Monday, May 29

Tinubu, Makinde Obaseki and other Flood’s of tributes as late Oba Adeyemi is laid to rest

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President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday hailed the late Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi (III), for what he called the deceased’s immense contributions to national development.

He particularly acknowledged Oba Adeyemi’s roles in “national meetings and conferences to shape the future of the country, and the living words of wisdom he shared at every opportunity on unity and people-focused governance.”

Similar condolence messages came from former President Olusegun Obasanjo, National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, state governors and traditional rulers.

Besides, thousands of mourners besieged the Alaafin’s Palace in Oyo to pay their last respects to the Oba while others went on social media, eulogising him as a great promoter and defender of Yoruba culture.

Buhari, in a statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, said Oba Adeyemi’s reign covered major historic transitions in the country, and witnessed transformations in his domain.

“The President affirms that the Alaafin of Oyo’s 52 years rule was remarkable in many ways. Most significant was the emphasis he placed on human development, thereby encouraging learning as a culture and formal education as a necessity while promoting values of peace and stability.”

He said he shared the grief with the Oyo State Traditional Council, Oba Lamidi’s family, friends, and associates, particularly in sports where he left another footprint and prayed that the Almighty God would receive his soul.

Tinubu: A big Iroko has fallen

Tinubu, in his own tribute, said the late Alaafin “fostered harmony and brought prosperity and development to the ancient Oyo Kingdom. He was loved by his people.”

“Wisely ruling on the throne for 52 years, he became the longest reigning Alaafin that ever ruled Oyo Kingdom.

“With his transition, a big Iroko has fallen. His passing was an auspicious era in the ancient Oyo Kingdom, but also for the Yoruba and the entirety of the black race,” Tinubu said.

He added: “An elder statesman and patriot, Alaafin Adeyemi was bold and courageous. He spoke truth to power.

“His interventions in national affairs helped the nation navigate difficult moments and helped usher a more just society.

“He played vital roles in the struggle for democracy, working assiduously towards the establishment of our democracy.

“In recognition of his important contributions to peace, religious harmony and stability in Nigeria, the nation gifted him the high honour of Commander of the Federal Republic.

“Alaafin was also a strong pillar of the arts, culture and tradition.

“Kabiyesi took upon himself the task of promoting Nigerian arts and culture for which he received many ambassadorial awards in Nigeria and beyond.”

He spoke of what he called his abiding personal relationship with Oba Adeyemi, and described him as a mentor, leader and father figure.

He recalled visiting the deceased two months ago at his palace in Oyo to “seek his prayers and blessings which he graciously gave. Little did I know it was the last time we would see each other face to face.”

He prayed for the repose of the soul of the departed traditional ruler.

Yoruba have lost a great ruler, worthy father – Makinde

Oyo State governor ‘Seyi Makinde called the death of the Alaafin “a huge loss to the state, Nigeria and the Yoruba race.”

He said the demise of the Oba was a personal loss to him, as he was “an ever-supportive royal father and a worthy leader who spared nothing in trying to make Oyo State and Nigeria greater”.

Continuing, he said: “Kabiyesi’s departure is a huge loss not only to Oyo State to which he committed 52 years of his life as the Alaafin of Oyo Kingdom, but also to Nigeria and the entire Yoruba race.”

According to him, Oba Adeyemi was our last man standing in the rank of most eminent royal fathers with long years of leadership.

“He became a golden king, an institution and an authority rolled into one by virtue of his immense experience, wisdom and understanding of Yoruba history, royalty and politics.

“Oba Adeyemi not only elevated the Alaafin throne with his knowledge and wisdom, he became a worthy exemplar for royal leadership in Africa and brought glory to Oyo State and Nigeria.

“Kabiyesi never spared anything in his strive to make Oyo State greater and to bring about the Nigeria of everyone’s collective dream.

“Personally, Kabiyesi’s death is a great loss to me, because he proved to be a worthy father and had been ever so supportive of our government.”

He left an enduring legacy – Sanwoolu

Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu said the late Oba Adeyemi’s service to the people of Oyo town, Oyo State and Nigeria as a whole, especially in the area of promotion of Yoruba culture and tradition, will remain his enduring legacy.

He said: “The death of Oba Adeyemi is a great loss not only to the people of Oyo State but the entire Yoruba sons and daughters at home and in the diaspora because of the unique position the Alaafin of Oyo holds as a descendant of Oduduwa. He will be greatly missed.

“He was one of the great promoters of Yoruba culture and tradition. He contributed immensely to the growth and development of Oyo Kingdom and improved the livelihood of the people of the town.

“As a first-class monarch, he left a lasting legacy that the people of Oyo ancient town will continue to cherish.”

He urged the family, friends and associates of the deceased as well as the entire people of Oyo Kingdom to work towards immortalising him and ensuring that his legacies are sustained.

Akeredolu: He was a quintessential traditional ruler

Chairman, Southwest Governors’ Forum and Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, said: “We have lost a quintessential traditional ruler and custodian of the Yoruba culture. His contributions to the development and advancement of the country and Yoruba land in particular are unquantifiable.

“He was a great pillar; a great giant who did not only represent our cultural values but also preserved and promoted the Yoruba culture. He was a repository of knowledge.

“With over five decades on the throne of his fathers, Oba Lamidi III was the longest-reigning Alaafin whose reign has been the most remarkable for the entire Oyo Kingdom.

“His commitment toward ensuring the unity of the Yoruba cannot be forgotten in a hurry. He lived a life invariably imbued with candour and resplendence. He was royal to the end.”

