The Oyo State Deputy Governor, Rauf Olaniyan, and a former governor as well as the Osi Olubadan, Rashidi Ladoja, family members, and hundreds of sympathizers to lay the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji, to rest amid eulogies from monarchs, politicians, business moguls and others describing the deceased traditional ruler as a symbol of unruffled dignity.
Others at the burial include former governor of the state, Otunba Adebayo Alao Akala, Fatai Buhari, a senator representing the state, Wasiu Ayinde popularly called KWAM1, Head of Service, Ololade Agboola, former and present President-Generals of Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes, CCI, Bayo Oyero and Yemisi Adeaga respectively.
Remains of the monarch, shrouded in white clothes, was laid to rest at the Popoyemoja palace on Sunday at about 5 pm in accordance with Islamic rites.
Before the deceased body was laid to rest, a lying-in-state was done at the Mapo Hall where a Janazah, Islamic prayers, was performed on the body by clerics.
While being brought back to the palace, dozens of Ibadan indigenes and visitors accompanied his remains to the palace where it was finally laid to rest.
Eulogizing the late monarch, Olaniyan said before he (Oba Adetunji) became the Olubadan, people had been tasting from his word of experience, from his philanthropic nature for more than 60 years.
He said: “Late Kabiesi had made a lot of people, “Oruko n ro Kabiyesi. You cannot meet him in a sad mood, you cannot meet him where he was angry. He was very happy, and was ready to transfer happiness to people.”
“We are going to miss him but we have no choice,we pray may God Almighty Allah provide a successor that will do more than him. As time goes on, we are going to unfold. Everybody knows that the deceased Olubadan was a blessing to Ibadanland and Oyo State.”
While commiserating the family of the deceased monarch and the Ibadan people, the Speaker of the state’s House of Assembly, Mr. Adebo Ogundoyin expressed shock over the death of the traditional ruler, describing the death as shocking and unbelievable.
He said in his statement: ” Just within the spate of one month, Oyo State lost three highly revered Obas to the cold hands of death. This is really shocking and unbelievable.
“First it was the Soun of Ogbomosoland, Oba Jimoh Oyewumi, Ajagungbade the third, second was the Asigangan of Igangan, Oba Lasisi Olawuyi Adeoyo and now the Olubadan of Ibadanland.
“I’ll like to commiserate with the good people of Ibadanland, and Oyo State in general on this sad incident in the new year. We have lost another highly successful businessman and a good father to us all.
“Our government has lost another very good friend and adviser. My heartfelt sympathies to the Oyo State Traditional Council of Obas and particularly to the Olubadan in Council for this great loss.
Ogundoyin stated that late Oba Adetunji was a principled and morally upright traditional ruler whose fatherly advice will be missed.
Olubadan’s death brought to four, the numbers of prominent Yoruba traditional rulers that had joined their ancestors in the last three weeks.
This is as 95-year-old Soun of Ogbomoso in Oyo State, Oba Jimoh Oyewumi Ajagungbade III, died on December 12; the Asigangan of Iganganland in Oyo State, Oba Abdul-Azeez Adewuyi Aribiyan II, also died on December 21.
The Gbiri Of Epinmi Akoko in Akoko South-East Local Government Area of Ondo State, Oba Ade Oyekan, also joined his ancestors on December 27 at 60.