As the Oluwo of Iwoland, Oba Abdul-Rasheed Adewale Akanbi, Telu I, called for urgent reform of Yoruba traditional system, he charged the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II and the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, not to be silent on the lingering disunity among Yoruba traditional institution and insecurity ravaging Yoruba nation.
According to him, “silence at this critical point of our life is not golden,” saying the people are looking up to them for quality and visionary leadership.
Oluwo, who said it was disappointing that nothing is being done to address animosity characterizing the Yoruba traditional institution, lamented that keeping mute while the revered institution is dragged in the mud could portend danger for the race.
In a statement by his press secretary, Alli Ibraheem, the Oluwo lamented that the “distasteful development is gradually decimating the authorities and grips of monarchs on Yoruba traditional value system.”
The first class paramount ruler, therefore, charged the Ooni and the Alaafin to use their spiritual and political instrumentality to facilitate unity among Yoruba monarchs and also halt regular animosity of superiority claims, which he said had continued to reduce the quality and power of the revered institution.
The Oluwo said: “Prompt intervention of the duo of Ooni and Alaafin could have arrested the recent altercation among the Yoruba traditional rulers resulting from crowning of diaspora Obas by the Olugbo of Ugboland, Oba Obateru Akinruntan. But it is disappointing that none could boldly speak to protect traditional institution and be balanced in his judgement. And this is why I voiced out to that effect. I am glad Baba Alaafin has never done crowned anybody in disapora but I want to say that the Olugbo was not the first to commit this act which should not have been in the first place because crowns are not for sale or gift. appeal to other Obas to politely withdraw the title in the interest of the institution. Otherwise, monarchs will turn to cheap compliments just like birthday gifts. Monarchs are recognized by Chiefs Laws, anything outside that is null and void. The sanctity of the institution should be honourably protected through a polite appeal for retrieval by Central Council of Yoruba Obas and not uncultured bashing by a chief.
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“If you are not defending the Obas anymore, is your certificate as a chief to insult your symbol of authority (the crown)? It is a security threat to the traditional system. No one does that in the old days and go away with it. It amazing this is happening in our own time and the Ooni of Ife and Alaafin of Oyo are watching. Chiefs are not certified to mediate by taking side. It is an affront on the tradition for a chief to insult a king.
“I am afraid the Ooni and the Alaafin are losing their grips on Yoruba traditional institution. Many wrongs exist and are surviving under their watch, most especially schism among traditional rulers and insecurity ravaging Yoruba nation. Unfortunately, they are mute, a sign of contentment. I rise to challenge them and put them on their toes. I want them to be up to this task. May God help them. The failure of the institution lubricated the intrusion of chief to insult the crown. I think it is a security challenge to the office of the Oduduwa we all represent.
“Both the Ooni and the Alaafin should halt regular animosity and secure the race through quality representation and should develop a defending mechanism of traditional system. The era of warlords and chiefs that use to depose or betray the Alaafin by killing him is gone. We are in modern times now and we all have powerful chiefs in our domain and they are all under the kings’ watch because ila ki ga ju onire re lo.
“We need a Central Council of Yoruba Monarchs comprises mainly of kings to resolve issues and prevent external intervention of inferior elements. Adopting such will rejuvenate the institution and secure the grip of the council. The Oluwo, therefore, called for the disbandment of status quo and charged for an urgent review of Yoruba traditional system through the formation of Central Council of Yoruba Obas.”