Drama at Ooni of Ife’s Palace: Wives, Children Barred from Burial (photos)

The final burial rites of the late Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade,
Olubuse II, was performed on Friday, but his wives, children and family
members were unable to pay their last respects as they were barred from
the programme.

Traditional prayers were offered for the late monarch by Tadimole Awo
Ilare, Chief Faloba. The event was conducted in less than three hours.

Ooni of Ife Wives Barred from Burial

According to PUNCH, a source at the palace told one of their
correspondents that no member of the royal family was allowed to see the
remains of the monarch since he was brought back to the palace.

He said:

“As we are holding this interdenominational service here, those
concerned are performing their own rites inside the palace where the
body is kept. You can see that the gates of the palace are locked and
nobody is allowed to go inside. Nobody can see him again except those
who will bury him. 

The wives and children were not even supposed to see his corpse at all
but tradition was broken this time around because he (Sijuwade) died in
London. But no family member can see him again. Those performing the
rites are there now and they will complete it today (Friday). He will be
buried in the middle of the night, but nobody will be there apart from
those who will lower him into the grave.”

Ooni of Ife Wives Barred from Burial

The source said those who saw the bodies of the previous Oonis were attacked by smallpox and did not survive the ailment.

Ooni of Ife Wives Barred from Burial

A monarch in Osun State, who spoke on the condition of anonymity,
disclosed to PUNCH that traditional rulers of the town went to various
shrines, including the Obalufon shrine in Ife to perform some rites for
Sijuwade on Friday.

Ooni of Ife Wives Barred from Burial

He said the traditional rulers later went into Ooni’s palace shortly
before an interdenominational burial service for the king commenced on
the palace premises.

The monarch said:

 “Nobody can see the Ooni, not even the US President, Barrack Obama. We
are with him. It’s only the initiates who can see him. His wives and
children cannot see him.”

During the service, the Preacher, Bishop of Ife Diocese of Anglican
Communion, Rt. Rev. Oluranti Odubogun, said despite his riches, Oba
Sijuwade died when it was God’s time to take him away.

The bishop, who was represented by the Very Rev. Olusola Akanbi, said the Ooni brought fame and popularity to his domain.

His said the monarch’s demise demonstrated that every mortal man would die no matter their status.

 “Baba has gone. He will stand before the King of Kings who will judge
what he did while here on earth.Some persons have started jostling to
succeed him now but we must all remember the judgement day when we will
give account of all that we did on earth. 

I urge you to make today a memorable one and give your life to Christ. Jesus is the only way, accept him today.”

But as the interdenominational service was about to take off, there was a
mild drama as worshippers of Oro cult in Ife, also called Isoro,
stormed the venue and attempted to stop the service. The worshippers
claimed that it was a sacrilege to hold an interdenominational service
for the departed king. And as the service went on outside the palace,
the traditional worshippers sang and danced inside the palace.

a cleric, Evangelist Toluwase Akeredolu, had disputed insinuations that
Sijuwade, as a prominent monarch, was in the cult. Akeredolu had said that Oba
Sijuwade died as a born-again Christian.


Akeredolu said this on July 29 after the transition of the monarch was
announced by the media.

The cleric, an evangelist with the Christ Apostolic Church, said the monarch
had few weeks before his transition, confessed all his sins to God after he
preached the gospel of Jesus Christ to him.

Akeredolu said he was privileged to have ministered to the monarch few weeks
before his death.

He said:

 “Oba Sijuwade told the
congregation at the last crusade we organised in Ile-Ife that he had forsaken
sins and accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and personal saviour. He confessed
publicly that he would live the rest of his life to serve the Almighty God.
“During the revival, Oba Sijuwade said he had committed the rest of his
lifetime to Christ, the saviour of all and had sung the popular song ‘All to
Jesus, I surrender.’”
It will be recalled that the late
monarch dropped the title of ‘Oluaye’ (owner of the universe) in 2010 in
deference to the Almighty God.”
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Open Heavens 15 August 2015: Saturday daily devotion by Pastor E. A. Adeboye – Favour Uproots Obstacles

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8 Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

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First photos from the ongoing burial rites for the Ooni of Ife

Pictured above is the Prince of Ile-Ife PRINCE ADEDAMOLA ADEREMI commiserating with The Ooni's most senior wife, Yeyeluwa OLORI MORISOLA SIJUWADE.

See more photos below courtesy of Ovation Magazine publisher Dele Momodu

Other wives of the late Ooni

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