My husband’s last moments —Joe Okei-Odumakin

Dr Joe Okei-Odumakin, wife of the late Yinka Odumakin, on Tuesday, relived the last moments of her husband, saying that her husband died on Friday, April 2, and not Saturday, April 3, as earlier reported. 

According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Okei-Odumakin, a human rights activist, in a tribute to her late husband titled, ‘Yinka: Basking in the shadow that you cast,’ said it was important to put the record straight in the spirit of truth that Odumakin stood for. 

The rights activist stressed that due to the principles of truth of which her late husband lived for all his adult life, it was important to immediately put the record straight. “Now that I am in possession of your death certificate, I can see you passed on at exactly 10:40 pm on Good Friday (April 2, 2021) and not in the morning of Saturday, (April 3, 2021) as initially communicated. 

“The medics said his oxygen level was running low but my husband was reaching out for his tab to type out his column. “Since no one is permitted in the Critical Care Unit, we had committed you to the care of the best qualified medics at LASUTH and the hand of God, hoping to see you next morning. 

“The medics said they could not fathom how to immediately relay the message of your passage to me directly,” she explained. 

Recounting some of the deceased’s times while he was alive, Okei-Odumakin said her husband was never frugal in spending that “oxygen on his Yoruba earth, his beloved and his Nigeria, his truly beloved.” 

She said that if breath was the currency of life and its legal tender, then her husband spent his breath on causes. 

“My memories are rousing through chains of pains; a sea surge of a romance which sprouted in General Sani Abacha’s detention. 

“My husband was not a criminal, neither was I. “Our crime was standing strong for others as we always have been. We will return to the dingy detention cell in our reminiscences later,” she said. 

Recalling, she questioned: “Who meets and marries from detention at Alagbon? Only Yinka would ask, and only I would say, YES. 

“We were introduced to each other by the most qualified, the most preeminent, and the most decorated of inmate, Chief Gani Fawehinmi (SAN). 

“Chief said, Yinka, she’s a man’. Yinka married both the man and the woman in me. 

“It was our truest solemnisation of activist matrimony by a revered High Priest of the struggle…with the trench as our altar and the good of our people as our ultimate goal. 

“Yinka, it cannot be goodbye; it is goodnight and see you later on the other side with God. 

“I will bask with reckless abandon in the shadow of your cast. You came, you saw and you conquered,” she eulogised. 

Okei-Odumakin emphasised that she would carry forward the baton in the eternal word of their “leader”. According to her, Nigeria will be saved. “Nigeria will be changed and it will become a great nation. “Nigeria will work in my lifetime and even in yours as you live on in me, our children and generation yet unborn,” the rights activist affirmed. 

 

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