The chairman of the Ekiti State Council of Traditional Rulers and Alawe of Ilawe-Ekiti, Oba Adebanji Ajibade Alabi has described the intervention made by the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi over the face-off between the state government and some monarchs as an act of ignorance calling on Governor Seyi Makinde to prevail on him to stay off the issue.
Oba Alabi noted that Alaafin’s letter was laced with misrepresentation and inaccurate facts, urging governor Makinde to ” stop the Alaafin from his meddlesomeness in the internal affairs of Ekiti Obas.”
It will be recalled that the state government had last week through the office of the bureau of chieftaincy affairs issued a 72-hour query to about eleven ‘Pelupelu Obas’ individually over alleged insubordination.
The affected Obas include Ewi of Ado-Ekiti Oba Rufus Adejugbe; Oloye of Oye Oba Oluwole Ademolaju; Elekole of Ikole Oba Adewumi Fasiku; Elemure of Emure Oba Emmanuel Ogunleye; Ajero of Ijero Oba Joseph Adewole; Alara of Aramoko, Oba Adegoke Adeyemi.
Others are: Ogoga of Ikere-Ekiti Oba Samuel Adejimi, Olomuo of Omuo Oba Noah Omonigbehin; Alaaye of Efon Oba Emmanuel Aladejare, Ologotun of Oguntun Oba Samuel Oyebade and Olujudo of Ido-Faboro, Oba Ayorinde Ilori-Faboro.
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The ‘Pelupelu Obas’ who had been at loggerheads with the government following the appointment of Alawe of Ilawe, Oba Alabi in 2019 as the chairman council of traditional rulers in the state.
They approached the court arguing that the appointment of Alawe was against the chieftaincy law of the state and subsequently shunned all activities of the government including meetings of the council of traditional rulers.
Alaafin in his letter to Dr. Kayode Fayemi dated March 12, 2020, warned the Governor against treating the traditional institution in Yorubaland with levity.
Alaafin said unlike, in some tribes, where there was nothing attached to their traditional institutions, the Yoruba traditional institution was “ancestral and spiritual.”
Oba Adeyemi said he wrote on behalf of other prominent traditional rulers in Yorubaland, including the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi; the Awujale of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Adetona; and the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Gbadebo Adedotun.
But Alawe in his letter to Governor Makinde titled, ‘ Request to Stop Undue Interference on His Majesty, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi in the Internal Affairs of Ekiti Obas’ and dated March 14, 2020, he said the number of Pelupelu Obas had not been static, affirming that Alaafin goofed in his submission that leadership of the council had always been from the 16 ‘pelupelu’ Obas.
In the letter made available to Tribune Online, the chairman of Obas’ council said, ” Unfortunately and appallingly, Alaafin stated that his source of information was by “Hearsay” Yet he refused to verify his erroneous fact before falsely accusing Governor Fayemi of neglect. He refused to say those he considers as subordinate Obas. Subordinate to who?
“Alaafin is no doubt an Oba who enjoys stirring controversies and crisis where there are none. He is, without doubt, a meddlesome interloper who is bent on exporting the crisis he engineered in old Oyo State during which the Traditional Council was unable to hold a single meeting as a result of leadership tussle between him and the OONI of Ife until Osun was carved out of old Oyo State.
“Worse still and under him, the Oyo State Council of Traditional Rulers has not held a meeting once in four (4) years under his Chairmanship as a result of his inability to foster peace, unity, and cohesion among the Obas. How does he give what he does not have? Ekiti Monarchs are not Alaafin’s AJELES hence his current voyage into internal affairs of Ekiti Obas is highly unwarranted.
“Ekiti State Council of obas is highly offended by the vituperation poured on our Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi through Alaafin’s unsolicited intervention in purely domestic affairs of our Council. Alaafin has no moral right nor justification to interfere in the matter of Traditional Rulers administration in Ekiti State.
“The Traditional Council of Obas in Ekiti State is therefore passionately appealing to His Excellency Engr. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State to call Alaafin to order and to desist forthwith from meddling in the internal affairs of Ekiti Obas, especially as the matter is pending before a Court of competent jurisdiction. Moreover, the little disagreement amongst Ekiti Obas has not affected the functionality of our Traditional Council. We hold our meetings statutorily unlike the Traditional Council under Alaafin that has long been grounded.
“It is pertinent to put on record that, Governor Kayode Fayemi met the present classification of Obas on the ground in Ekiti State and has not added one Oba to the class of PeluPelu Obas. The various classifications had been done by previous Administrations through the 1947 Gazette, 1948 Gazette, 1959 Gazette, 2004 Gazette, and 2018 Gazette. The present Chairman of Ekiti Traditional Council is listed and classified among the PeluPelu Obas in the Gazette. “
While advising Governor Fayemi not to contemplate responding to Alaafin’s letter he labeled was in bad faith, urged Oba Adeyemi to concentrate in resolving the crisis in his state’s council.
“We say with all sense of authority and responsibility that Alaafin’s letter is borne out of ignorance. Let him remove the log in his eyes before seeking to remove the speck from others.
“Finally, the Ekiti State Council of Traditional Rulers has therefore advised our Governor Dr. Kayode Fayemi NOT to dignify Alaafin’s letter with any response because it is clearly ill-motivated and in bad faith,” Alawe said.