YINKA ODUMAKIN, 1 YEAR AFTER: A Hero And Legend In Death
By David Adenekan
A year ago, one of Nigeria’s heroes and activist extraordinaire, a passionate advocate and lover of the sustainability Oduduwa people, succumbed to the cold hands of death.
The news that followed the demise of a gigantic freedom fighter, Chief Olayinka Odumakin hit the air and like a tsunami, the mainstream and social media were awash with an overwhelming outpour of tributes as if a lovable and great president of a country has just passed away. It was an atmosphere of pain, grief, and sorrow.
Again, a great Comrade, fighter, and astute leader is remembered by a fellow Comrade; David Adenekan, of their last conversation and the memory, lingers.
The last time I spoke with Comrade Olayinka Odumakin on the phone, says Adenekan, was during the electioneering campaign of 2019 general elections.
“I had called him to feel his political pulse about the danger of re-electing President Mohammed Buhari for the second term. His voice was very faint on the phone and I felt in my spirit that something was wrong. He confided in me that he was sick and on admission. I did not know when I shouted with a loud voice “Comrade, the Yoruba nation cannot afford to lose you at a time we are at a crossroad in our struggle and pursuit of a new social order”.
I never knew the inevitable hands of death will do his worst in less than three years.
Suffice to say that the paradox of death has eventually taken our fine comrade to the great beyond and the sorrow of death has now overshadowed our struggle for a better society.
The news, on that unfortunate day, came to me as a rude shock. Yes, the news of Yinka Odumakin’s death has created a big vacuum that may be far too big for anybody to fill.
Yinka, this is because of who you are and what you represented. Your strong resolve for social justice and liberty for all cannot be overemphasized.
Also, your humble style of leadership and uniqueness in writing, you have taken with you to the great beyond. Who will fill your weekly column in Tribune Newspapers?
I was in shock at the news of your death that I could not utter a word on social media as I was very sad in my spirit. This is very unlike me. I do not know what to write because of the vanity mood about this world and everything inside it which descended upon me the moment I heard the news.
What an unannounced passage of life to the great beyond in a time we are in dire need of leadership that will forcefully break the ceiling of bad leadership and poor governance in our society!
Oh Yinka! You are gone too soon and why now? “Erin wo”, the elephant has fallen and the whole forest is shaking in awe of a great political figure.
People that we least expected started pouring their encomiums and tributes of your great leadership style and your uncommon attribute to always stand for a just cause even in the face of threat to life.
Yinka, you are heroic in death because, many of your political adversaries have come to terms with the fact that your stand for justice and equity is unparalleled. Is your death now uniting many of your adversaries behind the truth? Wonder shall never end!
However, woe onto any man that will use your death as a campaign strategy to mobilize votes for a 2023 presidential election. This is because, in life and death, you have vehemently opposed any general elections without restructuring the country into true federalism that allows every region to control her resources. Even in death your stands about the terrible political situation in the country live on……
The movement for a better society will never end at the negotiating table of your adversaries that may want to use it as an opportunity to whip up sentiments among gullible citizens. This is far from it as we all belong to the same school of thought. There is a parallel line between light and darkness.
Also, they may want to use your death to open up a new political frontier for their selfish political interests. We have seen them visiting the home of our leader and the new acting chairman of Pan Afenifere Group, Chief Ayo Adebanjo. We want to believe that there is no clandestine motive behind all of these visits.
When was the last time some of these notable politicians visited Pa Ayo Adebanjo and made it a big news in the media???
Moreover, leadership in the school of activism is continuum. There are millions of Yinka Odumakin in Yoruba nation and this is why Yinka Odumakin’s fight for social justice, true federalism and a sovereign Yoruba Nation lives on……..
The image of the fire brand, Yinka Odumakin would remain an inspiration and indelible placard in our minds and the struggle for a better society shall continue and victory is certain
Adieu, one of the finest activists of our generation and you will forever be remembered for your great service to humanity.
Rest in peace our finest Comrade.
David Adenekan writes from Chicago, Illinois.