Heritage Reporter

the preferred source for fresh top stories

Akeredolu’s body arrives Ondo, received by Aiyedatiwa

…Akeredolu, a courageous fighter – Ondo CJ

 

…Akeredolu, a committed nationalist – Tokunbo Kayode, Ex- AGF

 

 

Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa received the body of his late predecessor the late Ondo state governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, on Wednesday, on arrival at the governor’s office in Alagbaka, Akure, on behalf of the people of Ondo State.

 

Speaking during the short reception, governor Aiyedatiwa said: “With a heavy heart, I extend a warm welcome to all gathered here for this solemn occasion—the lying in state of the late Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu.

“Today, we come together to honour and celebrate the well-lived life of Governor Akeredolu, whose tireless dedication to the people of Ondo State resonates deeply within each of us.

“This session holds great significance as it marks the final place of work for our departed governor, where he served with unwavering passion, fairness, and equity, leaving behind a legacy that speaks volumes of his commitment to public service.

“In particular, we gather here today to offer our farewells to the late governor, a leader who understood the importance of valuing and rewarding the hard work of our state’s workers.

“As the biblical adage goes, ‘Workers deserve their wage,’ and Governor Akeredolu exemplified this principle by ensuring the payment of six months out of seven months of outstanding salaries owed to workers from the previous administration.

“Following in his footsteps, the remaining one month of outstanding salaries has been settled under my administration.

“Moreover, the impactful programmes initiated by Governor Akeredolu to improve the lives of our workers stand as a testament to his unwavering commitment to workers’ well-being.

“To the dedicated workers of Ondo State, today we bid farewell to not just a former leader and boss, but a champion of your rights and well-being.

“May the memory of Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu inspire us all to uphold his legacy of integrity, compassion, and service to the people of Ondo State.

Speaking at a Special Court Session held in honour of the late governor at the state high court in Akure, the Chief Judge of Ondo State, Justice Olusegun Odusola, described the former governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, as a courageous fighter.

Odusola said, “Arakunrin was a courageous fighter who faced the serious security challenges in the state with such ingenious courage that his approach has become a national model.

“He was amazingly down to earth, and this great asset is also his major weakness in a society where sycophancy is the order of the day. Whatever he promised to do, he would fight to accomplish.

“Akeredolu had a desire to build an ultra-modern facility for the High Court (and had started the journey), but could not do so partly because of his ill-health but largely because the individual who stood as the eye of the Executives in the administration of the judiciary could not interpret that dream.

“Expectedly, our new governor, His Excellency, Lucky Orimisan Aiyedatiwa, has reiterated his promise to bring Arakunrin’s dream to reality.

“It is a delight, to note that Arakunrin never interfered with judicial activities, even when it did not favour his desires.

“He would always tell us, “Milord, deliver your judgment in your true conscience; if I am not satisfied, I will appeal.”

“That is the man; we are all gathered here to bid farewell on his last journey. I am paying tribute to a man who understood the principles of separation of powers and lived it, not only in words, but in action.

“In my last encounter with him, at a time when his health was obviously failing, Arakunrin still reiterated his desire to construct a judiciary complex that will be the envy of other states in the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“He also spoke about judges’ welfare, and I wondered how a man in such a condition could still love the judiciary so much as to remember the little promises he made.

“I therefore pay homage to an outstanding legal icon and a political colossus. A man who was an exemplar of indefatigable courage, principled resistance, honesty, and self-respect.

Odusola added, “In the annals of Ondo State leadership, Arakunrin’s tenure will continue to be a good reference point.

In his tribute, former Attorney General of the Federation and Justice Minister, Adetokunbo Kayode, described the late governor of Ondo state, Rotimi Akeredolu, as a committed nationalist, “an Oodua to the core.

“Akeredolu showed that these two qualities were possible to hold together in the spirit of Awoism.

“Rotimi ‘Aketi’ Akeredolu was not only a respected leader, a quintessential Bar man and an accomplished individual.

“Aketi, his lifelong nickname, was easily and meritoriously honoured by this nation as a Commander of The Order of the Niger.

“A honour he very well deserved. A honour that captured his very essence. He was a Commander of men, and of ideas.

“By Ondo Yoruba standards, Aketi died a young man, below seventy years. But then we see that it is never how long, but how well.

“Within the time allotted to him by the Almighty, he achieved more than most who lived even up to eighty or more years.

“Aketi’s contributions to the legal profession, as a Senior Advicate of Nigeria (SAN), a Life Bencher, and his service first as Attorney-General of Ondo State and later as Governor of Ondo State, will be remembered and cherished.

“Having attained the rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Rotimi Akeredolu exemplified excellence and professionalism in the practice of law.

“He served as an inspiration for many aspiring lawyers and a role model for colleagues within the NBA.

“Rotimi Akeredolu SAN left a lasting impact on the legal profession through his dedicated service to the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA). As the 24th President of the NBA, he served NBA with commitment and integrity.

“His tireless efforts towards the advancement of the legal community were commendable. His expertise and guidance helped shape the legal profession.

“As Governor of Ondo State, Aketi made significant contributions to national security through the establishment of the Amotekun corps which was aimed at enhancing security and safeguarding the lives and properties of the people in the state, in the Southwest and in Nigeria.

“This initiative demonstrated his commitment to the well-being of the citizens and his proactive approach in addressing security challenges.

“His legacy in the field of national security will and must undoubtedly continue to inspire this and future generations.

“Aketi loved life and living. Which is just very well because life is a storm. An ephemeral storm. He never tried to calm the storm.

“Only Jesus could do that. He would rather calm himself as every storm must pass. Aketty’s storm has passed. He is calm where he is now.

“Aketi was not perfect. Only the Almighty God is. But he strove to do his best. Ultimately that is what matters most. And that’s the lesson we all must imbibe.

“So during this sorrowful time, I offer my deepest condolences to all of us, family, friends, and colleagues.

Kayode said “Let all of us find comfort in the legacy of Oluwarotimi “Aketi” Akeredolu. His service to Ondo state, Southwest Nigeria and Nigeria endures as a testament to his zest for life, his humanity, his dedication, his passion, and his outstanding contributions”.

Facebook Comments Box