+ Messy Details Of Power Play In The Once Peaceful Lawmaking Body
When in 2019, all the 40 seats in the Lagos State House of Assembly was filled by the All Progressives Congress (APC), which also won the Governorship Election, the threes senatorial seats and majority seats in the Federal House of Representatives in the state, residents of the state had looked forward to a completely peaceful Assembly.
But events of recent times appear to have shown that all is not well in the state house of Assembly and that the once peaceful house is facing its own period of crisis.
The events that led to the current situation in the Assembly started with a report in a national newspaper that the leadership of the Assembly purchased 80 vehicles for the 40 lawmakers in the Assembly with a whooping N2.4 Billion within a year.
This eventually led to the opening of a can of worms that has since consumed two principal officers of the house and two other lawmakers in the Speaker Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa-led Assembly.
Precisely on Monday 9th March, 2020, the Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa announced the removal of two of its principal officers; the Chief Whip, Hon. Rotimi Abiru (Shomolu Constituency 2) and the Deputy Majority Leader, Hon. Olumuyiwa Jimoh (Apapa Constituency 2).
Two other members of the House, Moshood Oshun (Lagos Mainland Constituency II) and Kazeem Raheem Adewale (Ibeji Lekki Constituency II), were also suspended indefinitely during plenary on the fateful day.
Announcing the suspension of the members, Speaker Mudashiru Obasa, stated that the House as the hope of the people and the heartbeat of democracy should be well guided.
“I hereby invoke Section 68 and Section 70 4 (a, b) 2 and 3 of the House Rules in respect of gross misconduct, insubordination and action that can destablise this House. I hereby move that Moshood Oshun and Raheem Adewale be placed on suspension indefinitely,” the Speaker said.
The two decisions were supported through voice-votes by members present during plenary, and change in the leadership was contained in a letter read on the floor of the House by the Clerk, Azeez Sanni.
Sanni stated that the 26 members that signed the letter urged the House “to change the leadership of the House, including Rotimi Abiru as the Chief Whip and Olumuyiwa Jimoh as Deputy Majority Leader.”
According to him, the removal of the principal officers and suspension of two other members came amid speculation that there were critical issues that could divide the House and “that more revelations might come in the coming days.”
The two embattled principal officers of the Assembly have since been replaced by Hon. Noheem Adams (Eti Osa Constituency 1) as the Deputy Majority Leader and Mojisola Miranda (Apapa Constituency 1) as the new Chief Whip of the Assembly.
The issue later generated several controversies within and outside the Assembly premises with people insinuating that the development was a fallout of the relationship between Speaker Mudashiru Obasa and the senator representing Lagos East District, Senator Bayo Oshinowo, who is believed to have installed Obasa as Speaker in 2015 and in 2019.
Oshinowo was a lawmaker in the Assembly from 2003 to 2019 from Kosofe Constituency 1, before he left for Abuja in May, 2019 after winning senatorial election.
But this assertion was later debunked by the media office of Speaker Obasa in a statement.
Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa had insisted in the statement that the political empire of Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the National Leader of the ruling APC in Lagos remained intact and strong.
According to the Speaker, instilling discipline among members of the state’s House of Assembly did not equate with friction in any form between him and members of the party.
Obasa stressed that Tinubu had gone through a lot building the APC in Lagos and Nigeria, adding that nobody in his right senses would do anything to be a clog in the wheel of the party’s progress.
“Tinubu remains everything to the continued success of the party he built from the scratch and nurtured up to this moment.
“It is unarguable that his resilience, love for democracy, passion to see his foot-soldiers grow and belief in discipline cannot be measured,” he said.
Obasa maintained that the party in Lagos remained united and that what happened recently at the House of Assembly involving the removal of two principal officers and the suspension of two others was a measure to ensure that the legislature remained strengthened and its sanctity maintained.
“This is why during plenary on Monday, March 9, I made this proclamation: ‘The parliament is a heartbeat of every democratic system, its sanctity, integrity and positive reputation should be guided and protected, hence discipline is a key and where it’s lacking, the hope of the people fizzle,” he said.
To further prove that the House of Assembly is united, Obasa said 33 members of the House sat at plenary on Tuesday with the newly elected principal officers, including the deputy leader carrying out their tasks as expected.
The Speaker further denied any rift between him and Oshinowo, popularly called ‘Pepper’, who he described as a friend and mentor and with whose support he had excelled in legislative activities.
Emphasising this cordial relationship, Obasa said he was with Oshinowo on Tuesday and that they both drove in his convoy.
