Fondly referred to as Iku Baba Yeye, the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Atanda Adeyemi III, was reported to have joined his ancestors on Friday, April 22nd, 2022 at the age of 83; bringing to an end, his 52 years of illustrious reign on the throne.
In loving memory of the longest serving Alaafin of Oyo, here are some of the highlights from his life and time:
Oba Lamidi Adeyemi was born into the Alowolodu Royal House on October 15, 1938 and was a member of the House of Oranmiyan. The monarch whose mother, Ibironke of Epo-Gingin, died when he was young; was the son of late RajiAdeniran Adeyemi, who became Alaafin in 1945.
One notable attribute of the late monarch, was his love for boxing, a skill he had dramatically displayed in public. In his younger age, Oba Lamidi was a boxer but had to retire early,due to his coronation.
He ascended the throne of Alaafin in November 18, 1970 at the age of 31, shortly after the end of the civil war. He succeeded Oba Gbadegesin Ladigbolu I and he reigned on the throne for 52 years, to be the longest serving Alaafin of Oyo. Oba Lamidibecame the king during the period when Colonel Robert Adeyinka Adebayo, was the military governor of Oyo state.
He was wealthy and blessed with long life. He preserved the stool, promoted the Yoruba culture and was an epitome of royalty.
Appointment/ Position Held
In 1980, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi was appointed as the Chancellor of Uthman Dan Fodiyo University in Sokoto, the position he held till 1992. In 1990, he was appointed by General Ibrahim Babangida as Amir-ul-Hajj, in recognition of his commitment to the consolidation of Islam in Nigeria. In 1975, the then Head of State, General Murtala Muhammed included Oba Adeyemi, in his entourage to the Hajj.
The late Alaafin was the Permanent Chairman of the Council of Obas and Chiefs in Oyo state until May 3, 2011 when former Governor Adebayo Alao-Akala announced that the state government, had passed a law that introduced rotation of the office of chairman between the Alaafin and two other kings in the state – the Olubadan of Ibadanland and the Soun of Ogbomoso.
Alaafin was married to his senior wife, Ayaba Abibat Adeyemiand about twelve younger wives, with whom he attended events.His junior wives were – Ayaba Rahmat Adedayo Adeyemi, Ayaba Mujidat Adeyemi, Ayaba Rukayat Adeyemi, AyabaFolashade Adeyemi, Ayaba Badirat Ajoke Adeyemi, AyabaMemunat Omowunmi Adeyemi, Ayaba Omobolanle Adeyemi, Ayaba Moji Adeyemi, Ayaba Anuoluwapo Adeyemi and AyabaDamilola Adeyemi.
He had numerous children and grandchildren, whose exact number is uncertain.
Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III died at the Afe Babalola University Teaching Hospital, Ado Ekiti, Ekiti state; where he had gone for a routine medical checkup and was buried in Baara, in accordance with the Islamic rites. He died at the age of 83.
It has been said that everyone will be remembered for their deeds – either good or bad, endeavour to impact positively on humanity. Adieu! Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Atanda Adeyemi III, your memory will forever linger in our hearts.