Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
Olota-in-Council has vowed to resist any attempt by the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo and the Olowu of Owu Kingdom, Oba Adegboyega Dosunmu, to install monarchs and village heads in some Awori towns.
The council also urged the two monarchs to shelve their plans or face stiff resistance from the Awori people.
Olota-in-Council made up of traditional chiefs in the Palace of Olota, spoke ysterday during a press conference in Abeokuta, Ogun State.
The Seriki of Ota, Olanrewaju Bashorun, claimed that intelligence at the their disposal indicated that some persons who were not Ota indigenes, but being backed by both the Alake and Olowu, have been penciled down to be installed as monarchs before the end of May.
He said the scheme to install new monarchs and baale whose ancestors have no biological, historical and circumstantial link with the Aworis in Aworiland, would only cause disaffection and lead to chaos in Ota and its environs.
Bashorun, who mentioned Sango-Ota, Atan-Ota, Ijoko-Ota, Abule Lemomu, Oke-Ore and Adekoyeni as towns where the new monarchs are to be installed, declared that any attempt to carry out installation of traditional rulers in the areas without the consent of Olota of Ota, Oba Abdul-Kabir Obalanlege, would be resisted with all legitimate means.
He said it was historical fact that the Olota is the only prescribed traditional authority over all land, towns and villages with the suffix ‘Ota’, noting that activities of Alake and Olowu were tantamount to tampering with the consenting power of Olota.
The Seriki of Ota, who pointed out that Aworiland had endured enough marginalisation in Ogun State, declared that Awori people will not allow any further subjugation.
“We have reliably gathered that against conscience, common sense and justice that some new obas, whose ancestors were not biologically, historically and circumstantially linked with the Aworis or had any affiliation with the kingship institution, would be installed before the end of May. Any such action or endeavour without the consent of Olota of Ota is an exercise in futility and would be resisted with every legitimate means available to us.
“It is an established historical fact that the Olota is the prescribed traditional authority over all land, towns and villages with the suffix Ota, including Sango-Ota, Atan-Ota and all the others. It is, therefore, amounts to denigration of that sacred institution that has endured for over 500 years without recourse to the traditional ruler.
“The first Olota was installed in 1621. It is sad that the already marginalised Awori people’s will is being tested this way. We cannot fold our hands to any further subjugation,” Bashorun said.
He, however, urged Governor Ibikunle Amosun to convene a security council meeting to nip in the bud the activities of “merchants of discord” in Awori communities and prevent illegal installations from taking place.
Efforts to reach Oba Gbadebo for his comment failed, as his telephone was switched off.
But, in a telephone conversation, the Alake official spokesperson and Baaroyin of Egbaland, Layi Labode, said it is only the Egba Traditional Council that can speak on the matter.
He said council will release official statement in reaction to the allegation by the Olota-in-Council, in due course.