CAC Yaba DCC headquarters holds another world class Choir Concert to commemorate 80th anniversary

By ‘Gbenga Bankole


It was another display of world class performance backed by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit at the Choir Concert of Christ Apostolic Church, Yaba Districts' Coordinating Council (DCC) headquarters, Lagos on Sunday October 11, 2020.


The concert provided an unforgettable three hours of enthralling musical voyage that calmed nerves and blessed souls beyond measures.


The choir in their colorful and beautiful attires performed songs like “Adom Nyame” by Ralph Ebow Taylor, “Emi yio Yin Oluwa” by Ajibola Oluyelu, Male Quartet & Choir - Peace Be Still- GHB 859 (A special rendition for the COVID-19 situation) and “Olorun Betel” by Ayo Oluranti.


While ministering on the topic “O God of Bethel”, the DCC Superintendent of Yaba DCC, Pastor S.E.A. Oludare said at times we pray amiss because we don’t know the God we pray to.


Explaining who God of Bethel is, the Cleric said God of Bethel never forgets, He is the God that desires fellowship and worship, adding that God enjoys our fellowship with Him.


He further said that He is the God who wants purity and holiness, who wants the best and will never take not just anything, He wants the best.


Pastor Oludare noted that God of Bethel answers prayers, protects His people, gives new name, blesses and makes His people multiply and gives personal covenant.


According to him, God wants us to have personal relationship with Him, until we go back to Bethel, we may not experience God.


The Matron, CAC Yaba Choir, Deaconess Folashade Jacobs said CAC Yaba came into existence in June 1940 when the church known then as “Apostolic Church of Ebute Metta Yaba,” was locally administered by the General Men’s Committee.


She stated further that the choir then was a small group of young boys and girls who met regularly in the house of Elder Ilori at Oba Soile’s place on Moleye street, Yaba for choir practice.  


Below is the full history of CAC Yaba Choir according to Deaconess Jacobs:

The Choir of Christ Apostolic Church Yaba came into existence in June 1940 when the church known then as "Apostolic Church of Ebute Metta Yaba," was locally administered by the General Men's Committee. The Choir then was a small group of young boys and girls who met regularly in the house of Elder ilori at Oba Soile's place on Moleye Street, Yaba for choir practice. Notable among the first set of choristers was the late Baba Ijo (Church Patron) of C.A.0 Yaba. Baba Elder M. Olu Owoaje and the children of Late PastorAdebogun who was the Pastor in charge of the Church. The first choirmaster was Elder Okpe ably assisted by Elder Adegbolagun.



Late Pastor I. Olu Siwoku join the choir in early fifties. In the mid-fifties, under the administration of Later Pastor M. Olu Aoko as the choirmaster Pastor Adebogun bought the first Pedal organ for the church choir. This period also witnessed the era of Late Pastor C.O.W Awolaja as the choirmaster after being invited by the Late Pastor Yilu, the then Pastor of the Church 'Baba Cow' as he was fondly called was a strict disciplinarian and it was during his administration that the choir witnessed tremendous growth in its activities. This was the period that brought this choir to limelight. It was a period in which the Choir gained ground not only in the Church but also amongst neighboring churches - a period where solid legacies were laid.



Elder M. Olu Owoaje became the Choirmaster in the 70's assisted by Prince S.A. Adeosun and Bro. Jide Okedara who specialized in voice training and singing of negro spirituals. The trio where saddled with the responsibility of handling the affair of the choir which was done to the glory of God satisfactorily. The year 1980 brought another era into the Choir following the arrival of the indefatigable Elder G. Pope Dopemu and Elder S.K.O. Annan. These two music icons led the Choir through thick and thin. Their achievements are highly commendable. It was also recorded that the Choir was invited to perform at various occasions both inside and outside the Church. The Choir also participated in various competitions which contributed to the fame that the Choir has been accorded with. This era was the precursor to the Platinum years that the Choir has currently grown into.


This is a period of great musical dexterity and enlightenment, a period that propelled the Choir to the international scene. In 1990, Elder S.K.O. Annan became the Choirmaster and has remained so till date. He was assisted initially by Late Prince S.A. Adeosun who passed the baton to Elder Sesan Taiwo who is the Assistant Choirmaster till date. The Choir thrived under this administration witnessing development in all spheres of the Ministry. It was during this period that the Choir experienced an influx of great and accomplished musicians, some of whom include, Bro. Tolu Owoaje (Artist-in-residence, University of lbadan), Bro. Seun Owoaje (Music composer, arranger, producer and fine pianist), Bro. Ayo Ajayi (an instructor at the MUSON music school) and Bro. Adejola Adeosun who now plays at the Cathedral Church of Christ Marina. These people are known for their unrivalled music performance.



