Sir P. O Okolo , the most senior person of Okolo Family who spoke to Naija Reality News on the Death and burial of their Son, Professor Dr. Clement Abu Okolo who died in Saudi Arabia and later buried in Ibadan – Oyo State, Nigeria instead of his country home, Ofante Ogugu in Olamaboro Local Government Area of Kogi State, said it is Abomination to buried any of their sons or daughters outside their community .
Sir P. O. Okolo and the entire Okolo family distance themselves from the burial rite of Professor Dr, Clement Abu Okolo that was done in Ibadan Oyo State..
Recall that , the Medical Expert , Dr. Clement Abu Okolo died on the 30th of December, 2022 in Saudi Arabia and later buried in Ibadan.
Below is the statement from the most senior person in Okolo family , Sir . P. O. Okolo .
” On 30thDecember, 2022at about mid-day, my phone rang and I picked it. The caller
introduced himself as Mr. Solomon Audu. Exchange of pleasantries was brief and
he cleared his voice and told me that they received information from Saudi Arabia
that Dr.Clement had died there that morning. I was shocked and asked him what
happened. He replied that it was after a brief illness. I told him that I was confused,
and that by 6pm that day, he should call me back but he never did. I was at Ofante
at the time I received this call.
I was in this confused state of mind, when I observed one missed call from Barrister
Fred Okolo,Dr.Clements’sseniorbrother who resides at Abuja. I returned the call
and he confirmed that what Mr. Solomon Audu, our in-law told me was a fact that
Dr. Clement had died at Saudi Arabia as a result of some health complications.
He further confirmed that at the time of His death, his wife, Barrister Jumoke and his
two children were with him. He confirmed that he was on Sabbatical Leave there
and that he cautioned Clement not to entertain the idea of confirming his
appointment there because of their cultural practices which might not suit
Clements’s position as a Pastor; but it appeared he was interested in staying because
of the attractive condition of service.
I told him that initially, I never knew that
Clement was out of the country. However, I got to know through Pharmacist Felix
Okolo my son whom Clement chatted with on the internet. At this stage, Barrister
Fred Okolo said that Clement even told him not to let anybody know that he was out
of the country to Saudi Arabia.
As part of my responsibility, I asked him how soon he thought we might expect
He exclaimed that Dr.Clement was there for Sabbatical leave and not a
full fledge Staff of Saudi Government. He further stated that transporting his body
to Nigeria might pose a serious financial problem, as they concluded that they had
no money, stressing that even if he was asked to contribute about 10 thousand
Dollars, and he had no such money. At this stage, I told him that the U.I authority
should step in on behalf of Dr. Clement and make special appeal that a solution will
I now told him that the next stage was how to take him home to which he replied
that , the family in Ibadan may not buy that idea; as Dr. Clement once told him that
he would like to be buried in Ibadan.
I vehemently told him that, it was an abomination to ever think or suggest that Dr. Clement should be buried at Ibadan.
I warned him that , our culture will never take to such suggestion.
About one week later, I called Barrister Fred, whether they had received any
information from Saudi Arabia and he said there was no news yet, as they were at
that time, celebrating their own new year, as a result of which their Embassies were
shut down for the holidays.
I would like to state that my senior brother, Late J.A Okolo had his first Son, Mr.
Alfred Ichaka Okolo, who worked in the Ministry of Agriculture, Lokoja.
When I received the news of the death of his junior brother Dr. Clement, I attempted to invite him, but he avoided me for reasons best known to him. I tried to reach him through
their step brother by name Evangelist Akor Okolo, but he fled and avoided him.
About a week before they brought the corpse to Nigeria, when I did not know what
was going on, I called one of my niece by name, Joy Okolo, a sincere and honest
person who works in Lagos. I told her that, she should inform her sister, Mrs. Rose
Audu and the group there that they should never contemplate burying Dr. Clement in
Ibadan. I believe she did report to them all what I told her. I told her it’s an abomination
to think otherwise.
Some days to the arrival of the corpse to Ibadan, I called Barrister Fred Okolo to
confirm if they had received any information from Saudi Arabia. Fred again stated
that if he got to Ibadan, he will call me. Again, I told him that he should never
contemplate the idea of burying his brother in Ibadan. I told him that culturally, we
would not be able to defend burying Professor Clement at Ibadan before our people. When he
arrived at Ibadan from Abuja, he failed to call me. I became desperate and confused.
I was able to secure Dr. Clements’s wife’s phone number. I called her but a faint
voice asked me to send a text message as the place was rowdy, which I did. Up till
now, Dr. Clements’s wife has not acknowledged my call.
Around 12th January, 2023, some very concerned personalities from Ofante Ogugu in Olamaboro Local Government Area of Kogi State drew my
attention to the fact that they had seen Dr. Clements’s burial programme on the internet,
but wondered whether they are carrying me along. I told them that I didn’t know
anything like that.
My last desperate effort.
On the 12th January, 2023, I called Barrister Fred Okolo to stop descent to chaos by not
burying Clement in Ibadan, but he told me that Preliminary service was on, and the U.I authority had taken over the burial arrangement, as over three hundred professors and countless dignitaries; including one representing the Saudi King were all in attendance.
He warned that even If I appeared there, the security men covering the
event might never allow me to come near the stage.
The persons that had brought about this mess of a situation are;
Mr.Alfred Ichaka Okolo
Professor Rosemary Audu
Mr. Solomon Audu
Barrister Fred Okolo tried to persuade them, but failed.
From the above narrative, you can appraise that I was not involved in any way. They
did not recognize my person as the most senior person of Okolo Family. I should
state clearly that when the burial arrangements was ongoing, my brothers and sisters and I were not party to the whole plans, and wouldn’t have approved that Dr. Clement should be buried in Ibadan as we know the implication.
I will like to remind all those concerned that I am a respecter of tradition; as I buried
the following relations in conformity with our customs and traditions.
Late J.A Okolo
Late Emmanuel Okolo and
Late Lady Grace Okolo,my wife to mention but a few.
I did all this; as I have never breached the tradition because of the love and respect I
have for our tradition.
I know many had used offensive and provocative words against the family of Okolo
Odudu because I waited for long before commenting on the whole incident.
I hope my write up would help us to get to the root of the matter. ”