Organizing for Lanre Banjo

Govs, ACN chiefs, others in Ikenne for Awolowo

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Eminent personalities in the country have continued to condole with the matriarch of the Awolowo dynasty, Chief (Mrs) HID Awolowo, over the death of her son and Publisher/Vice-Chairman of the African Newspapers of Nigeria (ANN) Plc, Chief Oluwole Awolowo. Those who visited the family’s residence in Ikenne, Ogun State, on Friday, included governors of Ondo and Ekiti states, Dr Olusegun Mimiko and Dr Kayode Fayemi. Former governors of Ogun, Osun and Lagos states, Chief Olusegun Osoba, Chief Bisi Akande and Senator Bola Tinubu, also visited the family.

Mimiko, who signed the condolence register opened by the family in honour of the deceased, said the death was a great loss. “Uncle Wole was a gentleman. He came from a noble source and he comported himself to the best of the tradition of the Awolowo family. His death is a big loss to not only the family, nuclear and extended, but also the political family and journalism.
“We take consolation in the fact that he served the Lord to the end. We pray that the Lord will uphold the family he left behind, especially Mama.
May his soul rest in peace,” he said.
Governor Fayemi was accompanied to the home of the Awolowos by Senator Babafemi Ojudu (Ekiti Central), Commissioner for Culture, Arts and Tourism, Chief Ronke Okusanya and the Special Adviser on MDG, Mrs Bunmi Dipo-Salami.
He said the deceased was an embodiment of humility, courage and service to humanity, adding that he was never overwhelmed by the pressure of difficult times.
“Uncle Wole was born by a great family and he lived a great life,” Fayemi added.
Governor Fayemi said Awolowo emulated his father, the sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, in seeking the progress and betterment of the society.
He urged the children of the deceased to take heart and build on the legacy of their father.
Osoba wrote in the condolence register that: “Unbreakable Wole, you were unbreakable in your faith in God. You were unbreakable in your evangelical mission. We shall miss you, our own Unbreakable.”
Tinubu said: “Egbon Wole, you are brilliant and humane. You lived a fulfilled life and impacted on many lives. We surrender to the Almighty because death is the end of all men.
“No doubt, you left unforgettable marks and we all shall miss you. Rest in perfect peace.”
Also speaking during the visit, the National Chairman, Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Chief Akande, described the death of the Tribune publisher as painful.
Akande said: “The death of Oluwole is a very painful one. We pray to God to forgive, accept him and preserve all that he left behind.
“His death is a sad loss to my generation. May the Lord God console the family and Nigerians at this sad moment.”
The Chairman, Honeywell Group of Companies, Mr Oba Otudeko, in his tribute, said the death of Chief Awolowo was painful.
“This is God at work because as Christians, this is not what we wish. The deceased lived a life that justifies his birth to the noble family. It is a painful thing that he has to leave when Mama is still very much around,” Otudeko said.
A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Osun State, Chief Abiola Ogundokun, in his tribute, described Chief Awolowo as a gentleman and an embodiment of humility and discipline.
“Wole, it is so sad missing a wonderful you at this prime age. You are a valuable colleague in our days at the Constitutional Conference of Abacha in 1994 and beyond. You have given your best and the Lord will crown your effort,” Ogundokun wrote.
Other dignitaries that visited the family were the Aare Musulumi of Yorubaland, Alhaji AbdulAzeez Arisekola-Alao, Chief Niyi Adegbenro, Chief Idowu Sofola (SAN), Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye, Chief Ayo Opadokun and Mrs. Abba Folawiyo.
ACN commiserates with family
The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has extended its condolences to the Awolowo family over the death of Chief Oluwole Awolowo.
In a statement issued in Lagos by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said it received the news of Chief Awolowo’s death with shock and sadness and prayed God to grant him eternal rest and comfort those he left behind.
