The Governor of Oyo State, ‘Seyi Makinde, on Friday, installed and presented the staff of office to the 42nd Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Dr Mohood Olalekan Balogun Alliwo, Alli Okunmade II, declaring that the event was a victory for Ibadanland and a restoration of the dignity of its exemplary Traditional Chieftaincy System.
The coronation ceremony, which was held at the historical Mapo Hall, Ibadan, was witnessed by the creme-de-la-creme of the Nigerian society including Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, foremost royal fathers, governors, former governors and members of the National and State Assemblies.
Governor Makinde congratulated the new Olubadan, who he described as a man of many parts, expressing the confidence Ibadan will grow in leaps and bounds under his reign.
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr Mraiwo Adisa, equally quoted the governor as charging the Olubadan-in-Council to, as custodians of the cultures and ethos of Ibadan land, protect the sanctity of its chieftaincy system and not allow politicians interfere with it.
According to the governor, the Ibadan traditional system is a time-tested and long-lasting chieftaincy system that has remained a worthy example in chieftaincy succession across the globe.
He also urged the new Olubadan to remain steadfast as the gatekeeper of Ibadan traditional system, adding that if at any point an amendment becomes necessary to the traditional system, such should be self-proposed by the Olubadan-in-Council and not be left to the whims of politicians.
He said: “I want to restate that even though we politicians will come and go, sometimes, to satisfy our political whims, we may make decisions that do not protect our traditional systems.
“This is why the custodians of our culture must always take a stand against us tinkering with age-old traditional systems.
“Our elders, the members of the various councils, the chiefs, our traditional fathers, they are the gatekeepers and they must remain steadfast in their roles.
“Remember, no politician can destroy any system without the cooperation of some members of these systems.
“Therefore, I want to use this opportunity to ask that Kabiyesi and the Olubadan-in-Council work to ensure that the laws having to do with the ascension to the throne of Olubadan remain sacrosanct.
“The Olubadan-in-Council should remain self-regulated without any external interference from the political class.”
Governor Makinde, who rejoiced with the new Olubadan as well as sons and daughters of Ibadanland, added: “We rejoice with the sons and daughters of Ibadanland, both at home and in the diaspora. The massive crowd gathered here today, speaks to the importance of this occasion.
“This is an age-old tradition that we must continue to uphold. Yes, since the first coronation ceremony was held in the 1850s, we have maintained in the best way possible, given various circumstances, one of the best succession lines in Yoruba history.
“So, we rejoice that today, we crown a new Olubadan. Our gathering here today is a victory for the sons and daughters of Ibadanland, and restoration of our traditional systems.
“I have always taken a stand for the integrity of our traditional systems, and so I am especially delighted that today, Friday, March 11, 2022, the sanctity of this century-old dynasty has been restored.” The governor maintained that the new monarch has distinguished himself as an excellent professional and has contributed and will continue to contribute to the development of Ibadanland and Oyo State at large, having served both in private and public service.
He added that he was assured that Oba Balogun is in a good position to defend the sanctity and tradition of Ibadan people and move Ibadanland forward.
The governor wished His Imperial Majesty, a long, peaceful and successful reign, praying that the land of Ibadan will experience unequalled development, and tranquillity during Kabiyesi’s reign.
Similarly, Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, who spoke on behalf of President Muhammadu Buhari, congratulated the new monarch and the people of Ibadanland.
In her welcome address, the Secretary to the Oyo State Government, Mrs Olubamiwo Adeosun, said that the people of Ibadan are happy at the start of the new era signified by the installation of the 42nd Olubadan.
Some of the highlights of the event include traditional homage-paying to the new Olubadan, led by the Otun Olubadan, High Chief Rashidi Ladoja, followed by other members of the Olubadan-in-Council, Council of Iyalodes, Mogajis and religious leaders, among others.
The event had in attendance, among others, Vice-President Osinbajo; former Vice-President Abubakar; governors of Ekiti, Ogun and Kano, Dr Kayode Fayemi, Prince Dapo Abiodun, Dr Abdullahi Ganduje; representatives of the governors of Osun, Ondo and Edo states; former Governors Olagunsoye Oyinlola and Olusegun Mimiko.
Among the traditional rulers in attendance were: Ooni of Ife, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Enitan Ogunwusi; Alaafin of Oyo, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi III; Sultan of Sokoto, His Eminence, Alhaji Abubakar Sa’ad; Emir of Kano, His Eminence, Alhaji Ado Bayero; Etsu Nupe, Dr Yahaya Abubakar.
National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Senator Iyorchia Ayu; a representative of the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu as well as members of the National Assembly were also in attendance.