“I was the one that dropped Senator Oshinowo off on his way to Abuja yesterday. If there was a rift between us, will that happen?” The Speaker asked.
On Monday 16th March, 2020, the lawmakers in the Assembly later passed a vote of confidence on the Speaker on the purchase of vehicles worth N2.4 Billion for the members of the Assembly.
This followed series of media reports alleging that the cars were bought without due process and that there were manipulations in the process.
The issue of a petition by an NGO on the matter had been brought to the House during plenary by Hon. Rotimi Olowo (Shomolu Constituency 1) under Matter of Urgent Public Importance.
In a petition, which was said to have been sent to the office of the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) and addressed to the office of the chairman of the commission with the title:
“PETITION AGAINST LAGOS STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY SPEAKER, MUDHASIRU OBASA ON GROSS FINANCIAL MISCONDUCT, CRIMINAL BREACH OF PUBLIC TRUST AND ABUSE OF OFFICE,” the Executive Director, Comrade Buna Olaitan Isiak, of the petitioner, Human Rights Monitoring Agenda (HURMA) claimed that popular demand necessitated the petition.
“Further to a popular demand by some members of the public to our office, this petition is written to acquaint your agency EFCC, with the gross financial misconduct and the abuse of office being perpetrated by the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Honorable Mudashiru Obasa, for a thorough investigation so as to avert a further bleeding of the public treasury under his care and restore sanity in the functioning of the states legislative establishment.
“The Speakers desecration of his office for which a probe of his activities becomes necessary is in twofold: one, his financial recklessness and cornering of public funds through illegitimate means; and two, the corruption and compromise of laid down procedures and rules deliberately foisted on the workforce of the Assembly,” the petition read.
Hon. Olowo stated that he went through the petition, that it was malicious and that it is against the image of the House.
“It was stated that the House bought vehicles worth N2.4 Billion. Since I joined the House of Assembly, we always got two vehicles before the end of the Assembly.
“In 2007, I got a vehicle and a back up vehicle before the end of the Assembly. The vehicles are always budgeted for and it has been like that right from the time of Rt. Hon. Adeyemi Ikuforiji.
“We always told the Speaker that the 8th Assembly could not wind up without a back up vehicle.
“The Speaker used to tell to us that the resources were not available and we later got the back-up in April, 2019.
In the 9th Assembly, we just got our official vehicles in November/December, 2019.
“None of the 11 new members got two vehicles. We insisted on Prado Jeep and Mr. Speaker didn’t want to give us, but we insisted on it.
“We are all beneficiaries of the largesse and yet we go about making insinuations and leaking information to the whole world,” he said.
While adding that the write-up and petition was written in bad light, he said that there was no iota of truth in it.
“We also said that the buses that we were using for committee works were bad and we insisted that he should buy a new set and he did.
Hon. Olowo then moved that having appreciated Speaker Obasa to be a democratic, a responsible and a reliable leader, a vote of confidence should be passed on him, and this was supported by majority the lawmakers with the raising up of their hands.
Speaker Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa later stated that the issue was not about official vehicles, but the backup vehicles and the money spent purchasing them.
“The official vehicles for the 9th Assembly was the issue. It was a deliberate action to paint the House in bad light. The people that stole the vouchers that were leaked to the press is the issue.
“I thank you for all you have said about the petition. We have discussed issues relating to divulging the discussions in the House.
“I said that the issue that came out in the Guardian Newspaper is traceable to Hon. Moshood Oshun.
“He was asking me for documents of the vehicle given to him, he was the one that called me on the telephone that his vehicle was seized by Customs Officer.
“I once said that someone stole the vouchers of the vehicles. Where did he get it from if not for the role played by a member of the House.
“The writer of the petition is close to Hon. Olumuyiwa Jimoh. Some of the things he wrote were parts of what we have discussed,” he said.
Speaker Obasa then declared that there is no crisis in the Lagos State House of Assembly, “if there is crisis, we would not have this number of people in the Assembly that we have today.
“We have been sitting and we have been having parliamentary meetings. We must stand by the truth and the truth would set you free. There is no decision we take that we did not discuss in the Assembly. There is nothing hidden about the purchase of the vehicles, you can cross-check the facts.
“Hon. Rotimi Abiru said that it is a failure on the part of the leadership of the Assembly that they were not given backup cars and houses then,” he said.