The ACN commended Chief Awolowo’s contributions to deepening freedom of speech which, it said, is a key ingredient of democracy, through his efforts in sustaining one of the country’s oldest surviving newspapers, the Tribune.
“Sustaining the rich legacy of the Tribune, which was founded by the sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, is a remarkable achievement, especially at a time that the newspaper publishing industry is facing great challenges, including from the so-called New Media.
“It is, therefore, to Chief Oluwole Awolowo’s credit, as the publisher of the irrepressible Tribune for many years, that he ensured the paper has continued to wax stronger and stronger,’’ ACN said.
His death, a blow to South-West, Nigeria —Aregbesola
GOVERNOR of Osun State, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, has joined well-meaning Nigerians in mourning the passing of the scion of Awolowo family, Chief Oluwole Awolowo.
Aregbesola said the death of the surviving son of the sage was a blow to not only the immediate family, but also the entire Awolowo political dynasty, South-West and the nation as a whole.
In a statement issued by the Director, Bureau of Communications and Strategy, Office of the Governor, Mr Semiu Okanlawon, Aregbesola said the death of Chief Awolowo came as a shock.
He said until his last breath, Awolowo proved that he was a successful businessman, administrator and leader of people.
“During his lifetime, Chief Oluwole Awolowo was a shrewd businessman who excelled in that calling; astute administrator, a devout family man and a firm believer in selfless service to his people.
“He was a rallying point in the dynasty of the sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo.
“For many years after the departure of Chief Obafemi Awolowo, he had remained a pillar of strength to Mrs HID Awolowo, performing, so to speak, the role of son and father figure to the matriarch.
“On behalf of myself, government and the people of the State of Osun, I offer our heartfelt condolences to the entire Awolowo family, government and people of Ogun State, the Tribune titles’ management, Awolowo political family, South-West and Nigeria as a whole,” the statement said.
It’s painful —Obada
MINISTER of State for Defence, Chief (Mrs) Olusola Obada, has described the death of the Publisher/Vice Chairman of the African Newspapers of Nigeria (ANN) Plc, Chief Oluwole Awolowo, as a painful exit.
Obada, in a condolence message to the family of the sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, the Ogun State government and the ANN Plc management, said though Awolowo had been sick, his death was sad.
The minister, in a statement by her media assistant, Femi Adefila, said the evangelist was an erudite administrator who piloted the affairs of the Tribune newspapers well and lived a godly life with love and passion for humanity.
“Awolowo’s death, nonetheless his ailment, is sad. The loss became more painful by the fact that the family was yet to fully recover from the death of his sister, Mrs Ayodele Soyode, who passed on not too long ago.
“He was a courageous and outspoken Nigerian. I recall with nostalgia the tenacity of purpose portrayed by Chief Awolowo. He never discriminated against friends, workers and even relations. When the mantle of leadership fell on his shoulder, he accepted it courageously and made indelible mark.
“That Chief Oluwole Awolowo played a leading role in the affairs of the prominent Awolowo family, especially since the translation of Papa Awolowo, is never in doubt. He was a genuine leader and a natural gentleman,” Obada said.
We’ve lost a fine gentleman —Akinfenwa
By Taiwo Adisa- Abuja
National Chairman of the Alliance for Democracy (AD), Senator Mojisoluwa Akinfemwa, has described as a huge loss, the death of Chief Oluwole Awolowo, the publisher of Tribune titles.
Senator Akinfemwa, in a condolence message to the Awolowo family, said that his heart stayed with the matriarch of the family, Chief HID Awolowo who, he said, is going through unimaginable pain at this time.
He said that the loss of Chief Awolowo was painful not just to Yoruba people across the South-West, but to Nigerians from different backgrounds who have come across this “amiable young man.”
According to him, though the loss looked unbearable, the Lord would provide succour for the family at this time of grief.
He stated that the death was particularly painful as Chief Awolowo died when many Yoruba sons and daughters were expecting him to fully recover from the sickbed so that he could contribute his own quota to the much-talked-about Yoruba unity and emancipation.
