So long! Activist Yinka Odumakin, dies, Nigerians mourn

Yinka Odumakin
Yinka Odumakin

The spokesperson of Afenifere, the Pan-Yoruba sociocultural group, Yinka Odumakin, is dead.

Odumakin, a human rights activist died Saturday morning, while battling respiratory issues after recovering from COVID-19.

He was being managed at the Intensive Care Unit of the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), where he has been for a week.

The deceased was said to have been moved to LASUTH from the Infectious Disease Hospital in Yaba, Lagos, when his condition deteriorated.

As an activist, it will be recalled that Odumakin played a key role in the National Democratic Coalition (NADECO) that fought the regime of General Sani Abacha after the annulment of the June 12, 1993 election.

He, at a time, also worked as one of the spokespersons of the Southern and Middle Belt Leaders’ Forum (SMBLF), the body that represented the ethnic nationalities in the South-West, South-South, South-East and the Middle Belt.

Yinka Odumakin
Yinka Odumakin and his wife, Joe Okei Odumakin

Married to also an activist, Dr. Joe Odumakin, he had been one of the strongest critics of the present Muhammadu Buhari government.

Odumakin, as the spokesperson of Afenifere, had consistently criticised the Buhari-led All Progressives Congress (APC) Federal Government, especially over the herdsmen crisis and increasing kidnapping cases in the county.

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The government had also been criticised by Odumakin’s Afenifere for alleged impartiality and favouritism in appointment into various offices.

His voice was also very loud in condemning the activities of some killers in Yorubaland.

However, Odumakin had served as the spokesman of President Muhammadu Buhari in the days of the defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), the party under which Buhari contested but lost the 2011 election.

Nigerians have taken to the micro-blogging site, Twitter to mourn the deceased. Some comments are posted below:

Yinka Odumakin
The world is a stage
You played your part
It was eventful
We shall miss your role.