The atmosphere at Ikenne, the country-home of the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo became a Mecca of sorts at the weekend as all roads leading to the serene community in Ogun state now wore a new look.
ENCOMIUM Weekly can reliably inform that the final journey home of the chairman/co-founder of the African Newspapers of Nigeria (ANN) and the matriarch of the Awolowo dynasty, Chief (Mrs.) Hannah Idowu Dideolu Awolowo, began in grand style on Sunday, November 15, 2015.
HID Awolowo’s final burial activities started on a colourful note at her Ikenne home as early as 7.00am Sunday, November 15, 2015, when family members and well-wishers were gaily dressed ready for the journey to Lagos.
To add glamour to the burial rites, a ceremonial police colour parade Land Rover jeep, with Ogun State and coat of arms as it’s number plate, was also on ground to convey her remains to all the places lined up in the burial programme.
The surviving children of the Yeye Oodua, Reverend (Mrs.) Omotola Oyediran and Dr (Mrs.) Olatokunbo Awolowo Dosumu, were on ground to ensure a hitch-free journey and a successful take-off of the burial programmes.
Members of the Federal Road Safety Corps and officers of the Nigeria Police were also sighted.
At about 8.10 a.m, a short service was conducted by the priests from the Diocese of Remo (Anglican Communion), before the journey began.
ENCOMIUM Weekly also observed large presence of residents of Ikenne township and neighbouring communities who trooped out from their homes, especially those attending Sunday services and Asalatu (Muslim prayers),to behold the ceremonial jeep prepared to convey the remains of Mama Awolowo.
Some were extremely excited as they waved at the long convoy that passed through Yeye Oodua Street to Awolowo Avenue enroute Lagos.
At about 10.35 a.m, the remains of Mama Awolowo, dressed in a while lace material with gold damask as headgear and silver accessories to match were brought out by pall bearers with funfare.
Also, an all gold plated casket was wheeled out to the spectacle of those present.
The atmosphere was frenetic as the deceased’s children, family members and other well-wishers danced joyfully to celebrate Mama.
The pall bearers from TOS Funerals and their band added spice as they provided melodious tunes, most especially tracks from various records of juju maestro, Chief Commander Ebenezer Obey-Fabiyi, which Mama enjoyed most.
A long convoy made up of state of the art cars conveying the children, family members, well-wishers and representatives of Ogun State government departed to Park Lane, Apapa, Lagos, for lying-in-state and inter-denominational service.
Different staff of office of the Akarigbo and Paramount Ruler of Remoland, Oba Adeniyi Sonariwo, the Alakenne of Ikenne Remo, Oba Adeyinka Onakade and other notable traditional rulers across Remoland were also on display.