“We are pained at the loss of this fine gentleman, who contributed immensely to the growth of the media industry by sustaining the legacy of the Tribune newspapers planted by his illustrious father, the sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo.
“he will be sorely missed by the church, his community and Nigerians in general since he had established himself as a philanthropist and humanist who also contributed to the growth of the church.
“My prayer is that the Lord will grant Mama and his siblings the fortitude to bear this weighty loss, just as one will also pray for God to grant him eternal rest,” Akinfemwa said.
Globacom mourns
TELECOMS giant, Globacom, in a condolence letter signed by its Regional Director (West Africa), Marketing Communications, Mr Charles Jenarius, said it was pained by the death of Chief Oluwole Awolowo.
“We received with great shock the death of Chief Oluwole Awolowo, 70, Chairman of African Newspapers of Nigeria Plc, publishers of Nigerian Tribune in London on Wednesday night.
“We are particularly pained by his death at this time when he should be savouring the fruit of his efforts in putting the Nigerian Tribune titles back on the competitive map of Nigerian print journalism. From his biography, it is sad that we will miss such a “kind, considerate, compassionate and diligent” scion of the popular Awolowo Dynasty. Oluwole was described as a “meek, gentle, and patriotic Nigerian whose love for his fellow beings transcended the frontiers of tribe, creed and race.”
“We commiserate with the entire Awolowo family and the Board and Management of Nigerian Tribune. We however urge you to be consoled by the fact that Oluwole lived a good life as a devout Christian who, in spite of his tight schedules, used the pages of Nigerian Tribune to preach the faith.
The true challenge for his immediate and extended families is to continue to keep his memory alive in the true reflection of his values.
“On behalf of our Chairman, Dr. Mike Adenuga jnr (GCON) and the Globacom family, we pray Almighty God to give you and the entire Awolowo family the strength to bear the irreparable loss, and grant his soul eternal rest.
Please accept our deepest sympathy,” Globacom said.
His belief in God was infectious —Ex-commissioner
Reacting, Chief Josephine Olatimi Suboyejo, a former Commissioner in Ogun State, said: “Chief Oluwole Awolowo has given himself the greatest ‘Tribute’ before his transition in his Memoirs at 70 (page 127) of one of his published books.
“Ever since his auto-crash, death to him is a means of transportation to meet his Lord Jesus Christ. Our paths crossed when I joined UPN in 1978 and became closer in 1979. He contested and won Apapa Lagos State Assembly seat while I contested and won Ikeja Federal House of Representatives seat.
“Though, his father, the great sage was the leader of our party, UPN; you cannot discern this from his carriage. He put on no airs of extra importance but mingled as one of us.
“In 2009, I was on a visit to Ikenne to see Chief (Mrs) Awolowo, I met him and he took me around, showing me the car that nearly killed him. He has preserved the car as in a museum. He told me of his solid ‘faith’ in Jesus Christ and his determination to serve him as a useful tool in His sanctuary; proclaiming Him and wining souls for Christ.”
It’s too much to bear —Sokoyokoto
In his reaction, Chief Jide Oshunubi also known as Sokoyokoto who was a friend of Chief Oluwole Awolowo said he was really sad because they had been friends for so long.
“I was sad and I wept,” he said, “because I was so close to him. We had been friends for over 50 years and there was never a time I left him, even during the period he had the accident. I was there through his ordeal, traveling and visiting.
“We met during a social outing, he was a very sociable person. We met, went to clubs. Then when I had no car, he would pick me up in his car then to go about socialising. We enjoyed without tarnishing the images of our parents back then. He was popular with lots of friends because people wanted to associate with him.
“He did not know how to hide money because he would spend it on people, this, many learnt from him. I also learnt the habit of giving from him.
“He told me all about his health alone. He did not like publicity towards the end of his life. When he became a born-again Christian, all he wanted was to preach the words of God.
