By Lere Olayinka

Former Governor of Ekiti State, Chief Segun Oni has eulogised the Matriarch of the Awolowo dynasty and the Yeye Oodua of Yorubaland, Mama HID Awolowo on her 96th birthday, describing her as a “a pride to the entire Yoruba race.”

Oni, who said in a release issued by his Media Aide, Mr. Lere Olayinka that those labouring to purchase the leadership of the Yoruba race should learn from the life and experiences of Mama HID Awolowo, noted that “Baba Awolowo was not wrong after all, to have described Mama as a 'Jewel of inestimable value' when he was alive.”

The former governor said he was particularly happy that in spite of the efforts by some elements to bring the good name of the Awolowo family to disrepute, Mama has remained undaunted and focused in upholding the virtues of honesty, sincerity, selfless service and Godliness and unity of the Yoruba nation that Baba Awolowo was noted for.

“I wish to congratulate our mother and conscience of the Yoruba race, Mama HID Awolowo on the attainment of 96 years.

“The attainment of this age by Mama is no doubt a confirmation of the grace the Almighty God has bestowed on her and it is our prayer that God in His infinite mercies will grant Mama many more years in good health.

“Mama is a no doubt a pride to the entire Yoruba race and we that are followers of Baba Awolowo will continue to revere her because she is more than a jewel to us,” Oni said.

While describing the leadership of the Yoruba race as priceless, Oni said; “Those seeking to purchase the leadership of Yoruba race with their ill-gotten wealth should again be reminded that no amount of money can be enough to make them Yoruba leader because Baba Awolowo, whose 'Jewel of inestimable value' we are celebrating did not purchase Yoruba leadership that he was even after his death.

“Therefore, no amount of cash that they throw around will guarantee a character whose pedigree, parentage and source of wealth are questionable; a place of honour in the Yorubaland like Baba Awolowo and our beloved mother, Mama HID Awolowo.”