*ABOBAKU OF QUEEN ELIZABETH II WONT LOSE HIS HEAD BUT HIS JOB*
– By Kayode Ajulo
Tomorrow, 19th September 2022, Queen Elizabeth II will be laid to rest in a lavish, dignified, and solemn burial ceremony in London.
The morrow will be a day unlike any other, beginning with a public Christian burial service at Westminster that will be attended by heads of state and government, diplomats, aristocrats, politicians, and other influential people from all over the world.
Thereafter, there will be another private committal funeral service and then there will be another more intimate and private burial.
It is guaranteed that at least three funeral services, each filled with prayers, sentiments, pomp, and rituals.
The rituals will include traditions symbolising the end of the Queen’s reign.
The Imperial State Crown and the Sovereign’s orb and sceptre will be removed from the top of the coffin by the Crown Jeweller, separating the Queen from her crown for the final time.
Afterward, the Queen’s Abobaku will step forward.
Abobaku is a Yoruba phrase meaning “He who dies with the king” it refers to the King’s most senior and closest servant who has the responsibility of dying with the King when he joins his ancestors.
By his schedules of duty, Abobaku due to his closeness to King has enormous powers and privileges like his counterpart in the UK, Lord Chamberlain, he oversees the royal household, King’s horses, food and what the King or Queen must view or be entertained with.
The play “Death and the King’s Horseman,” written by the world famous Nobel laureate, Prof Wole Soyinka as he fled from Nigeria to exile England, illustrates the literal meaning of the Abobaku title, in the play, an Abobaku who is expected to commit ritual suicide after the death of the king, ran away from his duty by fleeing away from his duty.
During the Queen Elezabeth’s last post her “Abobaku” the Lord Chamberlain, Baron Parker, will perform his last duty to the late monarch.
He will step forward take a stand, take a bow and break his staff of office and place it on the coffin. The breaking of the white staff will signal the end of his service to the sovereign as her most senior official in the royal household.
By appointment of the Queen, Lord Parker took over from the Earl Peel as Lord Chamberlain on 1 April, 2001.
The Lord Chamberlain’s office is responsible for royal events and ceremonies, including Prince Philip’s funeral at Windsor.
This ritual was last done by the Earl of Clarendon, who broke his staff over the grave of King George VI in 1952.
Dr Kayode Ajulo.
Kayode Ajulo is a lawyer, Founder/ Chairman of the Board of Egalitarian Mission, Africa, a Non-Governmental Organization maintaining and promoting the belief that all people are, in principle, equal and should enjoy equal social, political, and economic rights and opportunities.