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Ibadan Obas threaten to dethrone Olubadan for commercializing chieftancy title



MEMBERS of Olubadan-in-Council, yesterday, declared that they reserve the right to dethrone the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji, if they are not comfortable with his administrative style.

The members of the traditional council, including the next-in-hierarchy to the monarch, Oba Lekan Balogun, were reacting to an earlier story where the monarch said Ibadan people wanted the high chiefs banished.

In a statement issued after a meeting they held at Mapo Hall at the weekend, the traditional rulers said those people Olubadan said were calling for their banishment from Ibadanland were either shortsighted or are outright enemies of progress. The kingmakers alleged that the Olubadan had commercialized chieftaincy titles in the city.

The statement reads: ‘’If they are not shallow in thought or shortsighted, they would appreciate our role as the kingmakers who ensured your Imperial Majesty’s installation in the first place and reserve the right to call for Your Imperial Majesty’s abdication of the throne if we are not comfortable (as we are currently) with the administrative style of the Palace.

‘’It sounds odd, unthinkable and unimaginable that people now pay as much as N30 million to be installed or appointed as a traditional chief in Ibadanland.

“This is against one’s antecedents and family contributions to the development of Ibadanland, which are the traditional yardsticks to measure qualification for appointment or installation.”

In a four-page letter, members of the Olubadan-in-Council, who were promoted to crown-wearing Obas by the immediate past administration of Senator Abiola Ajimobi, expressed regret at the turn of events. They argued that it was not their promotion to crown-wearing kings that caused the brouhaha but the ‘’failure to take caution when your attention was being drawn to some of the Palace missteps.”

The council members said: ‘’The issues were the relegation of the members of the Olubadan-in-Council to mere onlookers and bystanders at the Olubadan-in-Council meetings, where the Oloris (as they were then) and some members of Your Imperial Majesty’s family were the decision-makers.

‘’We are not aware of any of the Olubadans in the history of Ibadanland whose wives and family members were made members of Olubadan-in-Council. Our attempt to check this anomaly through protest was rebuffed and our personalities verbally attacked and recriminated by the Oloris in the presence of Your Imperial Majesty without a word of caution.

‘’The other issue which drew our ire and which was a reflection of the denial of our patriotic contributions at the Olubadan-in-Council meetings was the criminal commercialization of Ibadan Traditional Titles the moment Your Imperial Majesty ascended the throne of Olubadan, which was a sharp departure from what we all agreed to and practiced during the reign of Your Imperial Majesty’s predecessor.

‘’The implication of this ‘cash and carry’ approach is the appointment or installation of some people with questionable moral background at the expense of decent and genuine people with proven track records and whose genuine and verifiable source of income could not meet the demand of the palace.

‘’Equally, the highest bidder approach has led to the appointment or installation of two or three Mogajis for the same family or compound, while two or more Baales are appointed for some towns and settlements, following which some aggrieved persons are already in court to challenge Your Imperial Majesty. If we may ask, what kind of future is our revered monarch building for Ibadanland.”

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