The former governor of Oyo state, Late Governor Isiaka Abiola Ajumobi was buried in his residence in Ibadan, Oyo state on Sunday, 28th June, 2020. The deceased died after his brief sickness from coronavirus which claimed his life.
However, before his burial, there was controversy as to where his body was to be laid, before the remains were later laid on Sunday in his residence. The burial was first delayed due to disagreement and controversies between the deceased family and the state government.
The family expected that after the deceased’s selfless service to the state for a period of eight (8) years, he had the right in the Agodi GRA. Whereas, the Oyo state government did not see it that way, because the mentioned building is in court on a litigation case. Also, under the land agreement law for GRA’s states that the rules guiding land use in the GRA forbids burial.
This generated a note of concern in the heart of well meaning citizens. As a state, there ought to be a centralised burial cemetery for dead governors, who once served the state. This would serve as an “HALL OF FAME” for the heroes that governed the state. This will be in form of an official cemetery where all governors will be buried with no exemption. For the past governors that are already dead, their dead bodies have no need to be extradited but an empty tomb could be erected in their name to keep them in memories.
This idea is not just to stop a repetition of disagreement on burial issues as it would have been a known thing to every intending aspirant and the community at large that there is a permanent cemetery for all deceased governors. A place of burial will no longer be a bone of contention.
It is also a way to keep our history as a state, collated and preserved. For example, an epitaph which will include their names, age, tenure, successes, crisis during tenure, favourite quotes and many others. Yes, this is a way to keep our system running and our history preserved. Anyone who desires to learn about these governors, their tenures and the state governance can easily access this cemetery and have detailed knowledge on the state past governors.
This cemetery can also serve as tourist centre for foreigners from other states within and outside the county. As this will be a relevance to HALL OF FAME, which will garner the interest of the public. Also, it will be a point of archival collection and primary source for history students who care to know or write about the state’s governance and governors.
Beyond these, this project will also enable sitting governors to strive to make their tenures good and better, as it will be glaring to all and sundry, however they manage their tenure will be written out there for the public view. This, they will be remembered for, even by foreigners, long after their death.
In addition, having a permanent site for governors burials will also be a means of employment provision within the state. Different people will be needed to keep the cemetery good and nice to see, librarians will be needed to keep the records neat and intact, cleaners to make sure the cemetery is nicely kept, horticulturists will also be needed to plant and keep flowers tidy, gate keepers to make sure no one strays into the environment and many more hands will be employed to make sure the cemetery is a good and attractive place, and befitting for the governors’ final resting place. This will create more job opening for the citizens of the state.
Moreover, this will generate revenue to the state. Many people will see this as a tourist centre or bring life to our local museums. A ticket charge will be attached to this for anyone to pay before they can access the cemetery. This can be done through a self servicing ticket spot, in a way that no one needs to be in charge of the ticket, it will be self servicing and automated, and will directly go to the government’s purse. The ticket fee will be a token that can be easily afforded by all and sundry. This will be a new way to generate revenue for the state.
This official cemetery can be laid out under the state secretariat through the Ministry of Tourism or the state museum to bring life back to the local museum and the state history. This can be passed into law in the lower chamber of the state which will make it an irrevocable law.
As Oyo state is known as a PACESETTER, I am sure this idea will be copied by all state and even the Federal Govt….. Let’s do it again.. And show them the way to go!!!.
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria
God bless Oyo state Govt.
This is Ajayi Samson writing…Thank you