Anglican Bishop of Oyo, Rt. Rev. Williams Aladekugbe, has described the death of former Oyo State governor, Adebayo Alao-Akala, as shocking and devastating.
Aladekugbe, who said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ibadan on Thursday, said “it is unexpected and too sudden, moreover, that he was just 71 years old, one does not expect it at such a time like this.’’
Alao-Akala died on Wednesday in his Ogbomoso home.
The bishop said “he was occupying a very big position in the political space of Oyo State.
“I have interacted with him on a number of occasions, he was a colossus, an unforgettable lead actor on the stage of life with his indelible footprints in the sand of time.’’
Aladekugbe also described Alao-Akala as a worthy philanthropist, great community leader, devoted Christian and a family man.
“We have invited him to a number of programmes in our diocese and he did us proud, his exit is a colossal loss, not only to his immediate family and APC, humanity has lost a rare gem,’’ he said.
Quoting from an unknown writer, Aladekugbe said, “A life well lived is a precious gift of hope and strength and grace from someone who has made our world brighter, and a better place.
“A life well lived is a legacy of joy and pride and pleasure, a living lasting memory our grateful hearts will treasure.’’
He prayed God to grant the entire Alao-Akala family, particularly his wife, children and grandchildren the grace to bear the loss.
Also, the Oyo State Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Apostle Joshua Akinyemiju, described Alao-Akala’s death as shocking.
“However, there is consolation in the fact that he lived well, was always excited by the things of God and he lived for others
“Again, it is very instructive that none of us will escape the ending of our physical life, so he has played his part and returned peacefully to his creator.
“He will be greatly missed in the political terrain of Oyo State and Nigeria as a whole.
“At this sorrowful moment, CAN Oyo State commiserates with his entire family, political associates, Ogbomoso people and Oyo State in general,’’ he said.
Akinyemiju also prayed that God accepted his soul and grant all the mourners the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.
“May his legacies stand firm very long after him,” he said.
Alao-Akala, a retired police officer, was also a former Chairman of Ogbomoso Local Government.
He was a deputy governor of Oyo State from 2003 to 2007, and later governor from 2008 to 2011 on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). (NAN)