He was an exemplar of our culture – Abiodun

For Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State, Oba Adeyemi was a shining “custodian and exemplar of Yoruba culture and tradition.”

He said posterity and history would remember the service and dedication of the deceased to Yorubaland, and his immense contributions to ensure peace and unity in the country.

“It is unfortunate that Kabiyesi had to take his leave of us at this period when we need his wisdom the most as we approach the 2023 general elections; a critical period in our political landmarks,”   he said.

Obaseki: He was kind, brave, cheerful

Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State said of him: “Brave and cheerful, Oba Adeyemi embodied the ideals of the Yoruba nation, promoting the rich culture and heritage of the Yoruba and providing wise counsel to those who sought guidance from the throne.

“During his over 50-year spell on the throne, Oyo witnessed numerous transformations and transitions, but he remained true to his heritage and harped on the need for brotherly love and conscientious living.

“He will be remembered for his kind nature, conviviality, wisdom and love for humanity and living.”

His influence transcended Oyo, says Okowa

Delta State governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, said the late monarch’s 52 years reign recorded remarkable peace and tremendous development in his domain.

“He will be remembered for his contributions to the peace, unity and development of his kingdom and the entire Oyo State,” Okowa stated.

He urged the family of the deceased royal father, friends, associates and the people of Oyo to take solace in the knowledge that the monarch lived an exemplary life and was a great voice on national issues.

He prayed that Almighty God would grant the soul of the departed monarch eternal rest.

Oyetola: It’s shocking

Osun State Governor Adegboyega Oyetola said he was shocked by the demise of the Alaafin of Oyo.

The Governor said: “I received with sadness news of the transition of Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III. This is a huge loss to the entire Yoruba race and the country as a whole.

“On behalf of the government and the good people of Osun, I commiserate with Governor Seyi Makinde, the royal family, subjects, friends and associates of the late traditional ruler.

“Oba Adeyemi was a visionary and an exemplary leader whose 52-year reign brought tremendous attention, peace, stability and unprecedented development to the ancient Oyo town and its people.

“Baba was a strong believer in progressive ideals, and he remained true to his convictions over the years until he breathed his last.

“He will be long remembered for his impacts, achievements, outstanding legacies and remarkable service as a custodian of the rich Yoruba cultural heritage and traditions.

“I pray Allah overlook his shortcomings and admit him to Al Jannah Firdaus. May He also grant his immediate family, Governor Makinde and the entire people of Oyo State the fortitude to bear his loss.”

Gbajabiamila saddened by Alaafin’s demise

House of Representatives Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila described the passing away of the Alaafin as a sad development that touched him personally.

Gbajabiamila, who was recently conferred with the title of Aare Baasofin of Yoruba Land by the late Alaafin, said the death of the traditional ruler has created a void too difficult to fill.

He described the deceased as a very intelligent father with a sound grasp of traditional, social, political and international history, as well as a man of peace whose five decades of quality leadership to his people endeared him to the masses.

He said the Alaafin would be sorely missed by him and all Nigerians, especially the Yoruba people, as he served as a father figure to all, giving wise counsel when needed.

He recalled how the late Oba supported the political career of many Nigerian leaders, especially his own (Gbajabiamila’s) journey to the position of Speaker.

He was a symbol of Nigeria’s epic struggle in self discovery, self-actualisation – Obasanjo

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, in his own tribute, said: “Alaafin Oba Adeyemi stood out as a voice of forthrightness in national affairs and he was as well a fervent promoter of mutual tolerance and understanding not only among the diverse people who live in his domain but also across the country.

“It is well acknowledged that it was during his reign that Oyo town got transformed to the modern city that it has become today and not surprisingly, his contribution to nation-building was also acknowledged in the conferment of the esteemed national honour of Commander of the Federal Republic, CFR, on him, and other honorary degrees that he received from some Nigerian and outside educational institutions.

“Like most great leaders, Alaafin was all things to all people. To his family, he was a tower of strength and a committed provider; to his community of Oyo land, he was an early model in national leadership; to his Yoruba kinsmen, he was a worthy Ambassador; and to the rest of Nigeria, he was a symbol of a nation’s epic struggle in self discovery and self-actualisation.

“Although Oba Adeyemi’s passage is like a dream, especially as he left us at a crucial state in our nation’s history when his wise counsel and rich experience are greatly needed, I would urge you and all the members of his immediate and extended family to take solace in the worthy legacy and his mark on the history of this country he left behind.  In fact, we ought to give gratitude to God for his worthy life.

“May God grant his family, the good people of Oyo land and the entire Oyo State the grace to bear the heavy loss of his death. May the soul of the dear departed rest in perfect peace.”

It’s end of a remarkable, glorious era – Olubadan

The Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Lekan Balogun, Alli Okunmade II, said the death of Oba Lamidi Adeyemi signified the end of a remarkable and glorious era.

The Olubadan, who expressed shock at the news of the death of the Oyo traditional ruler, recalled that the late Adeyemi personally attended his coronation/installation last month.

He described the late traditional ruler as “a royal father per excellence, who projected Yoruba culture and civilisation with awe and dignity”.

According to him, with his exit, Yoruba has lost a rare gem.

It’s a colossal loss, says Emir of Ilorin

The Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari, said Oba Adeyemi’s departure was not only a colossal loss to traditional institutions in the nation but the end of another era.

The world, he said, would “surely miss the exit of a bridge builder.”

“The late Oba Adeyemi III used his long reign and old age to foster unity among the Yoruba race,” he said.

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