Ajibola Abayomi, president of the Journalists International Forum For Migration (JIFORM), has described the passing of Comrade Yinka Odumakin, the National Publicity Secretary of the Apex Yoruba socio-political organization, Afenifere as a rude shock as he condoled the Yoruba nation over his demise.
JIFORM with over 300 Journalists across the globe covering migration matters said, Nigeria has lost a rare gem.
Odumakin died in the early hours of Saturday at the Lagos State Teaching Hospital where he has been hospitalized for a while.
JIFORM in a statement signed by Ajibola, described the death of the Afenifere’s spokesperson “as a painful exit of a resourceful journalist who dedicated the greater part of his life to humanity and the struggle for the enthronement of good governance and justice for all Nigerians.
“Odumakin, you left at a time Nigeria and indeed the Yoruba nation need your service most. No doubt you were an accomplished right activist, crusader and a renowned figure with passion for your calling and the entire Yoruba nation, you spoke for eloquently with pride.
“We shall continue to miss you. You have left a vacuum that will be difficult to fill. My personal encounters with you will remain evergreen in my heart as I am yet to come to terms with the reality that you are no more. I pray for the repose of your soul and ask that the almighty should comfort your lovely wife and my dear sister, Dr Joe-Okei Odumakin, who fondly calls me the ‘People News Editor’.
“Dr Joe-Okei, although a part of your body may have departed, JIFORM prays that one that has the power to make the dry bone rise again, shall lift your spirit and renew your strength. We share your pain.”
Ajibola recalled memories of his encounters with the Odumakins saying:
“I cherish the moments we shared together, the love and the spirit of activism. With nostalgia I recall how your wife narrated to me how both of you met as love birds at the University of Ilorin many years ago during the dark days of late General Sani Abacha’s regime as a military dictator in Nigeria from which I coined a banner headline that says ‘what Abacha joined together at Uni-Ilorin’ in one of our weekend editions while on duty at the Independent Newspapers.
Ajibola added that Odumakin carried out his duty as the Spokesman of the entire Yoruba nation with the energy of the youth combined with the wisdom of the elders as a trained Journalist deeply rooted in the culture of his people.
“Each time we read his position on national issues, we are always proud of his faultless-intellectual submissions.
“JIFORM commiserates with the Afenifere, Yoruba nation and indeed Nigeria at large because a big Iroko tree has fallen at it’s prime, what a tragedy and an irreparable loss to all of us. Egbon sun re o (rest in peace)” Ajibola lamented.