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Tributes as Odumakin’s burial rites begin

Dignitaries from all walks of life attended the ceremony where tributes were paid on the late human rights activist who passed away on April 3,…

The burial rites for the late spokesman of Afenifere, the Pan-Yoruba sociocultural group, Mr. Yinka Odumakin, commenced Thursday with a lying-in-state and service of songs held in Lagos.

Dignitaries from all walks of life attended the ceremony where tributes were paid on the late human rights activist who passed away on April 3, 2021 after battling COVID-19 complications.

The lying-in-state was held at the Police College, Ikeja with Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Speaker House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, Afenifere Leader, Pa Ayo Adebanjo; former governors Peter Obi (Anambra), Olusegun Mimiko (Ondo) and Senator Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun), among others in attendance.

Pa Adebanjo broke into tears as he paid glowing tributes to Odumakin, describing him as “an irreplaceable material.”

“There is nothing impossible for God to do but as a human being, I will say it will be difficult to replace Yinka. Where can we find a young man of his age, not materialistic, pursuing a cause he believes in selflessly, courageously, relentlessly and consistently? Yinka, God knows you are a blessing to Nigeria,” he said.

Sanwo-Olu urged politicians and members of civil society organisations to uphold the legacy and struggle of late Odumakin.

He asked ‘comrades of like minds’ not to abruptly end what Yinka Odumakin believed, stood and worked for during his lifetime.

The governor also charged them to keep working hard for a Nigeria that will be land of justice, fairness and where equity would become the watchword and reflect true federalism.

Also speaking, the Speaker of the House of Representatives described him as “a man of courage, integrity, true democrat and a man who stood for truth and nothing else”

The speaker, therefore, charged Nigerians to make positive impact during their lifetime by rendering service to humanity so that they can be remembered after their death.

The widow of the late Afenifere spokesman, Dr. Joe Okei-Odumakin, who described her husband as an “encyclopedia of positive activism”, said the tributes by Nigerians will continue to embolden her to do more by continuing what her husband fought and stood for.”

She said a part of her had gone forever but added, “One thing that will never make me break down is that his ideals will live forever; his legacy will remain. All that he has lived for remain. Yinka, you are not dead; you are alive, you will continue to live in our unconsciousness. And to live in the unconsciousness of the people, is to live forever. Yinka Odumakin, my comrade lives on.”

 

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