THE Primate, Anglican Communion, Rt Rev Jasper Akinola, has described the Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade, as a humble monarch, who has the fear of God at heart.
Akinola, who preached during an interdenominational church service organised to commemorate the Ooni's 80th birthday ceremony, yesterday in Ile-Ife, said Sijuwade maintained a good relationship with God despite the allure of royalty.
He urged Nigerians to emulate the virtues of the traditional ruler, which he listed as humility, godliness and compassion.
The primate recalled that the Ooni removed his crown and went down on his knees during a prayer session, stressing that the act exemplified the traditional ruler as God-fearing.
Dignitaries from the public and private sectors graced the ceremony, which was the climax of a two-day celebration that witnessed presentation of chieftaincy titles to distinguished Nigerians and non-Nigerians.
Provost, College of Humanities, Osun State University, Ikire Campus, Professor Siyan Oyeweso, reviewed a book entitled, Ile-Ife, to commemorate the occasion.
Oyeweso, a professor of history, warned that Nigeria must not lose sight of its past in charting a course for the future. President of Republic of Benin , Dr Thomas Boni Yayi, was the guest of honour while the Asantehene of Kumasi, King Otumfuo Osei Tutu, was the chairman of the occasion.
A former Nigerian President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, and governors of Osun, Ekiti, Ondo, Ogun, were present at the colourful ceremony which also had in attendance the Secretary to Osun State Government, Alhaji Akinade Akinbade, Ambassador Segun Olusola, Osun Chief Judge, Justice Fasisi Ogunsola, Osun Attorney General, Chief Niyi Owolade, the Esama of Benin Kingdom, Chief Gabriel Igbinedion, and Prof Olu Aina, among others.