The motion of Hon. Olowo was supported by all the lawmakers, who spoke on the matter and they all agreed that the Speaker was on the right path, adding that they all took the decision over the purchase of the cars together.
However, the coming days would determine if the embattled lawmakers would get a respite and if the matter would continue to linger just as the report of the committee set-up on the matter is being awaited by watchers of events in the Assembly.
EXCLUSIVE: Children Custody Mess! Man Drags Mother-In-Law To Court Over Rape Allegations
Oluwaseun Olomo, the man at the center of a streaming controversy of an alleged rape of his son and daughter reported by a popular online medium-Saharareporters, has denied the allegation, saying that his mother-in-law, Mrs. Elizabeth Iluyomade was behind the plot as she wanted to have the custody of the children at all cost.
Olomo’s wife, Mrs. Elizabeth Oluwamodupe Olomo, who he married on the 22nd day of December, 2012, reportedly met her untimely death on the 3rd day of June, 2019, when she had a bike accident at Ikeja along and died instantly.
The marriage produced two children, Fiyinfoluwa, a boy and now five years old and Folakemi, two years old.
However, Oluwamodupe’s tragic death appeared to have led to some messy developments between Mr. Oluwaseun Olomo and Mrs. Elizabeth Iluyomade over issues bothering on the custody of the children.
Mrs. Iluyomade had alleged in a report that went viral on the social media that Olomo sexually molested his two children and the report was entitled; “Father Absconds With Children After Raping Them Multiple Times.”
The report had left tongues wagging with many Nigerians wondering what could have led to such an ugly development.
However, Mr. Oluwaseun Olomo has denied ever molesting his children, stating that it was a product of his mother-in-law, who fabricated the tale so that she could be given the custody of the two children.
Olomo’s defence was contained in a petition written by his lawyers, D.J Fadesere & Co to the Director, Lagos State Office of the Public Defender at 2-8 Iyun Road, off Funsho Williams Barracks, Surulere, Lagos State.
The petition dated 29th July, 2019 was entitled; “Petition Against Mrs. Elizabeth Modupe Iluyomade on Abduction, Threat To Kill, Assault Occasioning Grievous Bodily Harm And False Imprisonment.”
The legal counsel said in the petition that the marriage between Oluwaseun Olomo and Elizabeth Modupe Olomo was blessed with two children (Fiyinfoluwa Olomo “M” 5 years old and Folakemi Olomo “F” 2 years old), both of who they said attend Gosamite Nursery and Primary School, Santos Layout, Akowonjo.
They alleged that on the 5th day of June, 2019, Olomo’s late wife’s sister and Aunt (Bimpe Olisaemeka and Aunty Bose) went to his house at No. 3, Gafaru Banire Street, Egbeda and informed him that his deceased wife’s mother wanted to see his children.
“That our Client parents, together with the children and his late wife’s sister and Aunt went to our Client’s mother-in-law’s house to console her over the death of her daughter.
“That his mother-in-law thereafter asked them to leave the children behind with her for some time.
“That on the 9th day of June, 2019 our Client went to his mother-in-law’s place to pick his children, but she refused to release the children to him.
“That his late wife was buried on the 12th day of June, 2019, but the children were not allowed to pay the last respect to their mother as they have been in solitary confinement since then,” the petition read.
It was alleged further that on 14th day of July, 2019, Mr. Olomo again went to his mother-in-law’s house to pick his children, but that he was denied access to his children and that rather his mother-in-law attacked him, tore his cloth and “threatened to kill him the way he killed his wife.”
Mr. Olomo was said to have reported the incident at Ago Palace Police Station in Okota and that his mother-in-law was invited, but that she refused to honour the invitation.
He was said to have also reported the matter to the Welfare Board at Alimosho and that Mrs. Iluyomade was invited on the 15th of July, 2019, but that she refused the honour.
It was added in the petition that “presently, our Client does not know the condition of his children as he has been denied access to his children.”
D.J Fadesere & Co also wrote a press release entitled; “Rejoinder on Case of Criminal Defamation Of Character Against Mrs. Elizabeth Module Iluyomade.”
In the press release, which was dated 12th March, 2020, !rs. Elizabeth Iluyomade was accused of defaming the character of Mr. Oluwaseun Olomo.
Some of the statements in the petition written to the DPP were repeated in the press release with additional allegations against Mrs. Iluyomade.
Mrs. Iluyomade was accused of framing the issue of defilement of the children by their father, Mr. Oluwaseun Olomo.
