Nigerians woke up to the shocking news of the death of the highly revered Yoruba King, Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III who died late night of Friday April 22, 2022.
Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III, 83 (late), is uniquely known in Nigeria as one of the most powerful kings in the country having spent almost the age of Nigeria on the throne.
His rule as Alaafin of Oyo started in 1970 just 10 years after Nigeria gained its independence from the British colonial masters. He spent 52 years on the throne, making him not only the longest reigning Alaafin of Oyo but also one the longest reigning if not the longest in the entire Nigeria.
His reign was marked with so many commendable feats, here are 10 things to know about the late Alaafin of Oyo,
Alaafin Adeyemi was born Lamidi Olayiwola Atanda Adeyemi on October 15, 1938 into the Alowolodu Royal House of the famous Oyo town.
He became the Alaafin of Oyo in November 18, 1970, succeeding Oba Gbadegesin Ladigbolu I, during the governorship of Colonel Robert Adeyinka Adebayo, after the civil war. He was known popularly as Iku Baba Yeye.
During his reign, Oba Adeyemi permanently chaired the Oyo State Council of Obas and Chiefs.
In 1975, the head of state General Murtala Muhammed included Oba Adeyemi in his entourage to the hajj.
In 1980, he was appointed as the chancellor of Uthman dan Fodiyo University in Sokoto. He held the position till 1992.
In 1990, President Ibrahim Babangida appointed him Amir-ul-Hajj in recognition of his commitment to the consolidation of Islam in Nigeria.
Alaafin was married to Ayaba Abibat Adeyemi, his senior wife. However, he had about twelve junior wives, whom he attended events with.
His junior wives included Ayaba Rahmat Adedayo Adeyemi, Ayaba Mujidat Adeyemi, Ayaba Rukayat Adeyemi, Ayaba Folashade Adeyemi, Ayaba Badirat Ajoke Adeyemi, Ayaba Memunat Omowunmi Adeyemi, Ayaba Omobolanle Adeyemi, Ayaba Moji Adeyemi, Ayaba Anuoluwapo Adeyemi, and Ayaba Damilola Adeyemi.
Although the exact number of his children is uncertain, the Alaafin has numerous children, among which included a set of triplets.
With the demise of Alaafin Adeyemi, it is now the turn of the Agunloye Ruling House to produce the next Oyo monarch. Mr Adeyemi’s predecessor, Alaafin Ladigbolu, was from the Agunloye House.