Jonathan in Ikenne, eulogises HID

HID Awolowo

HID Awolowo

FORMER President Goodluck Jonathan and his wife, Patience, yesterday paid a condolence visit to the Awolowo family home in Ikenne to commiserate with the family over the death of their matriarch.

Jonathan said they had to break an earlier resolve to be off public glare in the next one year because the deceased was highly cherished by the nation’s former first family.

Accompanied by Otunba Gbenga Daniel and other Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftains, Jonathan said: “We, just like the immediate children, and indeed this country have missed her. “We are not mourning her today because mama lived well. For me, we believe that it is a rare privilege to add extra 29 years to the Biblical two scores and ten.”

Also, former Anambra State Governor Peter Obi has condoled with the family.

Obi, who is currently undergoing a leadership programme at the Institute for Management and Development (IMD) in Switzerland, reminded them that matters of life and death were the prerogative of the Almighty God over which “we shall accept His will.”

He, thus, prayed for the eternal repose of the departed.

Meanwhile, the Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE) who were among the numerous guests on Tuesday had suggested that their late Matron (deceased) be “embalmed alongside her husband”, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, on November 25 which would have been her 100th birthday.

The Council’s President, Gen. Adeyinka Adebayo, described Madam Awolowo as a fearless woman who had deep love for the Yoruba nation.

Senator Oluremi Tinubu, in her tribute, affirmed: “We have lost a woman of substance, an enigma, a woman of all seasons who touched virtually all spheres of life.

For Gani Adams, National Co-ordinator of the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC), he said: “God has already blessed her and she was left with children that will take care and carry on the Awolowo legacy. I know that the children are highly resourceful to carry on with the family legacy.”

Similarly, the Ife Traditional Council of Chiefs led by Oba Adeoye Adefarakan, Oloyere of Iyere Ife said: “The Ife Kingdom appreciates the contributions of Papa and Mama to the unity of Yorubaland. What we can say of Mama and Papa is that they contributed greatly to the development of Ife kingdom. This place (Ikenne) is the headquarters of Yorubaland in terms of politics and administration while Ife is the home of Yoruba.”

In the same vein, former Women’s Leader of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mrs. Josephine Anenih, in her tribute stated: “In our history books where we record Awolowo as the founding-father of Nigeria, I have never heard of the founding-mother. Mama H.I.D Awolowo is the founding-mother because throughout Papa’s struggles for the founding of Nigeria, Mama was solidly and consistently behind Papa.”

The roll call of Tuesday included Gen. Adeyinka Adebayo, Dr. Isaac Akintade, Chairman of Oodua Investment Group and Representatives of traditional rulers of Ife. Mrs. Akerele Bucknor, Ogun State House of Assembly, led by the Speaker, Suraj Adekunbi Ishola, wife of the Governor of Ogun State, Mrs. Olufunsho Amosun; Gen. Oladipupo Diya, Chief Titilayo Ajanaku, members of the Yoruba Unity Forum, Muslim clerics and Christian leaders.

However, the children of the late Chief Hannah Idowu Dideolu Awolowo have assured their friends, admirers and political associates that they would not disappoint them as they are determined to build and improve on the legacies left behind by their parents.

The eldest daughter of the Awolowos, Mrs. Omotola Oyediran who spoke while responding to various encomiums poured on her late mother by numerous guests who called at their Ikenne, Ogun State country home, said she was optimistic that one day, a “descendant” of the Awolowo family would become the President of Nigeria.

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