The counsel stated in the press release Mrs. Iluyomade had written an appeal for assistance on the matter to the Office of Public Defender dated 16th day of July, 2019.
Mrs. Iluyomade was quoted to have requested that the office should prevent Mr. Olomo from having custody of the children.
She was said to have stated that Seun Olomo could not take proper care of the children and that he would not even have time to spend with them due the nature of his job as Uber Driver.
A meeting was reportedly called by the Office of Public Defender on 6th August, 2019, where several people were present including Mrs. Iluyomade and Mr. Seun Olomo.
The Director of the Office of Public Defender, Mrs. Adeyemi was said to have directed that Terms of Settlement be drafted stating the custody of the children be granted to Mr. Olomo being their biological father, while their grandmother, Mrs. Iluyomade be granted access to the children one weekend in a month and half each holiday period and the terms were to be signed on 19th day of August, 2019.
“Surprisingly on the 19th day of August, 2019, when our Client alongside his parents and counsel got to the OPD, the Director of the OPD, Mrs. Adeyemi informed us that our Client’s children (Fiyinfoluwa Olomo and Folakemi Olomo) have been defiled.
“That at no point in time during the meeting of the 6th day of August, 2019 had Mrs. Iluyomade mentioned the case of defilement of the children. At this time, the children had been with her for over six weeks.
“That the Director of the Office of Public Defender informed our Client at that point that the case had been transferred to the Gender Unit of the Lagos Command of the Nigerian Police Ikeja,” the counsel said in the press release.
It was stated further in the release that on the 19th of August, the officials from the Office of the Public Defender did not allow Mr. Seun Olomo to see his children “based on the false allegation of defilement crudely and maliciously orchestrated by Mrs. Iluyomade and the video recorded by inr Anika Iluyomade (out Client’s sister-in-law).”
Mr. Olomo was allegedly rough handled and bundled into the Office of the Public Defender’s car and treated like a common criminal by officials from the Office of the Public Defender.
It was added in the release that consequent on the accusation by Mrs. Iluyomade, Inspector Olakunle Orebe, who is the Investigating Police Officer (IPO) took both Mr. Olomo and Mrs. Iluyomade to the Gender Office at the Lagos State Police Command, where they wrote statements.
Mrs. Iluyomade was accused of not reporting at the police station on 20th of August,p as agreed upon and accused of prevent in the police from conducting a proper test on the children to ascertain the veracity of her claim.
The counsel disclosed in the release that the two children were subsequently taken to welfare home after obtaining a Care Order on the 20th day of August and that no Care Order was served on Mr. Olomo.
“That on no occasion did our Client’s children complain of any pain in their private parts, when they were with the Client and his late wife.
“That a two-year old girl cannot be constantly penetrated and be able to move easily.
“That no official of the Office of the Public Defender went to Mirabel Centre with Mrs. Iluyomade, when she went to conduct the said examination on our Client’s children.
“That Mrs. Iluyomade, who did not allow the police to carry out proper investigation on this matter continued to pressure the Police to prosecute our client,” the release read.
They alleged in the release that the allegation was “just the devilish thought and plan of Mrs. Iluyomade to be the custody of our Client’s children.”
It was further alleged that Mr. Seun Olomo was charged with the offence of defilement before the Magistrate Court, Ogba wot Charge No: CR/MISC/B/42/2019.
According to the release, the Magistrate, Mrs. B.O Ogunsanmi stood down the case and invited Mr. Olomo, Mrs. Iluyomade, the prosecutor and the defence counsel and OPD’s lawyer (Mrs. Ibikunle) to her chambers , where she interviewed the children.
“That the children reiterated that their father did not do anything to them and she asked the children to go and meet their father. The children excitedly went to hug their father whom they had missed.
The elder child, Fiyinfoluwa was to have repeated their answers to the question asked them when they went back to court.
The court was said to have rules in favour of Mr. Seun Olomo and dismissed the action filed by Mrs. Iluyomade to wrestle custody from a biological father.
“Mrs. Iluyomade filed an appeal against the judgement of the court. This appeal is still pending. Regrettably, rather than wait for the outcome of the matter before the court, she resorted to cheap blackmail on the social media with active connivance of some hungry gutter journalists to assassinate our Client’s character in the estimation of right-thinking members of the society,” the release read.
In the story circulated in the social media, it was stated that the children had revealed to a doctor how their father forcefully had sex with them with bruises on their private parts showing forceful penetration.
Oluwaseun Olomo, a resident of Egbeda, a densely populated neighbourhood in Lagos, was alleged to have disappeared with his two children (a male and a female) after defiling them on multiple occasions.
