Olubadan, Ajimobi at loggerheads over new chiefs

Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji, Aje Ogungunniso I
Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji, Aje Ogungunniso I

Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji, Aje Ogungunniso I, yesterday, staged a roadshow in Ibadan metropolis, ostensibly to affirm the indivisibility of the Olubadan stool during his reign.

The monarch reportedly passed through major markets and roads across the city and vowed never to surrender his sovereignty to any other monarch in the land.

Oba Adetunji’s action on Monday, was against the backdrop of Governor Abiola Ajimobi’s installation of 21 new kings in Ibadan, Oyo State, on Sunday, August 27, 2017.

The monarch reportedly took off from his Popoyemoja palace, and went through Oja’ba, Beere, Oje, Agodi Gate, Agbeni, Ogunpa, Dugbe, Molete and other environs.

The paramount ruler of Ibadanland reportedly waved his horse tail to the people, who, in turn, hailed him.

He had earlier received scores of Mogajis (family heads) who paid solidarity visit to his palace, to throw their weight behind his objection to the review of the 1957 Olubadan of Ibadanland Chieftaincy Declaration that has seen Ibadan having 33 new kings that are subject to Olubadan, among whom 21 have been installed.

His Director of Public Affairs, Adeola Oloko dismissed insinuations of a “roadshow,” to Daily Sun, yesterday night.

He insisted that the monarch “went for an occasion and his people hailed him. In response, he waved his horsetail at them. Besides, Oba Adetunji has shops inDugbe, Ogunpa and other places and, on his way back, he passed through those areas and Molete and he simply waved his horsetail to the people who hailed him…”

In another development, the monarch directly replied governor Ajimobi that he is not a politician and will not be involved in partisan politics.

Oba Adetunji stated this, in response to an advice by the governor, during last Sunday’s installation of 21 new kings in Ibadanland, that the monarch should distance himself from partisan politics.

He advised the state government not to paint him with the tar brush of petty partisan politics, as he is a monarch and not a politician

The Olubadan, in a statement by Oloko, said: “As a monarch, I am a father of all, irrespective of sex, ethnic and ideological persuasions. Since Friday March 4, 2016, when I ascended the exalted throne of Olubadan, I have opened the gate of our palace wide, to all manner of people. If you belong to the All Progressives Congress (APC), the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Labour, Accord and/or more, you are most welcome. So, politics has nothing to do with my resistance or opposition to the chieftaincy review spearheaded by the Oyo State Government.”

Oba Adetunji also described as “unfortunate,” comments by the governor that recent utterances from the palace were tending towards politics, adding if the state governor has any evidence of such, he should provide it. The monarch insisted there was no press statement issued from his media office “which did not enjoy my blessing before it was made public. While I am aware that people react to age differently, I am not old enough to be misinterpreted by anybody, even at 89.

“Governor Ajimobi stated that he invited us to the governor’s office over this matter and visited me in the palace later. While this is true, I wish to respectfully state that the Boade Panel was inaugurated on May 19, 2017, governor Ajimobi invited me to the governor’s office on Wednesday, June 14, 2017 after the panel had sat for four weeks.

“At that meeting, the governor, the ‘high chiefs’ and State House Correspondents would recall my opposition to the chieftaincy review. My question is; did anybody put words in my mouth in that recorded tape? When he invited me to his office and visited me in the palace on Sunday, June 18, 2017, the Boade Panel was almost through with its job. When we met at the inner chamber, what the state governor came to tell me was that he knew I should have been consulted first. So, it is not true that I was consulted, as claimed by him. If I had been consulted, this error would have been avoided. The desecration of the crown would have been averted.”

Oba Adetunji, who congratulated all Ibadan people for keeping the peace despite the alleged brazen abuse of Ibadan custom and tradition stated that “these times would pass.”

He also commended all his brother-monarchs for their solidarity and cooperation, saying his opposition to the mass coronation exercise was to prevent breakdown of law and order, complication and dire consequences in Ibadan chieftaincy system.

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