It is a fact of history that this Choir produced the first recording ever amongst all C.A.C. Choirs, second only to EC WA in Nigeria. It all started in 1968/69 with lyrics like " Gbebe Mi Atobiju", " Kristi mo fara Mi fun 0", " Ko s'eni bi Jesu" and so on. The first royalty given to the Choir for its recordings was 190 pounds sterling which was paid to the Choir account. The leader of the recording team was Late Prince S.A. Adeosun and some notable singers then were the Late Elder Omoworare, Elder E.S.A. Jaiyesimi, Elder Sunday Oguntope, Bro. Ajao (now an Elder at C.A.C. Olugbode, Ibadan), Deaconess D. Olowoaro, Deaconess E.F. Shoneye, Deaconess Shade Jacobs, Sister Yoyin Sosina, Bro. M.O. Magbagbeola and many others.


In the early 90's to late 90's, the Choir also had regular recording sessions with Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) on some of its notable programmes such as " Let's worship", and " Community Hymn Singing" etc. Pastor S.O. Meroyi was the anchor for the quarterly Community Hymn Singing while the Choir was being led by Elder S.K.O. Annan, assisted by Elder Sesan Taiwo, Bro. Seun Owoaje, Bro. Ayo Ogunranti (Jnr.) now Bro. Ayo Oluranti, Bro. Gbenga Adeyefa and others. Other notable Choristers then were Bro. Sunday Adefarakan, Pastor Kunle Magbagbeola, Deaconess Funke Oshilaja, Sis. Mary Yaige, Bro. Kayode Jaiyesimi, Elder Tunde Magbagbeola, Deaconess Odewunmi, Elder Bamidele Ojo, Bro. Lekan Oluyelu, Sis. Dupe Jaiyesimi, Bro. 'Jibola Oluyelu, Bro. Femi Siwoku and Bukky Siwoku etc. These recordings brought fame and popularity to the Church. The Choir also had some recordings with the " Nigerian Television" now the " Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Lagos Television 5 now LTV



 The Choir is being governed by the tenets of Christ Apostolic Church, Worldwide. The Choir is also and affiliate of the Royal School of Church Music (RSCM) Cleveland Lodge, Surrey, UK. This has helped to project this Choir to the international scene as some of our Choristers were presented with awards while the leaders of the Choir got medals.



This Choir had regularly featured in competitions with other churches in Nigeria from inception. In 1959, Elder G. Pope was invited by Elder M. Olu Owoaje to assist the Choir towards the performance for the burial of Late Pastor Odubanjo which was keenly contested for by other churches. To the Glory of God this choir came first. Between 1994 and 1999, Christ Apostolic Church, Lagos District Coordinating Council organized competitions among its choirs. This choir came first on three occasions out of five. The Choir had at different times received invitations to perform at various fora, one of such was when Roy Wales came to Nigeria in 1997/98 to conduct a training and concert at the MUSON center, Lagos. This Choir was one of the five choirs invited for the final performance after series of auditions. Furthermore, the Choir also sponsors some of its members on an annual basis to write graded music examinations at the MUSON Center and we've recorded huge success in all grades.



Up till 1956, the choir robe was cassocks and surplice for both male and female. Females may however put on collaret. In 1969, a new set of robes were sewn and dedicated. In 1972, another set was sewn in form of academic gown. In 2009, new sets of robes were sewn and this was sponsored by Bro. Oladele Awolaja who was a member of the choir in the 1960's and the last son of late Pastor C O.W. Awolaja (A former choirmaster). In 2016 another new set of robes was sewn and sponsor by the family of Mr. and Mrs. Lekan Oluwalonimi Oluyelu who is alto a prominent member of the choir till date.



The choir in conjunction with other church choirs started a music concert tagged Mass Choir Concert in the mid 90's with over 300 choristers from Christ Apostolic Churches and other churches. This programme has promoted unity, encouraged stronger bonds and also raised the standard of music in this church and other participating churches respectively. Some of the past and present planning committee members include, Pastor Rotimi Olusheye, Pastor Ayo Adeusi, Elder S.K.O. Annan, Elder 'Bidemi Oyesanya (Chairman, Music Committee),

Elder Bamidele Ojo, Elder Sesan Taiwo, Elder Tope Amudipe, Bro. Segun Bashorun, Bro. Lekan Oluyelu, Bro. Ayo Ajayi, Pastor Kunle Magbagbeola, Bro. 'Jibola Oluyelu, Deaconess Shade Jacobs and Deaconess Jumoke Odulaja. The mass choir programme has now graduated into a Regional program and this was officially handed over by C.A.C Yaba Choir to Akinyele Region on the 15th of March 2020 with new robes for 300 choristers the cost of which was born by Pastor and Mrs. C. S. Fasuyi (The Director of Mission C.A.C Worldwide). The handing over service was presided over by the General Superintendent of C.A.C Worldwide Pastor S.O. Oladele supported by other principal officers of the church. To the Glory of God, the event was a huge success.



