Onibeju Stool: No Oba - Elect Yet, Says Prince Jimoh Oniwonlu - THE DAILY CRUCIBLE



Sunday, September 18, 2022

Onibeju Stool: No Oba - Elect Yet, Says Prince Jimoh Oniwonlu

••• As Indigenes, Residents Of Ibeju Lekki Seek Gov Sanwo-Olu's Intervention

•Sanwo -Olu

The Daily Crucible | Monday, September 19, 2022

There appears to be no let up in the intrigues and twist rocking the process of selecting next Onibeju of Ibeju kingdom in Ibeju Lekki Local Government Area of Lagos State as a member of Oniwonlu Royal Family, Prince Jimoh Adesanya Oniwonlu, has declared that nobody has yet been nominated and presented as an Oba - elect to fill the vacant throne.

The last monarch, His Royal Majesty, Oba Olusegun Rafiu Salami, joined his ancestors on June 3, 2020 after about 12 years of meritorious reign in Ibeju Lekki, a fast emerging major industrial hub in Lagos State.

The process of selecting Oba Salami's successor has been subject of intrigues and high level politicking according to some sources.

There are three ruling houses in the town, namely Abejoye, Oniwonlu and Aladeseso.  Each of these ruling families has branches and they take turn to ascend the throne of Onibeju of Ibeju Lrkki kingdom.

But speaking on the development, Prince Jimoh Oniwonlu said that the Onibeju stool is still a subject of a pending matter in court and awaiting judgement.

He advised the public to discountenance a publication presenting Prince Ademuyiwa Akande Oniwonlu as the Oba-elect for the vacant stool of Ibeju Lekki kingdom.

The Prince from the Royal family whose turn it is to produce the next Oba for the town, made this known in a statement at the weekend while reacting to a publication dated September 5, 2022 in a national newspaper and which presented Prince Ademuyiwa Akande Oniwonlu as an Oba -elect.

Prince Jimoh Oniwonlu alleged that the said Oba-elect emerged from a Kangaroo election conducted by a compromised, biased and divided 5-man selection committee.

He claimed the Committee went behind to present Prince Ademuyiwa Akande Oniwonlu as Oba - elect whereas his name was not even among the names sent to Lagos State Governor by the town's kingmakers.

He recalled that when Oba Salami joined his ancestors, it becomes the turn of the family of Oniwonlu to produce an eligible Prince for Onibeju stool, a development that led the family to set up a 5-man committee for the selection of the next Omo-Oye.

According to him, during the process of selection, the following candidates - Prince Adewale Adeyemi Abdul-Rauf,
Prince Ademuyiwa Akande and Prince Idris Ajumobi were shortlisted and afterwards, sent to the kingmakers by the Oniwonlu Royal Family. 

He noted that along the line, some names were added as candidates by the kingmakers following petitions from affected aspirants that they were excluded from the process but after screening and divination from oracle ('Ifa' ) by the 'Kngmakers' on all the candidates, Prince Adewale Adeyemi Abdul - Rauf Oniwonlu and Prince Waliu Olasunkanmi scaled through.

He explained that the kingmakers decided to vote to determine who between Prince Adewale Adeyemi Abdul - Rauf Oniwonlu and Prince Waliu Olasunkanmi becomes the next Onibeju, stressing that during the process of voting, Prince Waliu Olasunkanmi scored three (3) votes while Prince Adewale Adeyemi Abdul-Rauf Oniwonlu polled one (1) vote.

He noted that it became an issue when the kingmakers sent their report to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State and recommended that the two candidates, Prince Waliu Olasunkanmi and Prince Adewale Adeyemi Abdu - Rauf have been found suitable for the throne of Onibeju but when the Oniwonlu Royal family sighted the report, an allegation was made known by the family that Prince Waliu Olasunkanmi is allegedly not a bonafide family member even as his name was also not part of the three names initially submitted to the 'kingmakers' for consideration. 

According to him, this led to a case of litigation on the matter in court while the Lagos state government had to also suspend the process pending the outcome of the case. 

The Daily Crucible reports that earlier, the Secretary of Olumoye in Oniwolu Royal Family, Prince Ibrahim Olawale, asked  Lagos State Governor,  Babajide Sanwo-olu, to ignore some reports in circulation that the Oyemade unit of Oniwolu Royal Family of Ibeju Lekki had presented an oba-elect for a confirmation.

In a letter to the governor, Olawale claimed it is the turn of Olumoye in Oniwolu Royal Family to present candidate for the vacant stool of Onibeju of Ibeju Lekki.

He urged the Ministry of Local Government and Community Affairs to investigate the matter urgently.

The Prince wondered why a faction of the royal family who had presented kings for several times would claim to have submitted an Oba-elect for the vacant stool without considering members of other Royal families.

He said the case is pending at the Lagos High Court to address the injustice because it is the turn of Olumoye in Oniwolu Royal Family to present next Onibeju of Ibeji Lekki.

Indigenes, Residents Seek Gov Sanwo-Olu's Intervention

Meanwhile,  Ibeju people comprising over a dozen communities are appealing to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to approve the recommendation made to him in respect of nomination of the next Onibeju of the town.

The people are concerned that delay in appointing the next monarch is giving room to many to lay claiming to being  tthe Oba-elect.

According to them, the development could lead to confusion and breach peace in the area.

They made this known on Sunday while addressing the press through the head of the kingmakers, Chief Moshood Adewale Musefiu.

Musefiu said, “Each of the ruling house has branches and for the leadership, we have Olori Ebi Eka and Olori Ebi Apapo. When it is the turn of a ruling house to produce the next monarch, branches in a ruling house will bring out their list of aspirants and if all the branches agree to one candidate, it is okay. In this instance, it it the turn of Oniwonlu Ruling House to produce the next Onibeju.

“They came forward with 19 names and we, the kingmakers, met and did all that is necessary and forwarded a name to the local government chairman for onward transmission to the governor for approval. When the last Onibeju joined his ancestors about two years ago, as the Head of the Kingmakers, I promised the people that within six months, we will conclude our assignment.

“We did that and submitted our report to the government. We don’t know what is causing the delay now. The delay has led to some people going about and claiming to be the Oba-elect. It is not even one person that is claiming that, how many people will be the Onibeju at the same time?

“According to the 1958 chieftaincy declaration, the five kingmakers in Ibeju are the Ogbeni-Odi, Idogun, Bobagunwa, Aro and Shasore. We have done the necessary things, both the 1958 declaration and the Lagos State Law of Obas and Chiefs did not at any time mention or recognise any other group of committee or person for the declaration of Oba-elect." 

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