IBADAN—THE new kings, yesterday, vowed that they would only return to the Olubadan’s palace if they are accorded due recognition as obas and not as high chiefs.
After rising from a meeting held at the Alalubosa residence of Oba Owolabi Olakulehin in Ibadan, the kings who were upgraded by the former Governor of Oyo State, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, said their new status as kings had already been gazetted which means they are legally recognized as kings and not high chiefs. Unless, the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji and his aides recognize and address them as kings, they vowed never to return to the palace. Faulting earlier reports that they went to the Popoyemoja Palace of Olubadan without crowns, Oba Olakulehin and Oba Tajudeen Ajibola who spoke on behalf of others said, those saying that were living in fool’s paradise and were being mischievous. In a statement by Otun Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Lekan Balogun, and the Balogun of Ibadanland, Oba Owolabi Olakulehin, the kings said: “The reform carried out by the immediate past governor of the state, Senator Abiola Ajimobi was in the best interest of Ibadan and in response to the age long agitation for befitting status for the Ibadan high chiefs within the larger Oyo State Council of Obas and chiefs. “What they don’t know is that even without wearing crowns to the Olubadan palace, we are obas. For anybody to say remove your crowns before you come to us, it is absurd. We won’t return to Olubadan palace as high chiefs but as obas. “We are not fighting Olubadan at all he is the one fighting us. What we are saying is that he should accord us the respect and recognition that we deserve. Two, we have told him many times that his wife (Olori) has no right to sit with us at Olubadan-in-council meeting. She is not a member. We learnt that she still sat at a meeting recently and as long as that impunity continues, there won’t be peace. We love and cherish peace, but things must be done properly.”