Tears as slain UI don, Ajewole, is buried in Ibadan

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Tears, on Tuesday, flowed freely as remains of the slain University of Ibadan don, Prof. Opeyemi Ajewole, were laid-in-state for last respects from the academia, friends, family and relations of the deceased.

The silence that pervaded the event at the Trenchard Hall of the university was intermittently interrupted by cries as people listened to friends, colleagues, Chairman of Academic Staff Union of Universities, University of Ibadan Chapter, Prof Ayo Akinwole, President of Senior Staff Club, Dr. Bisi Lawuyi, and representative of Forestry Association of Nigeria eulogised the deceased.

As the remains were moved out of the Trenchard Hall for the church service, preceding final interment, friends and families could not hold back tears seeing one of their own in a lifeless state.

Ajewole, a professor of Social and Environmental Forestry, was shot dead in his Olororo, Ojo, Ibadan, Oyo State, residence by yet-to-be-identified assailants on Monday evening, June 5, 2023.

The local branch of the Academic Staff Union of Universities had on Monday flayed security operatives’ failure to apprehend killers of the deceased four weeks after the incident, saying it speaks volume about the state of insecurity in the nation.

Speaking at the event, Akinwole said the Union would continue to fight for justice and ensure that the police arrest the killers of their colleague.

“These merciless people have cut short the life of our Iroko. We will stay faithful to that course that you stood for. ASUU will not rest until the perpetrators are brought to book,” he said.

On his part, Olawuyi, who recalled his last conversation with the slain don, said: “The late Iroko will forever live in the forest of our hearts.”

A representative of FAN, Dr. T. Afolabi, said that the late professor contributed immensely to the association by igniting their conferences with his unique deliveries.

He said: “It is pathetic and sorrowful. I called him the day he was killed. I have a message for those who killed him, ‘those who kill by the sword will die by sword’.”

In his sermon, Pastor Samson Ajetumobi of Men of Issachar Vision, Ibadan, said Ajewole’s life was cut short at his prime.

He emphasised that those who planned and killed the deceased would also die by gun because blood of the deceased would get revenge.

“It is okay to die because it is a price every human being must pay, but it is not okay to kill because it is punishable before God and men.

“God determines our days, when you read through the scripture, you will see that dying is okay, but killing is bad.

“God hates anyone who sheds the blood of the innocent. Nobody owns life. If a man is killed, he will account for it,” he added.

The event was attended by the Vice Chancellor of University of Ibadan, Prof. Kayode Adebowale; Registrar, Mr. J.O. Saliu; Pro-Chancellor of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomosho, Prof. Deji Omole; Director General of Forest Research Institute of Nigeria (FRIN), Prof. Zachariah Buba Yaduma and the Provost, Federal College of Forestry, Ibadan, Prof. Funmi Aderonmu, among others.