Monday, July 25, 2016

Ogun monarch, Oba Sonariwo, dies at 90 in UK

The Akarigbo of Remoland, Oba Michael Sonariwo, is dead.

Punch gathered that the first-class monarch, who was the incumbent Chairman of the Ogun State Council of Obas, joined his ancestors on Saturday evening.

 He was aged 90 years.



The accountant-turned monarch, who ascended the throne on July 14, 1990, our correspondent further gathered from a reliable source, joined his ancestors in the United Kingdom where he was flown to on July 17 after a brief illness.

He spent 26 years on the throne. The monarch had an elaborate celebration of his 25th anniversary on the throne last year. The event attracted many dignitaries including the Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo.

A top government official in the state, who craved anonymity because traditional rite must be performed before the demise of the monarch could be made public, confirmed the Akarigbo’s death.

He said, “The monarch died on Saturday evening in the UK where he was flown to on July 17, after a brief illness.  He joined his ancestors in the presence of his Olori, Abosede, who accompanied him on the medical trip.”

However, the state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Adedayo Adeneye, said he could not confirm whether the monarch had joined his ancestors or not until there was a formal letter to that effect from the palace of the Akarigbo.

He said, “I cannot confirm whether or not Oba Sonariwo has joined his ancestors or not. We must wait for a formal confirmation letter from the palace of the Akarigbo.”

Sonariwo, who was born in Ita Eleye in Lagos State in 1936, attended St. John School, Aroloya, Lagos from 1941 to 1949.

He later proceeded to Methodist Boys High School from 1950 till 1955.

The traditional ruler, who became an orphan at age six, had been quoted as having nursed the dream of working with the Central Bank of Nigeria so that he could become the CBN governor  and “sign my name on the naira notes.”

But he later travelled abroad for further studies and after a series of training in tax and accounting profession, he worked with the Inland Revenue Service.

A reliable source said the state Governor, Ibikunle Amosun, had already been hinted about the passage of the monarch but the government had yet to make any statement as of the time of filing this report.

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