Olomo was said to have also successfully won over the police to “aid his immoral act and obtain a favourable court order.”
It was alleged that the children had revealed to a doctor how their father forcefully had sex with them with bruises on their private parts showing forceful penetration.
“The matter was charged to court after it was transferred to the Gender Unit of the Lagos State Police Command but Olomo was described as a responsible man and granted the custody of the children.
“Meanwhile, it was discovered that the Investigating Police Officer in charge of the case, Olakunle Orebe, had altered some of the evidences in the case and also declined to present video testimonies of the kids to the judge,” the report added.
Why I Didn’t Hit Oluwo When He Attacked Me – Oba Akinropo, Agbowu of Ogbagbaa
Oluwo of Iwo, Oba Abdulrasheed Akanbi, allegedly attacked his colleague, Agbowu of Ogbagbaa, Oba Sikirulahi Akinropo, at a meeting in Osogbo, Osun State recently. Akinropo speaks on his side of the story.
You were allegedly attacked by the Oluwo of Iwo, Oba Abdulrasheed Akanbi, at a meeting in Osogbo recently, but he has said he acted in self defence, what really happened?
It was not just a meeting, it was a peace meeting called by the Assistant Inspector General of Police in Osogbo. The meeting was not the first we would have. The former AIG (Leye Oyebade) once called us for such a meeting. The then AIG told us the police would only resolve criminal cases, but as a Yoruba man, he urged us to settle the matter at the palace of Oluwo of Iwo. It followed a petition against us (some traditional rulers) by Oluwo. But all the royal fathers that Oluwo alleged were selling land in his domain realised that the security situation didn’t favour us. So, we resolved to use the chieftaincy hall at the Iwo Local Government Secretariat for the meeting and we made provision for adequate security at the venue.
We were seated already at the venue when suddenly Oluwo along with his drummers and some thugs arrived at the venue.
The policemen that stood guard at the entrance told Oluwo he could not enter the venue with thugs and drummers but he insisted on doing so. They all entered and we allowed them in because we might be harmed. About 30 of us (monarchs from Iwo, Olaoluwa and Ayedire) left the venue through the back door.
Immediately we left the place, the then AIG arrived at the premises. After sensing the situation around the premises and the fact that he did not meet us on our seats, the AIG also left.
The former AIG wanted to call for another peace meeting before he was transferred so he could not do so. Then the present AIG, Bashir Makama, came on board. He also decided to continue with the peace meeting and wrote to us. He invited us to his office for another meeting on Friday.
We all obliged him. At the meeting, he told us that being the custodians of our culture and leaders, we should allow peace to reign. Oluwo then stood up to talk and said, as the leader of all Obas in Ayedire, Olaoluwa and the remaining towns in the area, other Obas were selling lands and he didn’t want that to happen anymore.
But we told him that the lands we sold belonged to our towns and not Iwo. The Olu of Ile-Igbo Kingdom said he only sold lands in Ile-Igbo. Onigege also said the same thing, and I also said the lands I sold belonged to Ogbagbaa, my domain.
Alhaji Kamoru, the Chairman of Iwo Local Government Area, sat between me and him (Oluwo). Those present at the meeting were Officer-in-Charge (Legal), Osun State Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, representative of the state Commissioner for Lands, AIG and the Obas Oluwo wrote a petition against.
The Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, while speaking, said since the issue had to do with land, we should rather go to court instead of a peace meeting. He said he would report the matter to the governor.
But Oluwo said should they do that, they were calling for war. I did not even see it coming; he just sprang forward from his seat, and asked why I was speaking while he was talking.
He left his seat and the Iwo Local Government Chairman was trying to restrain him, but he pushed him away and started punching me where I sat. It was the AIG that came to my rescue by pulling him away from me.
Did he use any sharp object on you that inflicted the wound on your face?
Well, he didn’t hold a knife when he attacked me, but I think the ring he wore or the car key he held while beating me gave me the wound on my face.
His allegation was that you and other Obas were trespassing on the domain of Oluwo to sell land, how true is that?
The lands I sold solely belonged to Ogbagbaa and I have never trespassed on his land. In fact, the Onigege, whose domain shares boundary with Iwo, didn’t trespass on Iwo. Oluwo also wrote a petition against the Onisara of Fesu and other Obas in the area.
Did you come up with any resolution at the meeting?
