From Jimoh Ahmed & Ayodele Popoola
Arigidi Akoko youths yesterday held a joint procession to mourn the demise of T.B. Joshua describing him as a great loss to the town.
The youths under the umbrella of Arigidi Youth Congress and Akoko North West Youths came out enmass to honour the late Prophet and philanthropist with a walk throughout the ancient town.
During the procession, all the shops and markets were closed in honour of the late Prophet who in his life time brought succour to the needy.
Speaking with The Hope, the President of Akoko North West Youths’ Forum, Comrade Ola Mayowa, said the entire local government Youths would miss Prophet T.B Joshua whom they described as a critical pillar of the youths
“He is a critical Pillar to Akoko as a structure and the major focal point to Akoko youths. His death has left behind a vacuum in Akoko land that nobody could occupy for now. No doubt, Akoko land will miss the late man of God sorely and dearly.”
Also speaking, the Secretary of Arigidi Youth Congress, Comrade Folajimi Gbenga Adewumi, said T.B Joshua”s death is a great loss to them.
His words: “I was dismayed and could not believe it until I confirmed it. It is with great sadness that we, the entire Arigidi Youth Congress learnt of the passing on of Prophet TB Joshua. That is why we decided to devote the whole of today to honour our great son.
Meanwhile, Members of his family in Arigidi Akoko, told our reporter of their desire that the late founder of the Synagogue Church of All Nations, SCOAN, be laid to rest in his native town, hinted that they would soon hold a meeting in Lagos with his immediate family to discuss his burial arrangements , particularly his final resting place.
The Chief Imam of Agbaluku, Arigidi Akoko Central Mosque, Alhaji Salisu Musa who confirmed the arrangement said meeting was on to synergise with the wife, children and other top members of SCOAN.
According to those who spoke with our correspondent, it will be appropriate and appreciated if the late prophet could be allowed to sleep among his kinsmen.
They posited that the burial of TB Joshua in Arigidi will ensure that his various projects in the town are not abandoned.
The Zaki of Arigidi, Oba Yisa Olanipekun, who desired that the late prophet be buried in Arigidi, said it is the wish of the people of the town that the remains of the late prophet should be buried in Arigidi because of his love for them.
Oba Olanipekun said the people are already tied by a strong cord with the late T B Joshua and burying him miles away from his ancestral home will be like attempting to cut that cord.
According to the monarch, the founder of C and S Church, worldwide, Moses Tunolase Orimolade, who was an indigene of Ikare Akoko, was buried in a town in Ogun state, but his body was exhumed after 40 years and reburied at the present place in Ikare.
He said: “It is common place to bury clerics and prophets in their home towns, considering his love for the people. Arigidi Akoko should be his final home so that the love that binds him with his people will continue to radiate.
Other people were of the opinion that his legacies should be made to continue to manifest in Akoko land since it will take long for anyone to fill the vacuum created by his demise.
According to them, a man who bailed the entire Akoko residents from the four years blackout, by BEDC, bought security vehicles for police and army, did occasional distribution of food items to the people and provided succour to many, deserves to be buried in Akokoland.
A woman leader and the Iyalaje of Ikare Akoko, Alhaja Risikat Mohammed, said the venue of his ongoing multimillion naira housing project along Arigidi Okeagbe road will be very appropriate as the resting place for the servant of God.
Alhaja Risikatu posited that the burial of T B Joshua in Arigidi will ensure many of his ongoing projects are not abandoned.
She named some of such projects to include, the Synagogue University which has a Teaching Hospital, the Akoko Mega City as some of the important projects that may differ if the man is buried miles away from them.
While referring to Imeko in Ogun State, the hometown of late Oshofa which turmed later to ‘Mecca’ because of the annual pilgrimage by religious worshippers and tourists, the Iyalaje said Arigidi, Akoko and Ondo State will also tap from the tourist attractions.
On his own, the elder brother of the deceased, Mr Sunday Balogun,said it is the wish of the family members that the late prophet be buried in Arigidi.
Balogun said this will ensure he rests among his kinsmen and in his ancestral home.