By Kolade Larewaju
NORMAL business and social activities were Thursday paralysed in Ijebu Ode as residents abandoned their homes and defied a heavy downpour to receive the body of the slain Ogun Action Congress, AC, governorship candidate in the 2007 elections, Otunba Adedipupo Dina.
By 1.00pm, less than an hour ahead of the 2.00pm scheduled arrival of his remains from Lagos, the Ijebu Ode end of Lagos-Benin expressway had become jam-packed with hundreds of sympathizers.
The day witnessed mass movement of people from neighbouring towns and villages of Ijebuland who came to catch a glimpse of the remains of the late politician, among them were students, civil society groups, politicians, Okada riders, artisans, motor transporters, as well as market men and women.
His corpse arrived into the waiting hands of the anxious crowd with many attempting to remove the coffin from the MIC customized SUV with the plate number â€œDD DIRECTâ€ and carry it on their shoulder but for the refusal of the security men and burial party that accompanied it.
Clad in black T-shirt which has the picture of the late chartered accountant turned politician boldly inscribed on it, the mourners occupied both sides of the road singing solidarity songs while some wept uncontrollably.
There was an unusual traffic snarl along all routes leading to his country home as the major road linking Mobalufon area of the expressway where the procession began witnessed long queues of vehicles.
Officers and men of the Nigeria Police and other security agencies lived up to their promise to provide adequate security but despite the large number of those detailed to man the exercise, it was still a herculean task controlling the surging crowd.