Wednesday, 20 January 2016

BREAKING NEWS: Olubadan dies in his sleep at 101

The Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Samuel
Odulana Odugade, is dead.
Palace sources said the monarch died
at about 7.30pm on Tuesday in his
palace in the Monatan area of
Ibadan.
Oba Odugade, who was born on
April 14, 1914, became the Olubadan
in July 2007.
It was gathered that palace guards
immediately summoned a son of the
deceased, Prof. Femi Lana, who also
informed some Ibadan high chiefs
about his father’s demise.
Though efforts to get the reaction of
Lana were futile on Tuesday, a
source close to him said the
monarch’s corpse had been
deposited at the morgue of an
unnamed hospital in Ibadan.
“I can tell you that Prof. Femi Lana
and some high chiefs have taken the
corpse to the mortuary but I will not
tell you the name of the hospital
because his death has not been
formally announced,” the source
said.
Another top source close to the
palace, however, said the Olubadan-
in-Council, comprising all the high
chiefs would have to first pay a
condolence visit to the family before
the formal announcement of the
monarch’s death would be made.
This, the palace source explained,
might be done on Wednesday (today)
, adding that the Olubadan-in-
Council or the family could formally
announce the death after the
condolence visit.
The source said, “The Olubadan is
dead. He died peacefully in his sleep
in his palace at Monatan and not in
the hospital around 7.30pm today
(Tuesday) due to old age. You know
he celebrated his 100th birthday in
April 2014; he would have clocked
102 this year. The palace chiefs
invited his son, Prof. Femi Lana, who
in turn, informed some high chiefs,
including the Ashipa of Ibadanland,
Chief Eddy Oyewole.”
Another high chief, who spoke on
condition of anonymity because he
was not allowed to comment
officially on the matter due to
tradition, said the monarch’s burial
might not be immediate.
“His burial may not be immediate.
He was not a Muslim but a strong
member of the St. Peter Anglican
Church, Aremo, and I’m sure that the
church, the Central Council of Ibadan
Indigenes and the Olubadan-in-
Council will participate in his
burial,” the chief said.
With his demise, the Balogun of
Ibadanland, Chief Saliu Adetunji, is
expected to be named as the new
Olubadan by the Olubadan-in-
Council.
Adetunji is one of the nine Ibadan
high chiefs promoted about three
weeks ago by the late monarch.
A soldier who fought in the World
War II, Oba Odulana was a seasoned
civil servant and a thoroughbred
politician who later became a
minister in the First Republic.
The late monarch began his
elementary education at Saint
Andrew’s School, Bamigbola, in the
present Lagelu Local Government
Area in January 1922 and obtained a
transfer to St. Peter’s School, Aremo
in 1929.
He completed his middle school
education at Mapo Central School in
December 1936.
He equally strengthened his
education via correspondence
college.
He had a brief stint with the United
Africa Company as a produce clerk
before taking up teaching at the
Church Missionary Society
Elementary School, Jago, in the
present Ona-ara Local Government
Area, in 1938.
He also taught in several schools
from 1939 to 1942.
He, however, quit teaching to pick
the more challenging duty of a
soldier during the 1939 World War
II.
According to his biographers, the
lessons learnt at his duty post was
well utilised, such that upon the end
of the war in 1945, he was put in
charge of the demobilisation of
returning soldiers in Lagos, which
earned him an exemplary character
award of the Army Fourth Brigade
and this climaxed into an immediate
appointment with the Colonial Office
Education Department in 1946.
While in the civil service, where he
was until 1959, Oba Odulana actively
assisted in the establishment of both
primary and secondary schools in
various parts of the old Western
Region of Nigeria.
He voluntarily retired and embraced
politics to represent his people in the
1959 pre-independence House of
Representatives.
This led to a string of political
achievements, such that he was
appointed as the Parliamentary
Secretary to the late Prime Minister,
Alhaji Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, in
the country’s first independent
cabinet.
In 1963, he attended the epoch-
making Commonwealth Conference
in London. He also became the
country’s Minister of State for
Labour.
In 1964, he led the Nigerian
Parliamentary delegation to the
London Constitutional Conference to
restructure the then British colonies
of Rhodesia and Nyasaland now
known as Malawi, Zimbabwe and
Zambia.
Odulana’s journey to the throne
started with his appointment as the
Mogaji (Head) of his Ladunni family
compound, at Oja-Igbo in 1972.
In 1976, he became the Jagun-
Olubadanland.

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