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Emotions as notable politicians, professional colleagues, associates, family members honour Akeredolu

Torrent of Tributes were poured on the late Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, CON, as notable politicians, professional colleagues, church members, and other stakeholders gathered to honour him at the Evening of Tributes and Service of Songs.

The event held at the Jogor Centre in Ibadan on Monday, witnessed an emotional outpouring of heartfelt tributes for the late Akeredolu.

The expansive hall was filled to the brim as notable politicians, clergy, professionals, First Ladies, and other dignitaries came together to honour the late patriarch of the Akeredolu family.

Each speaker at the event eloquently described the late Akeredolu as a champion of the voiceless and a defender of the people of the Southwest region and the entire nation.

Distinguished guests in attendance at the Evening of Tributes and Service of Songs included Ondo State Governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa; Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Olamide Oladiji; Speaker of the Oyo State House of Assembly, Adebo Ogundoyin, and his wife; former Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. John Kayode Fayemi and his wife, Erelu Bisi Fayemi; Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Ade Adetimehin; members of the Ondo State House of Assembly; some members of the state Executive Council, and former members of the State Executive appointed by the late Akeredolu, led by former Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu.

The former Governor’s widow, Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, received special honour as First Ladies from across the country attended the event.

Notable among them were the wife of Kwara State Governor; Amb. Dr. Olufolake Abdulrazaq; wife of the Ekiti State Governor, Mrs. Olayemi Oyebanji, wife of the Lagos State Governor, Dr. Mrs. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu; Wife of the Bayelsa State Governor, Dr. Gloria Diri; Mrs. Titilola Adeleke, the Wife of the Osun State Governor; Alhaja Kafayat Oyetola, the wife of the former Osun State Governor and current Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, among others.

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Prominent governorship aspirants in Ondo State, Mr. Wale Akinterinwa, Chief Olusola Oke, SAN, and Mr. Gbenga Edema, were also present at the event.

Former Ekiti State Governor, Fayemi, paid tribute to the late Akeredolu, saluting his exceptional qualities in the political arena.

He said:”I witnessed his trials and triumphs up close. He was a dear friend, a trusted adviser, and a pillar. As a lawyer and politician, he achieved great success. But his greatest achievement lies in the countless lives he touched. He was the voice of the voiceless. As the chairman of the Southwest governors, he was the Commander-in-Chief in defending the defenseless people of the Southwest.

“His relentless advocacy for community policing has now gained widespread acceptance, transcending political affiliations. His greatest joy was serving the public good and building a united nation. He fearlessly spoke truth to power.”

In his brief message, Venerable Dr. S.F.O Jolayemi emphasised the lifelong commitment of the late Akeredolu to serving the Lord until the very end.

He described him as a man who was deeply loved and had a profound impact on many lives.

The cleric reminded the congregation that everyone has a date with death, stressing that no one can live for 200 years.

He urged people to live well and leave behind a positive legacy.

Other speakers at the event included a childhood friend of the late Governor for over 60 years, Dr. Charles ‘Diji Akinola; Sir Biyi Adesanya; former Special Adviser to the late Governor on Union Matters and Special Duties, Mr. Dare Aragbaiye; a family friend, Mr. Ayo Sotirin; a friend and professional colleague, Prof. Wole Akintayo; Head of Chambers, Olujimi & Akeredolu Legal, Mr. Ibrahim Lawal; a long-time staff member of 36 years, Mr. Samuel Iwalewa; a close friend and professional colleague, Justice Iyabo Yerima; an Aide-de-Camp and family friend, Mr. Tunji Alapini; a business associate, Mr. Kayode Falowo; Dr. Seye Oyeleye; the late Governor’s younger sister, Justice Bolaji Olajuwon; the first grandchild, Ayomide Akeredolu; and Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu Jnr., the first child.

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The funeral arrangements continue today with a Commendation Service at All Saints Church, Jericho, Ibadan.

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