By Bankole Shakirudeen Adeshina
Pan Yoruba socio-cultural organisation, Afenifere, has lent its voice to the ongoing crisis between the Oyo State Governor, Senator Isiaka Ajimobi and the Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Soliu Adetunji, cautioning the latter to show restraint and respect for culture, age and the throne
In an exclusive interview with CITY VOICE, Publicity Secretary of the group, Yinka Odumakin, said it was Afenifere’s duty to reconcile the parties in the interest of peace and preservation of heritage.
He, however, expressed displeasure over Ajimobi’s decision to go all the way to Abuja to report the Olubadan to President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said had the governor consulted the Olubadan properly and harmonized his concerns before going ahead to install over 20 newly elevated kings, the crisis wouldn’t have been.
Odumakin said: “the Governor of Oyo State, Senator Ajimobi is my good brother and friend. But I think before he went ahead with the distribution of the forms, he should have carried the Olubadan along. For goodness sake, we are not talking of administration of local government here, but the whole of traditional institution in Ibadan land. If there were objections from the Olubadan then, he should have ironed it out before going ahead to elevate over 20 chiefs to position of beaded kings. Honestly now, I don’t understand the rationale behind that.”
Insisting that one of the values of the Yoruba race is respect for elders, Odumakin said he was surprised to see the governor going to Abuja to report the Olubadan to President Buhari.
He said, “I think the governor has a duty to get back to Ibadan and resolve the matter within the Ibadan traditional institution. And he should ensure that there is smooth operation and synergy between all the traditional institutions in Ibadan and without much interference from the government.
“This is more so because in a year or two, his tenure as the state governor would be over. He should be more concerned as to how history would record his deeds.”
Afenifere, Odunmakin further added, condemned the recent gunshot in the palace of the Olubadan, describing it as “abominable and a violation of the throne of not only that of the Olubadan but the entire traditional institution of Yoruba race. And we frown at it. Afenifere has challenged the Governor to speedily investigate the matter and ensure that the culprits are brought to justice.”