Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has mourned the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III, who he described as a symbol of Nigeria’s epic struggle for self-discovery and self-actualisation.
He paid tributes to the late traditional ruler on Saturday in his letter of condolence to Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State.
Obasanjo, who is presently in Ethiopia, condoled with the governor, the family of Oba Adeyemi, and the entire people of Oyo on the transition.
He stated that the late highly revered monarch was a patriotic and respected traditional ruler who had immeasurable love for his people and great faith in a united Nigeria.
READ ALSO: Alaafin Of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, Is Dead
“He (Alaafin) 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,” the elder statesman was quoted as saying in a statement by his media aide, Kehinde Akinyemi.
According to him, it was during Oba Adeyemi’s reign that Oyo town got transformed into the modern city that it has become and 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 Nigerian and outside educational institutions.
Read the letter to Governor Makinde below:
April 23, 2022
Engr. Seyi Makinde,
Governor of Oyo State,
LETTER OF CONDOLENCE
On behalf of my family and on my own behalf, I write to convey our heartfelt condolences to you, to the good people of Oyo State and to the entire family of the late Alaafin, on the transition of His Royal Highness Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi, CFR, Alaafin of Oyo, at the age of 83.
I note, with delight, Oba Adeyemi’s immense contributions to peace, community development and growth and national development, especially since his ascension to the revered throne of Alaafin of Oyo, nearly 52 years ago. As a patriotic and highly respected traditional ruler who had immeasurable love for his people and great faith in a united Nigeria, he 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.