By Gbenga Olarinoye
OSOGBO—The Ooni of Ife’s second-in-command and the leader of Ile-Ife traditional kingmakers, the Obalufe (Orunto) of Iremo quarters, Oba Solomon Omisakin is dead, aged 85.
His death may have compounded the uncertainty surrounding the selection process of the new Ooni of Ife which has resulted in litigations.
However informed sources told Vanguard yesterday that; ‘’He had concluded the process of selection of the new Ooni before he died.’’
Oba Omisakin’s death is coming barely three months after the death of Oba Okunade Sijuwade in a London hospital.
The Obalufe is also the prime minister of Ife and oversees affairs in the town in the absence of an Ooni.
Vanguard gathered that Oba Omisakin’s death occurred at about 10 am yesterday at Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital OAUTH, Ile Ife.
Though the circumstance surrounding the death of the 85-year-old Obalufe was still sketchy at the time of filing this report, a close family source said the Octogenarian slumped in his house located at Eleyele Area of Ile Ife and was rushed to the hospital, where he later died around 10 am.
When contacted, the chairman of Eleyele Landlord Association, Chief Elijah Adeyele, confirmed the demise of Obalufe, saying he had been in his residence to condole with the family.
Also, one of the daughters of the late monarch, who spoke to newsmen on phone amidst sob, said: “he was rushed to hospital this morning and died few hours later.”
But at Iremo palace of Oba Omisakin, sympathisers were seen trooping in, while some others, who could not hold back tears, were weeping, despite the decision of other chiefs to keep mum on the development.
On what the death portend for the ongoing selection process of new monarch for the town, a source within Giesi Ruling House, said that his passage will not delay the process.
He added that the next chief in rank, Lowa of Ife, Oba Joseph Ijaodola, will step in and take full charge of the functions of Obalufe.