Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, the Alaafin of Oyo and top Yoruba monarch, has died.
Alaafin Adeyemi, the third member of the Alowolodu Ruling House, died on Friday night at the Afe Babalola University Teaching Hospital in Ado Ekiti, the capital of Ekiti State in South-West Nigeria.
According to palace sources, the remains of the senior Yoruba traditional ruler were taken to Oyo town, 62 kilometers from Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, in the early hours of Saturday, and traditional rites began.
He was 83 years old and the oldest reigning Alaafin in history, ruling for 52 years.
The Governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde, is expected to make an official announcement upon receiving the report of the monarch’s passing from the Bashorun of Oyo, Yusuf Akinade, the head of the ‘Oyo Mesi’, who will now lead Oyo town before a new Alaafin is installed.
The monarch had been sick and a plan had been made to fly him abroad before he passed on late Friday night.
A source familiar with the medical travel plan said his tickets and those of a few wives were already procured.
His death came months after the two other senior Oyo State monarchs – the Olubadan of Ibadan, Saliu Adetunji, and the Soun of Ogbomoso, Jimoh Oyewumi – died. All happened in less than five months.
A new Olubadan has been installed but the Soun throne remains vacant.
Alaafin Adeyemi was born Lamidi Olayiwola Atanda Adeyemi on October 15, 1938 into the Alowolodu Royal House of the famous Oyo town.