By Bode Akinbode, Ibadan
Oyo State Governor Engr Seyi Makinde has recounted how he missed last moment opportunities with his late mother,Chief (Mrs) Abigail Omojolagbe Amope Makinde (nee Omoregie).
The Governor who said the news of the death of her mother is still very hard for him, spoke in a tribute at Service of Songs held at The Archade of the Oyo State Government House, Agodi, Ibadan on Thursday as part of the funeral rites for his late mother.
Speakers at the event spoke glowingly of the memory of the late mother at the event which was attended by former Governor Rasheed Ladoja, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo state, former Ambassador Taofeek Arapaja, President Christian Association of Nigeria, Dr Olasupo Ayokunle, Pastor Femi Emmanuel, Arch Bishop Segun Okubadejo among other notable dignitaries.
Makinde who recounted that he had promised to see his mother the weekend after the Ondo election but was unable to pick her calls for the fear of not been able to grant her ‘suspected’ wish of stopping by to see her before the agreed time.
He added that he was shocked to be woken up the following morning only to receive the news of the death of his mother, adding that what the deceased would not take is for any of her children not to be serious with their studies or education.
Makinde said “It is still very hard for me. The relationship that I share with my mother is like a no other one. I spoke to her on Monday immediately after the Ondo state elections and I told her that I will see her over the weekend, then, I left for Port Harcourt on Wednesday morning.
“And throughout Wednesday she was calling me and I was saying to myself that even if I pick the call, since we were out of town, it wont make any sense because I kind of guess why she was calling me, she wanted me to stop by and see her, so I didn’t pick the call.
“By Thursday morning, they came to wake me up and said, they were knocking on my mum’s door and she wouldn’t answer and then maybe about 15 to 20 minutes later, they forced the door open and they met her, she was gone.”
He furthered, “I can only say that, it is hard to question God. I thought before we would start talking about mama even going, she should be about 85 but that did not happen.
“My mum was a tough woman. She came to Ibadan with nothing, according to her. She was just looking for a green pasture and Ibadan then happened to be the capital of Western region, so she came just like anyone would come.
“And she met my father, I think she came when she was 18, one year later she was pregnant with my eldest brother.
“She had him at slightly above 19. So, I started thinking to myself that this woman started early, she knew that she wont go anymore to school, she would only have the children, take care of them and probably they will be her own degree.
“So, she started working as an interpreter at UCH and later as a telephone operator and what she wont take from you is for you not to take your education or studies seriously because according to her, it would be double jeopardy if she refuses to go to school becausae she was having us and we that she had will also refuse to go school and so who is going to save who.
“It was an experience for me to have spent a little above 52years of my life with my mother. I will forever cherish that relationship.”
In his short exhortation at the event, the Vicar, St Pauls Anglican Church, Yemetu, Dr Samuel Osungbeju recounted the good deeds of the later mother of the Governor calling on others to also remember to take a cue from her.