Delta State

The Eagle, World’s Oldest King Ohworode of Olomu, Passes

Rita Enemuru, Reporting

THE royal eagle and world oldest king, Owhorode of Olomu Kingdom, in Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta State, His Royal Majesty, Richard Layieguen, Ovie Ogoni-Oghoro I, has transited to eternity.

The Eagle, World’s Oldest King Ohworode of Olomu, Passes

His Royal Majesty, Richard Layieguen, Ovie Ogoni-Oghoro I

The passing of the monarch was announced to journalists by the Otota of Olomu Olorogun Macaulay Ovbagbedia, on Friday, at the Royal Palace at Olomu Kingdom.

Announcing the passage in a solemn voice amid a pin-drop silence, the Otota said: “We can confirm today that our Ohworode has gone back to God. He lived a great life, he served the government well and his people.

“We are mourning and celebrating, reason is because he was old, but it’s painful though,” he lamented.

His Royal Majesty, Richard Layieguen, Ovie Ogoni-Oghoro I

The Olomu Council of chiefs

Stonix News reports that the centenarian celebrated his 106th birthday in January, 2023.

Akpile of Olomu Kingdom, Olorogun Albert Akpomudje SAN,
while addressing the council, said due to the incident, a 21-day of mourning in the kingdom has begun with no ceremonies of burial and marriage.

He added that chiefs would thenceforth eschew adornment with the traditional red cap and would add black armband to any attire during the 21 days period of mourning.

Olorogun Akpomudje added that a burial committee will be constituted while the proper funeral rites will be announced at a later date.

The announcement of the monarch’s transition was accompanied with a deafening 21 canons to officially mark the royal exit of the centenarian.

His Royal Majesty, Richard Layieguen, Ovie Ogoni-Oghoro I


Before the announcement on Friday too, the Ema Dance Troupe of Olomu exited the royal father with a frenetic song and dance performance to the admiration of the chiefs.

Recall that the departed Ohworode of Olomu had celebrated his birthday on January 20, with a thanksgiving after age-related health challenges.

The monarch was the only Anglican Communion ordained as Royal Canon in the world. He also bagged a Honorary doctorate degree from the Delta State University Abraka for his contributions to education.

Ajuwe (My King), as he was commonly addressed till his departure, could still drive himself and read without glasses.

The monarch, whose set of teeth were still intact, also doubled as the oldest man (Okpako Orere) of Ogoni Olomu Community.

His Royal Majesty, Richard Layieguen, Ovie Ogoni-Oghoro I

Olorogun Ebenezer Okorodudu

Born on 20th January 1917, the departed monarch was baptized into the Anglican Communion in 1936. He was a retired Inspector of Education under the then Bendel State Ministry of Education.

He ascended his father’s throne as the 12th Ohworode in 1988 when he was 70 years old.

His reign witnessed tremendous peace, progress and development in the kingdom.

The departed Ohworode’s last public event was his 106 birthday celebration tagged “Longevity King,” where he sang
songs of praises to God and stated that a man only dies when God approves of it.

The disposition of the monarch and his farewell message on that day was clearly that of a departing eagle.

According to him, “God, I thank you for your grace, please open your ears to give me long life so I can do that which pleases you all the time.

“Many people came here today for various reasons because I have been away, but I am here today to thank God. Fear God and do his will. In whatever you do, call on God daily.

His Royal Majesty, Richard Layieguen, Ovie Ogoni-Oghoro I

Empty seat of the monarch

“Do your best to follow God’s directive in your life. Have clean hands, avoid stealing, avoid embezzlement of public and individual funds.

“Avoid sexual relationship with other people’s wives and your relatives. Learn to love, forgive and be free of hatred, avoid jealousy and be contented, avoid alcohol and drugs abuse,” the monarch added.

The Ohworode had 12 children, but was survived by 11, following the demise of the eldest child, Princess Elizabeth Ogbon-Day, who was Nigeria’s first woman ambassador.

The departure of the Ohworode will be missed due to his penchant for excellence, due process and strict adherence to the Urhobo culture.

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