The serene town of Orun-Ekiti in Ekiti State, Nigeria was agog Friday, 4th July, 2014, as the body of late Pa John Awopetu Akanle, the father of Mr. Wole Akanle of the Corporate Affairs Unit, NICO State Office, Minna, Niger State, was laid to rest in an elaborate funeral ceremony, marked with distinct traditional splendour.
Born on Saturday, 28th April, 1928, Pa Akanle had his secondary school education at Christ School, Ado-Ekiti, trained and practised as a professional tailor in Ibadan, and thereafter worked at Ikerre-Ekiti from 1953 for many years.
A devout Christian, hardworking and versatile, the elder Akanle, who worked briefly with Ise-Orun Local Government in Ekiti State, was able to combine public duties with his love of farming and rose to become, for some time, the Secretary of Ondo State Cooperative Society, an enviable work position that earned him the nickname, “Akowe Agbe.”
The enduring legacies of Pa Akanle, which included honesty, transparency and tolerance of divergent views, were most noticeable in his contributions to his community and near perfect devotion to his family; and it was not surprising then that Oyewole Akanle, first son of the deceased, referred to him as, “My Dad, my friend and personal person.”
The memorable final burial rites of late Pa John Awopetu Akanle, the departed and beloved cultural icon of Orun-Ekiti community, attracted political leaders, administrators, family members, friends and well wishers nationwide including some members of staff of National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO).
He is survived by a wife, Lydia, eight children, and many grand children. Adieu Pa Akanle!