The immediate past Press Secretary in the palace of the Ooni of Ife, High Chief Funmilola Olorunnisola, has died after a brief illness.
In a press release Comrade Moses Olafare, Director, Media and Public Affairs, Ooni’s Palace, the veteran journalist, who served under late Ooni Okunade Sijuwade, Olubuse II, for 30 years – 1985 to 2015 when the late Ooni joined his ancestors, died on Tuesday in his Ile-Ife residence shortly after complaining of a chest pain.
Olorunnisola, the traditional Prime Minister and Obarisa of Odogo-Ijesa, was a seasoned journalist, media practitioner and public relation manager per excellence.
Olorunnisola until his death was an influential personality in the inner recess of Ife Royal Court as a close aide to His Imperial Majesty, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, who held him in high esteem and continued to find him majorly relevant in the affairs of the palace because of his wealth of experience in advisory capacity.
Surprised by the death of Olorunisola, Ooni Ogunwusi, who described him as a great personality, rare gem, disciplined gentleman and a core loyalist who dedicated himself to the service of the ‘Oonirisa’ with absolute humility and deep passion.
“Too bad, it’s indeed an untimely death. We will greatly miss him. He was appointed 31 years ago by my predecessor, Ooni Okunade Sijuwade, Olubuse II. I, subsequently upon my enthronement, found him very resourceful and I retained him as a Special Tourism Adviser. Though retired after 30-year meritorious service to this palace, but obviously not tired.”
Born in 1950 to the family of Chief Samuel Onifade Olorunnisola of Idogo, Ijebu-Jesa, had spent 11 years at the Broadcasting Corporation of Oyo State (BCOS), Ibadan, where he rose to the position of Controller of News. He was appointed in 1983 as the Chief Press Secretary to the then Governor of Kwara State, Chief Cornilus Adebayo. He became Press Secretary to late Ooni Okunade Sijuwade in 1985 and served for a period 30 years. He was also appointed by the former Governor of Osun State, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, as Chairman Culture and Tourism Board the position he held for 8 years.
Late Olorunisola was survived by two wives, Folasade and Oluwatoyin, with six children Tomilola, Sunmisola, Gbemisola, Kayinsola, Kunmilola and Pemilola.
His body has since been deposited at the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital (OAUTH) Ile-Ife, while burial arrangement would be announced later.