But as the interdenominational service was about to take off, there was a mild drama as worshipers of Oro cult in Ife, also called Isoro, stormed the venue and attempted to stop the service. The worshipers claimed that it was a sacrilege to hold an interdenominational service for the departed king. And as the service went on outside the palace, the traditional worshipers sang and danced inside the palace.The worshipers of Oro cult in Ife, also called ‘Isoro’, clashed with residents who were erecting tents for the interdenominational burial service at the frontage of Enuwa Palace.
The final burial rites of the late Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade, Olubuse II, was performed on Friday, but his wives, children and family members were unable to pay their last respects as they were barred from the programme.
Some other people who had expected to see the body of the monarch lie in state were also disappointed as his remains were neither brought out for people to see nor was any casket displayed during the burial service.
A source said that no member of the royal family was allowed to see the remains of the monarch since he was brought back to the palace.
The source said those who saw the bodies of the previous Oonis were attacked by smallpox and did not survive the ailment.
A prominent chief in Ife, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the ‘Isoro’ descended on the people who erected the tents because they (initiates) wanted to observe a seven-day burial rites for the departed king.
Meanwhile, Saturday PUNCH learnt that Sijuwade’s family members flew to see his body immediately after he transited in a highbrow hospital in England.
t was learnt that the family members flew down to England to pay their last respect to the departed monarch.
The Araba of Osogbo land, Chief Yemi Elebuibon, who spoke with one of our correspondents on Friday, disclosed that the corpse of the Ooni belonged to Ile-Ife and not his family.
The Araba dispelled the belief that the heart of the late king would be fed to the next Ooni.