“You would see children around him, both the motherless and the under-privileged. If Wole should keep all the money he had, Wole would have been a billionaire but he took delight in giving to people.
“He took care of pastors and his friends. After service in his church, we would dine on his account. Wole helped in modeling my life financially.”
Senator, Oyo PDP commiserate with Awolowo family, Tribune
By Moses Alao
THE Deputy Senate Whip, Senator Hosea Agboola and the Oyo State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have described the death of Oluwole Awolowo as a great loss to Yoruba land and the entire country.
In statements separately made available to Saturday Tribune through Senator Agboola’s aide, Ayo Ayansiji and the Public Relations Officer of a faction of Oyo PDP, Mr Kehinde Salawu, they commiserated with the Awolowo family as well as the management and staff of the Tribune over the demise of the publisher, describing him as a true Yoruba man who stood as a bridge builder.
“This loss is saddening; it is a great loss to the Yoruba race and the entire country. Chief Oluwole Awolowo was a perfect reminder of the values and principles of the sage, Papa Awolowo. We pray that God gives succour to the Awolowo family, especially the matriarch, Chief (Mrs) HID Awolowo,” the Oyo PDP said.

His death is painful, irreparable —Lanre Banjo
By Olayinka Olukoya - Abeokuta
Former governorship candidate of the National Conscience Party (NCP) in Ogun State, Mr Lanre Banjo, has described the death of Chief Oluwole Awolowo, as a painful and irreparable loss.
Banjo, in an electronic message to the Saturday Tribune in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, said the good people of Ogun State are deeply grieved by his demise.

“It is with deep sense of loss and emptiness that I received the shocking news of Chief Oluwole Awolowo’s demise. His loss is a painful and irreparable one, and has definitely further created an irreplaceable vacuum in Papa Awolowo’s dynasty. “Given the struggle of the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo for the masses of our country, those of us from Ogun State are uniquely and deeply aggrieved by this loss. “

While I wish him a deserved rest and pray God grant the family the fortitude to bear the loss, I advise state governments to invest heavily in health sector. Prevention is better than cure. In a country where all rulers run away to foreign countries for medical care, the led will have no choice but to be experiencing untimely death,” he noted.
PDP faction mourns

A faction of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Oyo State also commiserated with the family of the sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, the entire staff, management and the board of the African Newspaper of Nigeria plc (ANN) over the loss of their son and publisher, Chief Oluwole Awolowo.
“While praying to God to grant the family especially the matriach, Chief (Mrs) HID Awolowo, the fortitude to bear the loss, we take solace in his exemplary, humane and humble life as a confirmation of the saying that an elephant does not give birth to a dwarf and an assurance that his place in the company of the saints is assured in the great beyond.
“We pray that the Tribune titles continue to wax stronger as a united family where every staff member continues to see him or herself as a co-owner of the organisation, in fulfilment of the wish of the publisher,” the factional PRO, Lukman Agboluaje wrote in the condolence register.
Chief Adeniyi Akintola (SAN)
“Uncle Wole, you lived a worthy life. You were a complete gentleman who exhibited love for all including your aburos in diaspora. You will be greatly missed, sleep well.”
NIPR mourns
THE Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR), Oyo State chapter in a statement, commiserated with the Awolowo dynasty on the passing away of the scion of the family and the Publisher/Vice Chairman of the Tribune Newspapers.
The statement signed by Yetunde Alagbe, the Chairman of Oyo State NIPR said: “We also identify with the management and staff of Tribune Newspapers at this period of grief. It is our candid prayer that God would grant us all the fortitude to bear the loss.”
It’s a colossal loss to Nigeria —Runsewe
By Jacob Segun Olatunji -Abuja
Director General of the Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC), Chief Olusegun Runsewe, has described the death of Chief Oluwole Awolowo as a colossal loss to not only the Awolowo biological and political families, but also the Yoruba race and Nigeria in general.
