YCE calls for grading of Kwara traditional rulers

Yoruba Council of Elders, (Igbimo Agba Yoruba) Kwara State chapter has appealed to Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, to allow every local government in the state to have its own traditional council where all the traditional rulers therein are graded.

In a letter to the governor, dated August 20, 2020, signed by the chairman and secretary, Elder Olabisi Abogunrin and Reverend Williams Owolabi, respectively, the group, in a reminder, dated April 8, 2021, advised the governor to grade the four Baloguns, Mogaji Are of Ilorin, the Ohoro of Shao and the Oba of Jebba as done by the late former governor of the state, Muhammed Lawal, in 2002.

The people, who canvased appropriate recognition to the Yoruba traditional rulers within the Ilorin Emirate, urged the governor to set in motion a corrective measure to address what they called the predicament of Yoruba traditional rulers in Asa, Moro, Ilorin East and Ilorin South by setting up a committee to reverse the present situation.

The letter, titled, Request for Immediate Intervention and Deliverance of Yoruba Traditional Institutions in Asa, Moro, Ilorin West, Ilorin East and Ilorin South Local Government Areas from Feudal Subjugation and Unwarranted Oppression, said that, “We, the Yoruba Council of Elders, Kwara State Chapter hereby passionately plead with your Excellency for immediate intervention in the lingering subjugation of Yoruba traditional institutions in the five local governments of the Kwara Central senatorial district of Kwara state inadvertently referred to as Emirate Area of Kwara state by feudal head of the emirate Council.

“The five local government areas are Asa, Moro, Ilorin West, Ilorin East and llorin South.

“Before, now and as far back as 1907 and 1913 during colonial administration, gazetted and documented events revealed that some chiefs in the llorin Emirate were uplifted to second, third and fourth class grades. It was not until 13 years later, in 1920, that the Colonial Administration promoted the Emir of Ilorin to 1st class status during the reign of Oba Abdulkadir the first.

“The exercise of grading of Traditional rulers is a continuous one. During the creation of Kwara state: ln 1967, the exercise was conducted and many traditional rulers were upgraded to 2nd, 3rd and 4th class status.

“It was during Governor Adamu Attah’s administration that Olupo, Oloffa, Emir of Lafiagi, Etsu Patigi and others were elevated to first-class status.

As of today, all other Local Government Areas of Kwara State other than those five clandestinely held up under Ilorin Emirate have at least one first class traditional ruler.

“In fact, no traditional ruler within the Emirate has been allowed to be elevated to any grade. Is it that none of them is qualified to be elevated? It is interesting to note that Ohoro of Shao was elevated 3rd class chief alongside ldofian, Eruku, Osi, Obbo, Ekan, iloffa but the intervention of the emirate caused that of Shao to be withdrawn. Ever since then Ohoro Shao has remained ungraded. As of today, Osi is now first-class, Iloffa is first class, Eruku and Obbo are now 2nd class e.t.c.

“According to history, Shao was founded before llorin, why then should any moral being want to deprive such Yoruba traditional settlement of a graded chief.

“This is not only sad, but it is also oppressive, after all, their grading will not diminish anything from the position of anyone either in power or finance as their salaries will not be deducted from the Ilorin emirate.

“Of all the 16 Local Government Areas in Kwara State, only those five tagged Emirates do not have any council of chiefs.

In another letter to remind the governor, the people said that seven months after the first letter was delivered, the governor did not make any comment to show that their request received attention.

“It is in our humble view that issue of their nature is very, volatile and demands the prompt reaction of your Excellency.
We wish to remind your Excellency that among the contents of the oath of office you took includes inter alia that you will do justice to all manner of men without fear or favour affection or ill-will.

For the past seven months, there has not been any response from your noble office that our request in receiving attention. God has placed you in a vantage position to put things right at this moment and that is why God has put you in such a position in time like this.

“In line with this, Your Excellency, we urge you to also look into the complaint look into the compliant
oI Share people in respect of the issue of a boundary dispute.

“The problem posed by the boundary dispute between Offa and Erin-Ile should not be allowed to duplicate itself between Share in Ifelodun and Tsaragi in Edu Local Government.

“We shall be prepared if Your Excellency is disposed to inviting us for dialogue over our requests.”



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