It was recently reported that the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo, had rated himself higher than the Awujale of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Adetona.
While everyone expected Oba Adetona to respond, he didn’t say a word immediately.
However, last week, at the launch of an endowment fund for the Oba Sikiru Adetona Professorial Chair in Governance, Department of Political Science, Olabisi Onabanjo University, held at Oriental Hotel, in Victoria Island Lagos, the Awujale finally spoke.
He said when he learnt that the Alake rated himself higher than him, he reached out to him to find out if those statements were actually made by him. According to Oba Adetona, the Alake denied making the statement.
He said, “Regrettably, however, when the said statement was continuously credited to Alake on the pages of newspapers, I expected him to deny it or issue a rebuttal, but he did not do so. Therefore, I consider it necessary to debunk the aforementioned falsehood and misrepresentation of facts from the Ake Palace, and put the records straight.
“First, I would like to make it abundantly clear that the 1903 Gazette referred to by Alake was just a newspaper publication that he, in his self-serving role, is now presenting as an official government gazette. The first question to Alake is: who categorised the Yoruba Obas and when? I challenge him to produce the document of the said categorisation.
“In short, the Alake, from history and all available records, is a very junior traditional ruler in Yorubaland. His peers in Ijebuland are the Dagburewe of Idowa, Ajalorun of Ijebu-Ife, Akija of Ikija–Ijebu, Olowu of Owu-Ijebu, Oloko of Ijebu-Imushin, Orimolusi of Ijebu-Igbo and Ebumawe of Ago-Iwoye.”
He advised Alake to contact Chief Olusegun Obasanjo for proper education, so as to save himself and his people from further embarrassment. He stated, “I strongly admonish Alake to refrain from making such unsavoury, unguarded and unfounded statements, which if not checked, may seriously jeopardise the unity of Yoruba obas and their people.”
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