In a statement in Abuja, on Friday, Runsewe said the news of the death of Chief Awolowo came to him as a shock.
“I am yet to recover from the shock when I heard of it. Honestly, I still don’t believe that Egbon Wole is dead,” he said.
Chief Runsewe said that the publisher of the Tribune titles was an epitome of humility, whose exemplary life as a politician, evangelist, publisher and an activist was worthy of emulation by generations unborn.
“It is worthy to note that Uncle Wole, during his lifetime, never showed off as the scion of the sage, Papa Obafemi Awolowo. He maintained the family’s name until his death. He fought a good fight and he has gone to rest as a saint.”
He pointed out that Awolowo was able to carry the mantle of the leadership of the Awo dynasty and was able to ensure that the legacy of Papa, especially in the media, did not die with the sage by ensuring the survival of the ANN Plc till date.
Nasarawa gov mourns
By Ademola Adegbite- Lafia
GOVERNOR Umaru Tanko Al-Makura of Nasarawa State, on Friday, joined millions of Nigerians to commiserate with the African Newspapers of Nigeria (ANN) Plc, Publishers of the Tribune titles and the Awolowo family over the death of Chief Oluwole Awolowo, the Publisher/ Vice Chairman of the company.
Governor Al-Makura, in a press release issued by the government and signed by the Chief Press secretary (CPS) to the governor, Iliyasu Ali Yakubu, described his death as a great loss to the nation, saying his column, OBA’S LECTERN, in the Sunday Tribune would be greatly missed.
According to the release, Governor Al-Makura was said to have received the news with great shock, saying it was now that his fatherly advice and counselling would be greatly needed.
..Borno gov too
By Leon Usigbe -Abuja
GOVERNOR Kashim Shettima of Borno State has condoled with the family of Chief Obafemi Awololwo and management of the African Newspapers of Nigeria (ANN) Plc on the passing of Chief Oluwole Awolowo.
In a statement by his Special Adviser on Communications, Isa Gusau, on Friday, Governor Shettima said Awolowo contributed so much in the advancement of democracy and improved governance through the media and other means.
Observing that the publisher demonstrated some of the qualities of his father before joining him, the governor urged the family and associates to take solace in the fact that Awolowo would be remembered for his good character and contributions to the society.
While commiserating with his immediate family, management and staff of ANN plc, Shettima noted that the Tribune newspapers had been “one of those known with principles in defence of public rights and national development.”
He prayed for the repose of Chief Awolowo’s soul and fortitude for his family to bear the grave loss.
His death shocking —Adedoja
Former Minister of Special Duties and later Sports, Professor Taoheed Adedoja, said he was shocked at the death of the Tribune Publisher.
“I was shocked when I read the news of the demise of my brother, Chief Oluwole Awolowo.
“What a great loss, losing him isn’t easy, the pain and grief this loss has evoked is huge. He was a man of God; his passing away is a loss. Loss to the people of Nigeria, loss to his children, friends, wife and our Mama, HID Awolowo, the entire Awolowo family and all staff of the Nigerian Tribune.
“He answered the call of God at the most unexpected time.
“May the Lord grant us and the entire family of Awolowo the fortitude to bear the loss. Sleep well and good night.”
Senator, Rep condole with family
A member of the Senate, Akin Odunsi, representing Ogun West Senatorial District, said “the death of Chief Oluwole Awolowo is most shocking and unfortunate.
“He was very kind and loving. He was a gentleman to the core. He left positive and lasting impressions with whoever came his way.
“May God Almighty console the Awolowo family, particularly his immediate family and Mama HID,” the senator said.
Also, a member of the House of Representatives, Tunde Ogunola, representing Ado-Odo/Ota Federal Constituency of Ogun State, commiserated with the state government on the death of Awolowo.
“I thank Almighty God for the exemplary life of Oluwole and his commitment to promoting the welfare of the people.
