From Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan
Director, Media and Public Affairs to Olubadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji, Adeola Oloko, has described the recommended 32 crowns for Ibadanland as nothing but a joke carried too far.
Oloko stated this in a statement yesterday, when he reacted to an interview by the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Bimbo Kolade, on ‘Oro Sunnukun’ on Splash FM, a private radio station in Ibadan.
Kolade reportedly said Oba Adetunji had at one time opposed the chieftaincy review, before he later changed his mind to support it.
But, Oloko said the opposition of Adetunji to the chieftaincy review still stands, adding: “For the avoidance of doubt, there was never a time Olubadan supported the review embarked upon by the Oyo State Government.
“This was why the first class monarch did not submit any memorandum or made any representation to the panel. When last week, the panel submitted its report to the governor, the public would remember that Olubadan was not in the picture, because he was not invited.
“Both the young and old in Ibadan know that the Ibadan chieftaincy system is not a creation of the government. It is a creation of Ibadan people. No king, no governor, no elite, no high chief has the right to tamper with the system without recourse to our people.
“How many town hall meetings has the state government convened before arriving at the conclusion that Ibadan deserves 32 crowns? To show ignorance of our tradition, the panel lumped our highly respected high chiefs with baales who are always nominated by the family mogajis.
‘If the traditional institution wants a review, it is not the duty of government to spearhead the review. It is the duty of the Olubadan sitting in council to look at what they want to review and register same to the state government for approval.
“In Ile-Ife, where the commissioner mentioned on the interview, this is the tradition. The Osun State Government did not spearhead the review. In Lagos and Ogun states, the case is similar.
“Besides, there are two cases in court in respect of this same issue, which the Oyo State Government is not unaware of. You do not have to be a member of the Oyo State Council of Obas and Chiefs to know that creation of royalties and crowns is a matter for discussion and deliberation.
“So, the question is how long ago has the council met? Therefore, it is an exercise in futility to embark on creation of new crowns and royalties without first of all resolving these issues.
“Besides, how many emirs are in Kano, if you are talking of size and population? How many Sultans are in Sokoto? And, how many queens are in England? Kabiyesi will not be able to attend the meeting called by the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters to discuss the issue slated for Wednesday (today) because of a subsisting court order as Olubadan is a law-abiding citizen of Nigeria.”