One of the many legacies laid by this choir was the purchase of a two-manual pipe organ from the N.P. Manders and company in London. This happens to be the first pipe organ in any C.A.C. Church both at home and abroad. The organ was dedicated in 1975. One notable sponsor of this project was the Late Pastor D.A. Coker. The choir with the support of the Church purchased a three-manual digital organ in the year 2006 and it is still in use till date.



The choir comprises of the main church choir, English Assembly choir and the teen church choir.


The choir in the early years was known for its regular performance during Easter period. Some of the notable performances by the choir since 1980 include:

* Daniel in the Lion's den by G. Pope Dopemu

* Oliver to Calvary by John Maunder

* Chandos Anthem volume VIII by G.F. Handel

* A Joyful Thanksgiving by Caleb Simper

 * Crucifixion by John Stainer

 * Hymn of Praise by Felix Mendelssohn


Also the choir has performed excerpts from the following books:

* Messiah by G.F. Handel

* Elijah by Felix Mendelssohn

* Israel in Egypt by G.F. Handel


The Choir has a subset called the Victory Voices Band which holds a programme titled "Halleluyah Nite" annually. This band in one of the editions of the Hallcluyah Nitc performed the work titled "Lift Him Up" by Ron Kenoly, arranged by Tom Brooks.

The Choir is one of the few Choirs in Lagos that moves with the recent trend in the music world, thereby appreciating modern composers like Vaughn Williams, John Rutter, William Mathias and so on and also performing their works. An example of this work include, "Let the people praise Thee 0 God" by William Mathias written for the Wedding ceremony of the Prince of Wales and Princess Diana in 1980.


Past and Present Secretaries of the Choir

 *Late Pastor 1.0. Siwoku

 * Late Elder Olu Olowoaro -Assisted by Bro. Bode Olajide and Bro. M.A. Fasak in

* Elder E.S.A. Jaiyesimi

* Bro. AlexanderAjayi Bambe

* Bro. Julius Akinbinu

* Bro. Tunde Magbagbeola - Assisted by Sis. Dupe Vincent & Sis. Dupe Jaiyesimi

* Bro. Lanre Oluyelu - Assisted by Sis. Jumoke Oliyide

* Bro. Segun Bashorun - Assisted by Sis. Omolayo Agboola

• Bro. Fatun.sin Akintunde - Assisted by Sis. Akinsola Abisola & Sis.Ajibade Itiola (Present Secretary)


Past and Present Choirmasters and Organists

 • Late Elder T.S. Okpe (Choirmaster and Organist)

* ElderAdegbolagun (Organist)

 * Late Pastor C.O.W.Awolaja (Choirmaster and Organist)

* Late Pastor M. OluAoko (Choirmaster)

* Late Elder M. Olu Owoaje (Choirmaster and Organist)

* Prince S.A. Adeosun (Assistant Choirmaster and Organist)

* Elder I.O. Ojo (Organist)

* F,Ider G. Pope Dopemu (Choirmaster and Organist)

* Elder S.K.O. Annan (Choirmaster and Organist)

* Bro. Scsan Taiwo (Assistant Choirmaster)

* Bro. Tolu Owoaje (Organist)

* Bro. V.A. Ajayi (Organist)

* Bro. Lekan Komaiya (Organist)

* Bro. TundeAkande (Organist)

* Bro. Seun Owoaje (Organist)

* Bro. Ayo Oluranti (Honorary Organist)

* Bro. Adejola Adeosun (Organist)

* Bro. AyoAjayi (Organist)

* Bro. Seye Popoola (Assistant Organist)


In conclusion, we use this opportunity to recognise the invaluable roles of our Founding father and past leaders for their spiritual, moral and financial contributions towards the establishment of the choir. Our utmost and sincere appreciation to all of them who are too numerous to mention. However, we particularly recognise all our past and present secretary, choirmasters, organists as listed above, and all our Aaron and Ur that have raised and continue to raise the hands of the choir. May the Lord bless your generation In Jesus Name.


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