“I am profoundly touched by the irreparable loss his death will be to the entire Awolowo dynasty, the Yoruba race and the entire country.
“It is, however, heart-warming to note that Oluwole had lived most of his productive years on earth to the service of God and humanity.
“As an evangelist, he touched many lives and saved many souls. He equally engaged in many philanthropic activities to ease the pains of the down-trodden in the society,” he said.
National Accord Newspaper mourns
The National Accord Newspaper, Abuja has expressed its condolence to African Newspapers of Nigeria Plc, on the death of Chief Oluwole Awolowo.
In a realease signed by its Editor-in-chief, Mr Tom Chiahemen, it described the deceased as a distinguished Nigerian, selfless community leader, reputable evangelist and tested politician who kept the flag of the Nigerian Tribune flying.
“He will be remembered for sustaining the great tradition of excellence of the Tribune fame through his management acumen.
“We pray that his gentle soul will rest in perfect peace and God will grant his family, friends, management and staff of the Tribune the fortitude to bear this great loss,” the release stated.
It’s a monumental loss —Kwara PDP
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Kwara State chapter, said it received with shock, the news of the death of the Publisher/Vice Chairman of the African Newspapers of Nigeria (ANN) Plc, publishers of the Tribune tittles, Chief Oluwole Awolowo.
The party said in a statement that the death was a monumental loss to the media industry, nay, Nigeria.
“Prince, as he was fondly called by his peers, will be greatly missed for his immense contributions to the growth and development of the media industry as he turned the Tribune titles to must-read newspapers and a household name in championing the course of the downtrodden in Nigeria,” the statement said.
Rep members commiserate with Awolowo family
As condolence mesages continue to pour in for the Awolowo family over the death of Chief Oluwole Awolowo, two members of the House of Representatives, Honourable Kayode Muritala Busari and Honourable Ibrahim Olaifa on Friday in Abuja commiserated with the family, the Nigerian Tribune and the Yoruba race in general.
Hon. Busari, representing Lagelu / Akinyele Federal Constituency described the exit of Oluwole Awolowo as an irreparable loss “ to the progressive people of the Western Nigeria and to the numerous people that uphold the marxist / socialist political ideas of the sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo”,
Hon Olaifa representing Oluyole Federal Constituency said it was a pity that the cold hands of the death could snatch a useful person like Chief Awolowo at this time in the life of the nation when his wealth of experience was still much needed.
AUD also commiserates with family
The Ansar-Ud-Deen Society of Nigeria in its message through Alhaji Kelani expressed sympathy with the Tribune family.
“On behalf of the Ansar-Ud-Deen Society of Nigeria, I sympathise with the Tribune family on the demise of your publisher. I pray that Allah will grant him eternal rest.”
The accident of September 30, 2006 —Oluwole Awolowo, 1942-2013
Saturday, the 30th of September,2006, has come and gone but it has left an indelible mark of history for me due to my involvement in a fatal motor accident at Quarry area, a distance of about 15 kilometers from Ibadan on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
I did not suspect any danger ahead. The day started like any other as I took off from Ikenne to attend a meeting in Ibadan around in Peugeot 605 car in the company of two other persons.
It is no gainsaying the fact that I am a seasoned and cautious driver, who has neither been hit by anybody nor hit anybody since I obtained my driver’s licence in 1957. A span of 50 years.
It is also customary for me never to exceed 100 kilometres while driving and I don’t look sideways, I do not stop to buy anything while on a journey just as I always plan my journey ahead.
From 1957 till date, I have travelled far and wide driving myself to and from Abuja, Lagos and Ibadan. The same goes for various cities from South to North, West to East and in the last five years, I have conveniently and consistently driven myself from my base ((Ikenne) to my office (Ibadan) from Mondays to Fridays, without any hitch.
As a matter of fact, I prefer driving myself to any other driver and going by my simple calculation, I should have covered about 200,000 kilometres in the last five years from Ikenne to Ibadan, not to talk of other places.
