•‘What is left is the announcement by Makinde’•Royal families trade words
By Adeola Badru, Ibadan
The controversy trailing the Alaafin stool took another twist as Agunloye royal family berated Gbadegesin royal family over what was described as insistence on illegality contrary to the directive of Oyo State government on strict adherence to due process in the selection of a new monarch for Oyo Kingdom.
This happened as the Agunloye family dismissed the story making the rounds that Alaafin-elect has emerged and that Oyomesi (kingmakers) were merely waiting for Governor Seyi Makinde’s official announcement.
The Oyomesi, through the Basorun of Oyo, High Chief Yusuf Akinade, corroborated the Gbadegesin royal family position, saying Alaafin-elect emerged about one year ago.
The Agunloye family said that any attempt to engage in illegality in the choice of a new Alaafin would only make matters worse for the royal households and the people of Oyo Kingdom.
A statement by an elder from the royal family, Prince Kamorudeen Tella, indicated that the purveyors of the story making the rounds that Alaafin-elect has emerged were running with ulterior intents contrary to the overall interest of Oyo Kingdom.
The family wondered when the selection process was carried out from where the purported Alaafin-elect emerged, stressing that it was such habit of unbridled desperation that has prolonged the emergence of a new Alaafin.
Tella added that what the Gbadegesin family has done was tantamount to expecting that a new Alaafin would emerge from the social media, maintaining that until there’s commitment to due process as directed by Makinde, Oyo may continue to suffer setbacks occasioned by the absence of an Alaafin.
Tella cautioned the Gbadegesin family to desist from making matters worse for the 49 aspirants for Alaafin, stressing that, contrary to the figure quoted in the story in circulation that more than 80 aspirants were in the race for the coveted stool, it is in actual fact 49 princes.
Governor Makinde, last weekend, while congratulating the new Aseyin of Iseyin, had drawn the attention of the Iseyin crowd to the cause of delay in announcing a new Alaafin.
Makinde had during a visit to Iseyin listed lack of harmony and unity, among other reasons, as cause of the delay in announcing a new Alaafin, advising that the royal families in Oyo Kingdom should put their house in order and follow due process.
He added that any prince caught attempting to use money to influence his chances would be handed over to anti-graft agencies.
Meanwhile, Oyomesi said they were waiting for Makinde for the inauguration of the new Alaafin.The Basorun of Oyo, Akinade, who spoke on behalf of the kingmakers, disclosed this during an interview with Sunday Vanguard.
The High Chief said the name of the nominated prince had been forwarded to the governor who had yet to announce the kingmakers’ choice.
According to him, the selection process had been concluded and the only thing remaining was a formal announcement by the state government.
It would be recalled that the immediate past Alaafin, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, who ruled for almost 52 years, passed away on April 22, 2022, at 83.
The Basorun said: “We concluded the selection process for the new Alaafin on October 4, 2022, and we informed the state government of our decision immediately. As the law of the land demands, we didn’t get any petitions against our decision, but a suit was filed against us.
“We won the case, with the court throwing away the case and stating that the initial decision that Oyomesi made was right, and, since then, we have expected the governor to make an announcement, but he didn’t. We will continue to wait for him to do that.”
When asked about the suggestion that the governor intended to frustrate the Oyomesi into conducting another selection process, he said: “We will never do that. God will not allow us to see such a setback.
“The complete Oyomesi has conducted a process that has been completed, and we all signed it. We will wait till the governor is satisfied to announce the candidate we have selected.”On his part, Oyo State Commissioner for Information, Dotun Oyelade, hinted that the government had been informed of the decision of the Oyomesi, saying, however, that Makinde was taking his time.
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