The eldest child and daughter of the Premier of Southwest Region, late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Reverend (Mrs) Tola Awolowo Oyediran, is dead.
Oyediran, the wife of Professor Kayode Oyediran, former Vice-Chancellor of University of Ibadan and an old boy of King’s College, Lagos died Friday without showing any symptoms of illness.
Like her late mother, Chief (Mrs) Hanah Dideolu Awolowo, who died about two months to her 100 years birthday, Oyediran also passed on yesterday two months away from her 80th birthday anniversary scheduled to hold on December 1.
Until her demise, Mrs. Oyediran was the Chairman, Board of Directors of African Newspapers of Nigeria (ANN), publishers of Tribune titles.
She was fondly known as Mama Ibadan. A family source said she did not show any sign of illness except for old age. “She was still hale and hearty till yesterday night,” the source said.
National leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu expressed sadness over the news of the passing of Mrs. Oyediran,
He said: “Mrs. Oyediran’s humble, amiable and graceful disposition endeared her to many of us. She represented the Awolowo family positively through her excellent moral conduct and shared her father’s welfarist political philosophy.
“As Chairman of the Board of Directors of Tribune Newspapers until her death, she helped take the Tribute titles to a new height through her emphasis on professionalism and integrity in all their editorial offerings.”
In a condolence message, Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere said it was devastated by the sad news of the demise of Oyediran, the eldest surviving child of its founder, Awolowo.
In a statement, Publicity Secretary of the group, Mr. Yinka Odumakin said, “Mrs Oyediran who would have been 80 few days away passed on yesterday when death broke into her abode suddenly without illness.”
Afenifere described the late cleric as a lovely person who radiated warmth and love to all in her lifetime.
“Her death is a big blow we have to accept as we cannot change the will of God. We can only pray for God to take good care of the family she left behind. Eternal repose we pray for her soul.”
In another condolence, General Secretary, Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE), Dr. Kunle Olajide said it was sad that Oyediran had to depart at a time like this when the country needs prayer of the saints and devoted servants of God.
The YCE scribe condoled with the Awolowo family, especially Dr Tokunbo Awolowo-Dosunmu, whom he said would be the only living direct child of Awolowo.
Olajide particularly commended Oyediran for her commitment to all activities that has to do with Nigeria and the Yoruba race her father once led.
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