Since I had a great faith in Christiandom since 1989, it has become the practice for me to cover myself with the blood of Jesus Christ whenever I am going out. I used to recite the Book of Revelation. (Rev 22:2: In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruits every morning. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations), which I did accordingly on the bloody day of the accident. To cut the story short, a truck (trailer) was in my front on the expressway while another was following me closely in full speed, trying to overtake my vehicle.
Mindful of the havoc the one at the back could cause, I decided to move to the other lane, but unknown to me, another trailer was there just as the one in front had blocked my view.
As I made for the last lane meant for motorcycles and passers- by I ran into another trailer which had developed a fault and which had reportedly been parked there for sometime. In a jiffy, confusion set in, the roof of the car had gone, the occupant of the back seat was thrown on the front while the man beside me found himself on the floor of the mangled car.
As for me, my right leg was trapped between the gear and the engine while my head hit the wind screen, resulting in a very deep cut on the forehead. I was in the pool of my blood.
I was afraid that I might die of shock if urgent action was not taken, hence I concentrated and comported myself just as the thought of Psalm 118: 17 came to my mind and I started saying: “I shall not die,”
While Satan was tormenting us in the wreckage, I was shouting for help from passers-by with my left hand while I held my head with my right hand to prevent more blood from gushing out.
To my utmost surprise, most cars sped off without bothering to know what happened to us until a woman came to our rescue. But, unfortunately, as she tried to start her car’s engine in order to convey us to the hospital, the car caught fire!
At around 10:30 a.m, God’s intervention came miraculously and the devil vanished as three young men came out of their car to get us out of the wreckage and I pleaded with them to be mindful of my leg, which was stuck around the gear so as to avoid destruction of my spinal cord.
Suddenly, one of them raised alarm, “so, Uncle Wole Awolowo is the one!” Thereafter, I gave them five hundred naira (N5oo:oo) to buy sachet water to pour on my head and that they should take me to Oke-Bola, Ibadan.
Thereafter, information about the accident got to my sister, Rev. (Mrs.) Tola Oyediran, and people from all walks of life started coming until we found our way to the University College Hospital (UCH) Ibadan. However, I had received first aid at St. George’s Hospital, Oke-Bola, Ibadan, where Dr. Femi Ogunlusi stitched my head.
To my greatest surprise, hardly had we landed in the hospital (UCH) when the Governor of Oyo State, Otunba Christopher Alao-Akala, broke protocol to visit me at the hospital. I learnt he drove himself to the hospital without a security detail!
A brilliant, courageous, forthright hero, Otunba Alao-Akala is admired and revered not only for his eloquence, but also for championing the cause of wheeling me on the stretcher for all the medical tests, scanning and X-ray throughout the day.
He is a man loyal to his friends. He did prove that he has loyalty that stretches beyond party, beyond sectionalism. I am equally short of words in expressing my gratitude to all the people from Lagos, Ikenne, Abeokuta, most especially the executive governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, who expressed concern and affection throughout the period.
I started thanking God for His mercies on everyone of us in the car as no one could believe that anybody could come out alive from the car.
That morning I got caught in a hurry. As I drove on, the Lord spoke to me. “You broke the law,” I agreed. Breaking a man made-law was serious enough, but I was guilty of breaking a far greater eternal rhythm. I had submitted to the sin of hurry.
That little body I have is, I do believe, the greatest weight I have on my conscience. For I realise from this moment it is a mortal sin to violate the great laws of nature. We should not hurry; we should not be impatient. But we should confidently obey the eternal rhythm. If that little butterfly could always flutter before me to show me the way. How can we avoid the sin of hurry? By absolutely surrendering to Him, releasing ourselves from imposed deadlines, and living in the rhythm of all to Jesus I freely give, with no apologies, no excuses, no regrets.
Living moment by moment in obedience to His timing Lord God, Creator of time and eternity, forgive me for submitting to the sin of hurry.

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