We couldn’t come up with any resolution since it ended abruptly. Like I said earlier, it was the AIG that pulled him away from me. I told the AIG that assaulting me in front of him was tantamount to assaulting me in front of the President. He even attempted to come back to where I sat to beat me again, but the AIG told his aides to lead him out of the venue of the meeting.
Oluwo alleged that you called him unprintable names and tried to stick your staff into his eye, is that true?
That’s an outright lie. He was just trying to defend himself.
Why didn’t you not try to fight back to defend yourself while he assaulted you?
I have been a traditional ruler for 24 years and I know the worth of the institution I represent. Have you ever heard of an Oba exchanging blows or fighting? I can’t be part of that madness; that was why I held my peace. If I also had fought back, I would have constituted a nuisance.
We heard you were treated at Trauma Centre of Osun State General Hospital, Asubiaro, is it that serious or were you blowing it out of proportion?
Not at all! Except for the cut on my cheek, I don’t have any other cut. But I went to receive treatment because of the way he assaulted and punched me. I also received a tetanus injection to prevent a viral infection. I was supposed to be on bed rest and not return to my place on Friday, but I didn’t want to spread panic in my community. That was why I left for Ogbagbaa. I went back to the hospital this morning (Saturday) to continue my treatment.
What do you think is the solution to the problem?
Since the incidence happened in the presence of government representatives, I believe they must take adequate action on it. So I am expecting what the governor and other concerned authorities will do about the manner Oluwo treated me.
Royal War! Oba Akinruntan Carpets Ooni Of Ife For Corrupting Yoruba History, “Igbos Are Not Our Lineage, Olugbo Schools Ooni
The Olugbo of Ugbo Kingdom in Ondo State, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Frederick Obateru Akinruntan has blown hot over claims by Ooni of Ife in Osun State, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi that the igbos are owners of Ile-Ife.
In a letter written through his Personal Secretary, Otunba Adeyemi, Oba Akinruntan stated that by divine providence, the stool upon which Ooni of Ife sits is very highly elevated and that the gravity of his words in Yorubaland and indeed everywhere in Nigeria held awesome reverence attached to it by virtue of the imperial labours of his forebears, and indeed, the forebears of all Yoruba ethnic groups.
“I must reiterate Kabiyesi, that while it is very important that we must foster inter ethnic cohesion between Yorubas and Ibos, even as it seems to be a political dynamic plan from the elite or powerful oligarchy; such plans or other motives, even of financial gains, should not use Your Majesty as a tool neither should that objective or any other be achieved using Yoruba historical heritage as the sacrificial lamb.
“Kabiyesi, falsehood remains falsehood, even when it is dressed in gold,” he said in the letter.
The billionaire oil magnate and owner of Obat Oil stated in the letter that he was quite certain “that the Obalufe, an aborigine of Ugbomokun (Ife), Alade and Alaje Iremo, the Ooni Ode and traditional Prime Minister of Ife, who is very knowledgeable as well as many Obas, High Chiefs and Elders of Ife as well as Kings and Kingdoms in Yorubaland are having great concerns or worries about the several unfounded claims which you have brought to Yoruba history since you ascended the throne; the latest of which is your assertions of the aboriginality of Ibos in Ife and their ownership of Aje.”
Oba Akinruntan added that this has brought so much tears to the eyes and so much sorrow to the heart that seemingly, despite the fact that Ooni is the greatest beneficiary of the culture, custom, traditions and historical heritage of Yorubaland today, he seemed to be “so determined to remove Yoruba landmarks and destroy our historical heritage which would result into a generational catastrophy and be averse to the progress of Yoruba sons and daughters.”
“Kabiyesi, Your Majesty, permit me to call out your Director of Media Services, Mr Moses Olafare; the Traditional Guide to Ooni of Ife, Oloye Tajudeen and all others who have a duty in the scheme of things with Ooni to ensure that he does not live a life, say or do anything that will cast aspersions on the exalted throne he sits upon or undermine the safety or cultural fortunes of Yorubas.
“Do imagine if the Personal Assistant to the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) does not understand the fundamentals of Forex Differentials, Fiscal and Monetary Policies…What a blunder it could create in the P.A’s service to the Governor.
“For Mr Moses Olafare, inclusive in your duty is for you to be adept in the profile and proceedings of your Principal.
“You must know the history of Ife like the back of your hands so that when or if Kabiyesi makes an incorrect statement, you will ensure that he is protected by having such false assertions out of reach from the media, until Kabiyesi makes further consultations.
