The Department of Anatomy was established in 1982 as one of the departments in the faculty of Basic Medical Sciences in the Obafemi Awolowo College of Health Sciences. On Monday, 31 January, 1983 the first set of pre-medical students were admitted into the college. The college was sited at Ikenne and housed at the Ikenne Community High School and the Ikenne Community Hospital premises.
For a smooth take-off, the Anatomy complex was built and donated by the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo. The complex comprised of the HOD and the secretary offices, gross laboratory, lecture theatre, cadaver storage room, seven offices for academic staff and technologists and histology preparatory room. The complex was then commissioned on August 28 1980. The teaching of histology was done in a laboratory shared with Physiology department located at the Ikenne Community High School.
With the coming to power of the Millitary administration in Dec. of 1983, the Millitary Governor of Ogun state Brigader Oladipo Diya reversed the multi-campus system to unicampus system and the faculty of basic medical sciences which was the only faculty operating in the college at that time was moved to Ago- Iwoye mini-campus. The Anatomy complex built in Ago-Iwoye by the state government was commissioned by the millitary head of state Major General Muhammadu Buhari on 13th March, 1985.
In pursuit of academic excellence, the department was licensed by the Ministry of Health and Justice to practice Anatomy which authorized the department to collect cadavers from hospitals and prison for the purpose of medical education dissection in 1986.
In 2002, Ogun state government revisited the unicampus system policy and reversed to the multicampus system as originally put in place by the founding fathers of the university at inception. Consequently the Ikenne Development Association (IDA) set up a community committee to effect the return of the college to Ikenne. Later in the year, the departments moved to Ago-Iwoye were relocated to the present site housing the Faculty.
The following Ikenne indigenes donated buildings for the department:
- Otunba and Chief (Mrs) Dipo Orepitan – Anatomy Office Complex and two lecture rooms with toilet facilities for both staff and students.
- Otunba Idowu Adenuga – The histology laboratory complex
- The Gross laboratory complex was built to the lintel level by Mr Yomi Obafemi before the university management considered the pace as too slow and opted to complete the roofing, pastering, painting and the electrification.
- The opening gallery in the middle of the office complex was also converted to the Museum by Professor A. B. Ejiwunmi’s led Committee.
The Department was initially conceived to service the needs of the medical degree programme, however, in July 2005, the Faculty of basic medical sciences mounted its first undergraduate programme Bachelor of Medical Sciences (B. Med. Sc) Hons. in which the department of anatomy was intended to award a degree in B. Med. Sc. With option in Anatomy. The programme was however restructured to B.Sc (Hons) Anatomy. Later in 2006, the University Senate in its wisdom approved higher degrees M.Sc., M.phil. and Ph.D. for the Department
It is worth mentioning that Dr. P.O. Ogunnaike was the first Head of Department in 1982 to 1984 and was succeeded by Prof. A.B. Ejiwunmi who headed the Department for many years.