The Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji, has through his Director, Media and Public Affairs , Mr Adeola Oloko described the purported outcome of of the Judicial Commission of Inquiry for the review of the existing 1957 Declaration of Olubadan of Ibadanland and other related chieftaincies in Ibadanland, headed by Justice Akintunde Boade (retd.) set up by the Oyo State government, “as a joke carried too far.”
Oloko stated this on Tuesday, in a statement issued and signed by his Director, Media and Public Affairs, Adeola Oloko and made available to journalists in Ibadan. Last week, the Commission of Inquiry submitted its report to the state governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, at the Governor’s Office, Ibadan. This highlight of the recommendations was recommendation of a 32-beaded-crown-wearing Obas in Ibadan while the Olubadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji, will maintain his status as the paramount ruler of the ancient city.
Oloko on behalf of the Olubadan said “the erroneous impression in that interview was that Kabiyesi had, at one time, opposed the chieftaincy review before he later changed his mind to support it. For the avoidance of doubt, there was never a time the Olubadan supported the review embarked upon by the Oyo State government. This was why the first-class monarch did not submit any memorandum or make any representation to the panel. When last week, the panel submitted its report to the state governor, the public would remember that Olubadan was not in the picture at all, 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.
“Secondly, 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 sit and 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 was similar. Besides, there are two cases in court in respect of this same issue, which the Oyo State government is not unaware of.
“Thirdly, 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 city 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, August 23 because of a subsisting court order as Olubadan is a law-abiding citizen of Nigeria.”