The Osun state traditional council Wednesday formally announced the death of Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade, Olubuse II. The announcement followed the observance of Oro ritual, a traditional passage rite carried out at the death of a monarch in Yoruba Land. The traditional chiefs of Ile-Ife had earlier disproved the news that Sijuwade died on 27 July in a London hospital. Osun Governor Rauf Aregbesola has also issued a statement confirming the announcement by the traditional council. Aregbesola, through his media aide, Semiu Okalanwon, said the late monarch “brought prestige, honour and dignity to traditional institution in our clime, his reign brought tremendous development and increased global attention to his domain”.
“Ooni Sijuade was a study and model in royalty. He embodied the best in traditional pomp and pageantry. He exalted the place of the royalty among our people. His contributions towards maintaining a place of pride for the Yoruba race on the world is huge.
“A loss though, we are, as a people, consoled by the fact that our Imperial Majesty lived a fulfilled life; one happily hallmarked by the great impact on his subjects, the entire state, region and nation.
“On behalf of my family, the great people of the Land of the Virtuous, I extend our heart-felt feelings to the immediate royal family of Oba Sijuade, the ruling houses of Ile-Ife, all the princes and princesses of Ile Ife, royalties far and near, and Yoruba people of the world.”