By Adekola Afolabi
The members of family of Akeredolu on Sunday rounded off the burial arrangements for their late mother, Lady Evangelist Grace Bosede Akeredolu with special Thanksgiving Service held at the Cathedral Church of St Andrew’s, Imola, Owo.
Also in attendance at the special Thanksgiving Service were wife of the Governor, Mrs Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu; the deputy Governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, members of the State Executive Council led by the Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu; other top government functionaries, among other dignitaries.
In his sermon titled “Prayer for Safety”, the Bishop of Owo Anglican Diocese, Rt. Rev (Dr.) Stephen Fagbemi, said it is only God that preserves His people in the midst of troubles and challenges of life.
He admonished christians to stand firm in the Lord and have absolute trust in Him, assuring that they are already under the cover of God Almighty, and that they will not be cast away.
The Bishop encouraged them to hold on to the promises of God without looking back.
Earlier, at the Funeral Service held on Saturday at the same church, the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo and the Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 general elections, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, among several other eminent personalities joined Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu and his siblings to bid the late mother farewell.
Other dignitaries at the Funeral Service on Saturday included wife of Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, Mrs Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu; South West Governors including Governor of Ogun State, Prince Dapo Abiodun; Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu; Governor of Osun State, Gboyega Oyetola and Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, represented by his wife, Olufunke.
Also in attendance were former Governor of Ekiti state, Dr Kayode Fayemi and wife, Bisi; Ministers including Minister of Youth and Sports, Sunday Dare; Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Olorunnimbe Mamora; members of the National Assembly; Ondo State deputy Governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa and wife, Oluwaseun; members of the State Executive Council led by the Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni; members of Ondo State House of Assembly led by the Speaker, Bamidele Oleyelogun; former Governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko; former Governor of Ogun state, Ibikunle Amosun; several Bishops both serving and retired; serving and retired Justices; Heads of security agencies in the state; Afenifere leaders including Basorun Seinde Arogbofa; DG DAWN Commission, Seye Oyeleye; members of the Bar and the Bench; captains of industry; political associates; technocrats; Chief Akin Olujimi, SAN; Chief Bisi Akande; Titi Laoye-Tomori, representatives of traditional rulers; senator Iyiola Omisore; Chief Femi Falana, SAN, among several dignitaries.
Late Lady Evangelist Grace Bosede Akeredolu was later interred at the Church cemetery beside her husband in Owo, the hometown of the Governor.
… As personalities throng Owo
For the second time in a week, Owo, the home town of Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu stood still for hours as prominent important personalities thronged the ancient town for the burial of the governor’s mother, Lady Evangelist Grace Abosede Akeredolu.
The Vice-President, Yemi Osinbajo who represented the Federal Government at the ceremony praised lady Akeredolu for bringing up seven children, four of whom were boys.
He described her efforts at raising the children as heroic and laudable, congratulating the Akeredolus for surviving their mother.
“Today is a day of great joy. We have reached where we must celebrate one of the greatest legacies. It is a time to celebrate Mama because of the great deeds. The life of Mama Grace Akeredolu was a life worthy of celebration. She lost her husband at the age of 50, and lived up to 90. She brought up all her seven children. She made a great effort at raising four boys.
“She did very well indeed. We must thank God because not only did she bring up her children well but all of them are successful. What we must celebrate most is her service to God and mankind. We celebrate the life of a great woman, a woman who served God well and her community”, Osinbajo stressed.
The first child of the nonagenarian and governor of Ondo State, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, appreciated the who’s who at the event including Prof Yemi Osinbajo, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, South West Governors and other dignitaries for honouring them with their presence.
Guests were later treated to both local and continental dishes at Mydas Hotel and Resort, Ikare road, Owo, where there were more than enough to eat and take home.