“For Oloye Tajudeen, I feel quite sorry for the Ife Palace if the Traditional Guide to Ooni of Ife does not know basic historiography of Ugbomokun (Ife). Kindly read what happened to the last son of Noah who did not cover the nakedness of his father,” the letter read in part.
Olugbo of Ugbo made reference to a piece in a national newspaper, published on the 20th of March, 2019, which he said had it that Oloye Tajudeen said that the first wife of Oduduwa is Yeyemoolu, “who turned to the pool of water in Ife Palace today.”
He then said that “why persons like you choose to corrupt Yoruba history remains a mystery to me.”
“Does it mean that there is a deliberate scheme from the Palace of Ife to destroy the truth about the authentic history of Yorubaland, which establishes a Pre-Oduduwa era.
“Little wonder, you are determined to sell the Yoruba to the Ibos like a commodity in the market.
“Oloye Tajudeen, Judas Iscariot did not survive it, and so will all those who scheme against Yoruba cultural heritage.
“We have said it severally, and I must reiterate that the quest of the Olugbo on the truth about the peopling and authentic Pre-dynastic history of Yorubaland is not for self aggrandizement or personal gratification.
“We are telling our story and setting the records straight. There is no need for a scheme from the Palace of Ife to sell Yoruba heritage to Ibos in a roforofo scuffle.
“Kaka Ki Eku Ma Je Sese, A Fi Se Awadanu is uncalled for here. Even a child in Ile-Ife today knows that Yeyemoolu is the first wife of Oranfe Onile Ina, Onile Ori Oke, Okanranjigbo, Ebora Ti N Je Ewe Gbegbe and subsequently the first wife of Osangangan Obamakin, who was the first son of Oranfe, the first Olugbo and direct forefather of His Imperial Majesty, Oba (Dr.) Frederick E. Obateru Akinruntan, CON,” the letter read.
The Oba added in the letter that Yeyemoolu, Osara and Akinsin were the wives of Osangangan Obamakin, and thatbthey all turned to pools and rivers of water.
He said further that the letter would not permit him to give descriptive analysis of the period, place and reasons each of them subsequently turned to water.
The letter reads further: “immediately a new Ooni has been determined and installed, his first assignment is to be betrothed to Yeyemoolu, the aboriginal queen of Ugbomokun (Ife) so as to receive the blessings of Oranfe, the Progenitor of the Yoruba as well as Kutukutu Oba Ugbo, Osangangan Obamakin before the Ooni can sleep in that Palace else, the Ooni will join his ancestors in 3 Days.
“Oloye Tajudeen, amateur or false historians and propagandists like you force persons like me to bring out facts that would have been concealed for initiates but that must be said to counter the daring falsehood from you.
“So as it is, Yeyemoolu is the First and Permanent wife of every Ooni which all other wives and the Ooni must seek blessings from on a daily basis.
“I am very sure that even Oba Orarotimi Mulato, the Obaluru of Ife, who is the custodian of Oranfe Deity, a monarch who would do anything to please the Ife Palace no matter what it takes, will not join you in your scheme of lies. Ask Kabiyesi Obalufe, Kabiyesi Obaluru, Kabiyesi Obalesun and revert on the position of Yeyemoolu.”
Olugbo stressed in the letter that the published interview of Ooni Ogunwusi was “void/empty of facts about your assertions on the aboriginality of Ibos in Yorubaland, and rather than invite the Olugbo for clarification as you have done, I would rather have you set me up with your aides amidst Yoruba scholars of note so I could educate them at my level and compare notes.”
He added that he would have expected Ooni to draw citations from Anthropology, Archaeology, Yoruba Cosmology, Panegyric, Ifa Corpus and Dialectology, to mention a few in support of the Ibo agenda, so that jurors could compare them with against volumes of facts which scholars and eminent academicians have affirmed points to the connectivity between Ugbomokun (Ife) and Ugbo-Ilaje in the coastal part of present day Ondo Syate where the Olugbo of Ugbo-Ilaje is the King.
“Kabiyesi Alayeluwa, I will only dwell on fundamental dialectology which studies the evolution of languages.
“Linguistic historians have theorized that the vocabulary, diction and pronunciation of Ugbo-Ilaje dialect of Yoruba Language bears 90% similarity to the Ikedu, which was the aboriginal language of ancient Ugbomokun (Ife) as ascertained by Professor I. A. Akinjogbin.
