Ayaba Ashiat Folashade Adeyemi, one of the wives of the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, drew widespread attention in 2008 when she was delivered of a set of triplets to become arguably the first wife of a Yoruba monarch to be so endowed.
In this interesting chat with The Nation newspaper, she had this to say:
What was life like before you met the Alaafin?
I grew up in Sabo area of Oyo. Many things have changed now because of exposure and development. It was quite interesting growing up in that environment. I attended Stephen A layande College of Education.
How did you meet him?
I met him for the first time when I was on an excursion to the palace. During the excursion, I asked him so many questions. Probably that was where he took interest in me. I requested to have an interview with him to know more and develop the project I was working on. I was just 25 years old then. We became familiar and he later proposed marriage.
What attracted you to the Alaafin?
He is wise and intelligent. Most times when he is not in the office or attending to visitors, he is in the library reading. He reads a lot and encourages us to read too. At times he would tell you to look for the meaning of a word; you will be surprised that he would tell you the meaning of that word as it is written in the dictionary or on Google. He is such a wonderful man. His depth of knowledge is unrivaled.
He is also a unique Yoruba monarch. He is popular and brilliant, and there is no place he cannot go as a Yoruba oba. Alaafin is the first among the Yoruba obas. The way he does his things are different.
How romantic is he?
Kabiyesi is very romantic. If you are not close to him, you won’t know that he is loving and kind. At times when I’m in the kitchen, he would come and offer to assist. While at the college, he would dish food for me and instruct the driver to bring it to school.
The difference in our age gap has not stopped him from showing affection. He shows affection more than some of these young men you see outside there. What a young man can do out there, Kabiyesi does better.