Sunday 20 September 2015

HID Awolowo dies praying for her children

Awolowo, wife of the late sage, Chief Obafemi
Awolowo, died, yesterday, at 3:15 pm, two months
to her centenary birthday. She was said to have
passed on after she held a meeting with her family
members on the plan for her 100 years birthday.

Announcing the demise, her eldest child, Omotola
Oyediran, in a   statement she signed on behalf of
the family, said “mama died while praying for her
children over her planned   centenary birthday”.

The statement read: “Mama died as glorious as she
lived. She spent the day in the company of her
children,   grand children, great grand children and
close family. She shared a precious few minutes
with them when she went in to pray for them as
they met to plan her centenary birthday.

“They sang her a befitting song as she came in
and she continued to pray for them. She died a
couple of hours later as she had always wished to
be   surrounded by her children, grand children
and great grand children.”

The first callers to the Ikenne, Ogun State family
house of the Awolowos include Secretary to the
State Government, Mr. Taiwo Adeoluwa; the deputy
governor, Yetunde Onanuga; a former governor of
the state, Otunba Gbenga Daniel and Governor
Ibikunle Amosun’s wife, Olufunsho.
HID, once described by his late husband as his
Jewel of Inestimable Value, was born on November
25, 1915 in Ikenne.

A successful businesswoman
and astute politician, she was the First Lady of the old Western Region when Awolowo was Premier in
the First Republic. During the crisis in that political
dispensation, she stood in for her husband in the
alliance between the NCNC and the AG, called the
United Progressive Grand Alliance (UPGA), while he
was tried and jailed.

HID toured the country with her husband in the
Second Republic when Awolowo sought to be
President on the platform of Unity Party of Nigeria

She also coordinated the women’s wing of
the UPN. A businesswoman, she became the first
Nigerian distributor for the Nigerian Tobacco
Company (NTC) in 1957.

She was the first to import
lace materials and other textiles into Nigeria.
She is blessed with five children, 20 grand children
and 32 great grand children.
She was the Yeye Oodua of Yorubaland, bestowed
on her by the late Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade
Sijuwade, and a recipient of the national award of
the Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON).
HID was very close to her late husband who she on
an occasion described as a loving, caring and
affectionate partner, noting that he would continue
to be remembered for his uprightness.

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