WOLE BALOGUN, Ado Ekiti
An embattled king in Ekiti State and Obasaoye of Isaoye Ekiti in Moba Local Government, Oba Gabriel Olajide, has appealed to his subjects to allow peace to reign and drop plans to depose him.
Oba Olajide, who was a Sergeant in the Nigeria Police Force said, he became the king in 2017 with a strong vision to rewrite the history of the community and foster development by changing the narrative of the town.
He assured the subjects that although he would not participate in ritual activities being a Christian, but had no intention to eradicate traditional practices in the kingdom.
“Going by the provision of Section 38 of the 1999 Constitution, I have no power to eradicate any religion, because we have the freedom to practise the religion of our choice.”
Oba Ajibade, who is a member of the Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministry, was last year chased out of the town, following suspicion that he was not interested in the traditional rites of his people.
The town, in a petition signed by 14 chiefs and dated July19, 2019 and addressed to the council of traditional rulers, clearly stated their resolve to remove the king for allegedly abdicating the throne of his forebears.
In the petition, the chiefs raised 13 offences against Oba Ajibade, which included non-performance of traditional rites, harassment of subjects with police, highhandedness and abscondment, among other issues.
Debunking the allegations at a press conference in Ado Ekiti on Wednesday, Oba Ajibade revealed that he would have been killed in August last year, just because of his faith when some irate subjects brought a body to his palace and deflated his vehicle tyres.
“We had just rounded off a revival in my town and a few days later, some subjects brought the corpse of a woman to my palace. They nearly destroyed my car and I had to escape through the bush to Ayetoro. Those who came included members of my own ruling house.
“They petitioned against me to the governor. They said I had absconded. That I wanted to bring change and that was why I came with a religion I believe in; they misunderstood me and said they wanted a new king.
“Nobody had ever held councillorship position since 1999 or travelled abroad in Isaoye, but we have produced a councillor and our children are now travelling out within two years, I came to the throne.
“The state deputy governor, Chief Bisi Egbeyemi and Oore of Otun, Oba Adedapo Popoola called us last in December last year and appealed that we should go and resolve our differences, but some chiefs decided to frustrate the peace committee I constituted.
“I want to appeal to the government to plead with them to allow peace to reign in the interest of our children and generations coming.”
He appealed to his detractors to sheath their swords and join hands with him to improve the human resources and infrastructure facilities of the ancient community.
“Let me also tell those who are struggling for this Obasaoye stool with me to have the belief that only God can enthrone a king,” he said.