Passage of a Matriarch
The Nigeria Union of Journalists joins the Awolowo family and other well meaning Nigerians in mourning the death of Chief [Mrs] Hannah Dideolu Awolowo, the Matriarch of the Awolowo family, who passed on peacefully yesterday, only two months ahead of her 100th birthday.
Born, November 25, 1915, Mrs Awolowo was the publisher of Nigeria’s oldest surviving privately owned Newspaper, The Nigerian Tribune, founded in 1949. Indeed the survival of the newspaper despite the political and economic downturns clearly shows the tenacity, discipline and forthrightness of the publishers.
That this famous newspaper continues to wax stronger is a testimony of the shrewdness and insight of the Awolowo family.
In the colonial era, the newspaper served as the mouthpiece for Awolowo’s populist welfare programmes. It also played an important role in defending the interest of the Yoruba people in a period when different ethnic groups were struggling for ascendency.
A successful business woman and astute politician, Mrs Awolowo played an active role in the politics of the defunct Western Nigeria and stood in for her husband in the then alliance formed between the NCNC and AG, called the United Progressive Grand Alliance when the late Sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo was in jail.
Nigeria will surely miss her wise counsel and we pray that the Almighty God will grant her eternal rest and the Awolowo family, the fortitude to continue without her.
Shuaibu Usman Leman
Posted by Abdallah el-kurebe