Friday, January 22, 2016 11:50 am
Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State has described the late Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Samuel Odulana, Odugade I as an accomplished all-rounder who left an indelible footprint in the sands of time.
The governor, who extolled the late Olubadan during the official notification of his death by the Olubadan-in-Council, on Thursday, promised that the state government would give him a burial befitting of heroes and statesmen.
The Balogun of Ibadanland, High Chief Saliu Adetunji, had led members of the council, the leadership of the Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes (CCII) and princes and princesses of the late monarch to the Governor’s Office to formally inform the governor about the incident.
Ajimobi said that even if he had lived for another 100 years, his death would still have been painful to him and indeed, the sons and daughters of Ibadanland, considering what he called his exemplary, pious and disciplined life.
He said, “Kabiyesi was an accomplished man in all ramifications. He left an indelible footprint in the sands of times, having served this country in different capacities as a teacher, civil servant, a Second World War veteran, a minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and a parliamentarian of note. He was an irrepressible patriot, an Ibadan irredentist, a disciplinarian, a good father and an unstoppable democrat. He sees to the success of anything to which he was committed. He won an election as an independent candidate even when independent candidacy was not popular. A man of stoic character, consistent and Godly, he was a firm believer in the rule of law. If Baba had been in the saddle for another 10 years, he would have contributed to the campaign for cleanliness of Ibadan. He would never play the ostrich”.
Ajimobi added, “Kabiyesi was a nationalist and I am promising before you today that the state government under my leadership will give him a burial befitting of heroes and statesmen. On behalf of the government and the good people of Oyo State, I pray for the repose of Baba’s soul”.
The governor said he took solace in the fact that the late foremost traditional ruler lived an exemplary life.
Earlier, the Balogun had said that the High Chiefs and Kabiyesi’s children visited the governor to notify him of the passage of Oba Odulana whom they said joined his ancestors on Tuesday evening.
He said the Olubadan-in-Council would have loved to have the late monarch around for at least 10 more years but that they had succumbed to the supreme will of the Almighty, the giver and taker of life.
Otun Olubadan of Ibadanland, High Chief Lekan Balogun, however, presented a letter to the governor on behalf of the Olubadan-in-Council to formally inform him that Oba Odulana had joined his ancestors.
In another development, University of Ibadan, UI Vice Chancellor, Professor Abel Idowu Olayinka, also described the late Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Samuel Odulana, Odugade 1, as one of the University of Ibadan’s quintessential icons.
The late Olubadan was one of the natives who was instrumental to the release of the land on which the University of Ibadan was built to the colonial government.
The VC said the premier institution is eternally grateful to Oba Odulana for his wonderful contributions to the sustainable growth of the university in a statement by the University’s Director of Public Communication, Mr. Olatunji Oladejo.
“Right from the beginning, he showed tremendous interest in the activities of the institution and will remain one of the towering figures in the history of the University of Ibadan”, the VC stated.
Describing him as one of the pillars of modern Ibadan and Nigeria, he noted that “even when he was frail in health, he continued to encourage the enthronement of good governance in Nigeria through intellectual discourses and contributions.”
The UI VC recalled that it was in recognition of Kabiyesi’s invaluable contributions to all strata of education in Nigeria that the University honoured him with an honorary degree (LL.D) in 2010.
The VC further said, “Oba Odulana helped to build a generation of hardworking, decent and transparent Nigerians through his services in many capacities as a teacher, public administrator, soldier, politician, etc.”
“We are encouraged by the fact that he was an uncommon gift to the education family and humanity. His immense legacy will surely continue to be a guiding light to future generation”, Prof. Olayinka said.
The VC, on behalf of council, senate, congregation, management, staff and students of the University of Ibadan, commiserated with the Oyo State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi; National President, Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes (CCII), Chief Wole Akinwande and the good people of Ibadanland on the death of the great monarch.