Paulina Odigie, mother of ITUC-Africa GS, to be Laid to Rest on April 5


The family and friends of Mrs Paulina Okhiomo Odigie, mother of the General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation-Africa (ITUC-Africa), Comrade Akhator Joel Odigie, will Friday, April 5, gather in solemn remembrance as they bid her a final farewell.

Mrs. Odigie known for her grace, resilience, and unwavering support, passed away peacefully on January 4, 2024, at the age of 77 (1947 – 2024), leaving behind a legacy of love and dedication.

Born and raised in Ewohimi, in Esan- South East local government area of Edo state, South-South Nigeria, Mrs. Odigie popularly called Iya Bendel by friends and associates, touched the lives of many through her kindness and generosity.

Her warmth and compassion extended beyond her family, reaching communities and organizations.

According to funeral arrangements released by Pastor Ezra Odigie and Akhator Joel Odigie on behalf of the family, the funeral service to honor Mrs. Odigie’s life will take place on April 5th, at Ewohimi, in Esan- South East local government area of Edo state, South-South Nigeria.

Dignitaries including top labour leaders, family, friends, and well-wishers will come together to celebrate her life, share cherished memories, and offer their final respects.

The Labour Movement in Africa has continued to stand in solidarity with the ITUC-Africa General Secretary and his loved ones, offering their deepest condolences and support.

Mrs. Paulina Odigie’s legacy of love, kindness, and service will forever endure in the hearts of those who were fortunate enough to have known her.

In a tribute to her, the family explained how her resilience earned her the name “Iya Bendel”

They wrote: “Mama business interests varied until she finally settled for foodstuff wholesale at the popular Daleko Market in Isolo, Lagos State, where she earned the name Iya-Bendel, being the sole and first South-South woman (as at that time) in a trade dominated by mainly people from South-Western Nigeria (Yorubas). The name stuck quickly to her because she was quick to accommodate anyone from Bendel State that she comes across in the market. Her fellow traders often refer anyone from that region to her, as the mother of Bendel people.”