Poetry takes centre stage at Soyinka’s daughter, Iretade’s, funeral in Ibadan

Iyetade died in December

The funeral service for Iyetade, the daughter of Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka, at the Chapel of the Resurrection, University of Ibadan, on Friday could have been mistaken for a literary gathering but for a brown casket placed at the edge of the chapel’s main passage.

Iyetade, who was 48, died on December 28, 2013, at the University College of Hospital, UCH, Ibadan.

Family members and friends took turns reading passages from their literary works, Iyetade’s and works of other authors in tribute to the late mother of two.

In his sermon, Assistant Chaplain of the Chapel, Olufikayo Oyelade, urged all mortals to be alive to the realities surrounding death. He particularly warned Nigerians to refrain from amassing wealth and struggling for positions unduly.

“Death is real; it is therapeutic, and there is nothing anybody can do to stop it whenever it will. This world is like a market where everybody comes to buy and sell at different times. Each will go at different times. If this is real, why do we continue to amass as if we would never go one day? Our sister left the market at 48 when she had concluded what she had come to accomplish,” he said.

While asking the sympathisers not to grieve over the death of Iyetade, the Chaplain drew from the Book of Revelation, Chapter 20, stressing that however long anybody lived on earth, he or she would have to live longer in the life hereafter. Whether it would be in heaven or in hell was, however, left for the congregation to choose, he said.

“Death is like a bus stop on the journey to a destination. For us to live is Christ and to die, again. Without Christ, whatever one acquires on earth will be left behind one day,” he said.

He urged the family members, friends and acquaintances not to grieve over the demise of Iyetade, believing that her children: Elizabeth and Adeoto Omolaolu, were veritable legacies she left. He prayed that God would preserve the lives of the two children to lift the name and good deeds of their mother.

The service was attended by many sympathisers including a wife of former president, Olusegun Obasanjo, Bola; Governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amechi; former governor of Cross River State, Donald Duke; wife of Ogun State governor, Olufunso Amosun; and elder sister of the deceased, Moremi Onijala, among others.

The remains of the deceased were later interred at the Ultimate Gardens, a private burial ground along Ibadan-Lagos Expressway in Ibadan.


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