them in thought-provoking discussions, eager to understand their knowledge and areas where they needed guidance. This could be attributed to his background as an educator, as he never missed an opportunity to teach or share his knowledge.

In addition, His favorite meal was beans porridge, and he relished a good plate of it.

His favorite pastime was tuning in to the radio. He kept a transistor radio by his side at all times and would start and end his day with it. His love for radio made him well-informed about various events, from local news to international broadcasts, with a particular interest in programs like the BBC and Voice of America. In his final days, he found solace in singing hymns, and his face often wore a smile as he sang.


Elder Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo, a cheerful and hearty man, began experiencing health issues, which is quite common at his age, around 2018. His health gradually declined, and his children took him to the hospital on several occasions. After a series of medical examinations, he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, a central nervous system disorder that affects movement, often causing tremors. This disease gradually took over Iduabo’s life and left him incapacitated. His devoted wife and children provided him with care and support throughout his illness. He peacefully passed away at home in the Opolo area of Yenagoa, Bayelsa state, surrounded by his loved ones on the 19th of August, 2023. His final resting place will be in his hometown of Otuigidi, where he will be interred on the 15th of December 2023. Elder Samuel Iduabo Tarinyo was 85 years old.

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"Timeless Persons" is a personal blog project created by me with the aim of sharing the biographies of remarkable individuals from the Niger Delta region and beyond. The blog serves as a platform to captivate and stimulate your thoughts, encouraging reflection on the past, fostering a positive mindset in the present, and inspiring hope for a better future.