“Linguistic science also affirmed that even present day core Ife dialect has 85% cognitive resemblance to Ugbo-Ilaje dialect. Kabiyesi Oonirinsa, to what percentage is ebuka and ezeokoli similar to Ife dialect or even Yoruba Language.
“It is rather amusing Your Majesty, that you are not aware that in the book, “Encyclopedia of the Yoruba,” written by Professor Toyin Falola and Professor Akintunde Akinyemi, the Term or Word ‘Yoruba’ was not in our vocabulary until sometime in the middle of the 19th Century when the European Missionaries and Explorers sought a common name by which many tribes of the same ethnic group who spoke various dialects of the same language could be called.
“The unifying name they chose to call us was Yoruba. We used to be Ugbomokun in Pre-dynastic times and later Ife, and migrations led to creation of many tribes like Ulaje, Ujebu, Ukale, Ujesha, Ekiti, etc, and generally we were Omo Kaaro Ojiire, confirmable from the works of Professor I.A Akinjogbin, Professor Banji Akintoye, Professor Ishola Olomola, Professor Akin Alao, Professor Olukoya Ogen and many others,” the Oba said in the letter.
Olugbo revealed further that at that time, each tribe spoke separate dialects, but that the British Missionaries evolved the common Yoruba, “which we all speak today which began sometime at the middle of the 19th Century.”
He pointed out that according to Professor Sope Oyelaran, different dialects of the same language evolved before the advent of the British and that of particular importance is the note that “we did not have the letter ‘I’ as a starter for words rather we had the letter ‘U’ in our vocabulary.”
“Kabiyesi, Ijesha, Ekiti, Ife, Ilaje, Ikale, Igbomina and many tribes used the letter U. Ujesha, Ulesha, Ufe, Ulaje, Ukale, and Ile (House) was Ule, Isu (Yam) was Usu, Akarigbo was Akarugbo and obviously Igbo that you referred to in the works of Professor I. A. Akinjogbin referred solely to Ugbo.
“Your Majesty, how could you miss this fundamental point in Yoruba dialect formation and subsequently mislead the entire Yoruba. Eti Ti O Gbo Alo Ko Le Gbo Abo. Kabiyesi, Akeregbe Ti Fo, Omi Inu Re Danu.
“Kabiyesi Alayeluwa Oonirinsa, we have asked you to show us the orirun of Ibo in Ife, where in Ideta Ile or Ideta Oko did they migrate from, if you say they are from Obatala?
“KabIyesi, who led them out of Ife, where was the first place of Ibo settlement in the ancient Ibo forest. Nibo Ni Orirun Ibo, Ta A Lo Ko Won J’ade Ni Ife, Ni Ibo Ni Won Koko Tedo Si.
“Kabiyesi Alayeluwa, let me digress into culture and tradition a little bit. Opa T’olugbo, Aja T’Oghonne.
T’ibe Ka Re Ufe, Ile Ti Oronmakin,” he said.
It was stated in the letter that the ancient ‘Are crown’ was worn by Oranfe and prominently by Osangamgam Obamakin, the first Olugbo.
The letter revealed further that eminent scholars had ascertained that Oduduwa did not wear the Are Crown, and that neither did he rule Ife from the Palace today, but from his quarters in Idio community because of the Pre-dynastic crisis of that time that culminated in the Obatala-Obawinrin bloc against the Oduduwa-Obameri-Obadio bloc.
It was explained in the letter that it was the crisis that led to the Moremi Episode in the history of Ife, adding that up till today, the right to the crown of Ife is bequeathed to Obalufon (Obalara), the last son of Olugbo, and the rights in Ile-Ugbo performed by the aborigines legitimate Ooni’s stay in that Palace because of the truce and accord of peace between Osangangan Obamakin and Oduduwa.
“So It brings tears to eyes that you could desecrate Ile-Ugbo, which according to Professor Akinjogbin, is the most sacred part of Ife Palace occupied by the rulers of Ugbomokun by ascribing it to Ibos of South East Nigeria.
“This is a great disservice to our deities and ancestors.
“Kabiyesi, can the Ibos show us how the Oro Isese is performed. Kabiyesi, Olugbo, Osangamgam Obamakin, husband of Moremi gave her the Aja and initiated her into Oro…Moremi Ti O N Fi Aja Se Oro. Which of the Ibo Kings can describe the Oro or give the Oro corpus.
“Kabiyesi Oonirinsa, Ofun Alaje does not refer to the Ibos of South East Nigeria and I will make an elaborate submission to Your Majesty on this quite soon,” the letter read.
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