July 17, 2018
The Olota Of Ota, HRM Oba (Prof.) Adeyemi Abdulkabir Obalanlege is set to install Awori Oba in Oke-Ata, Baale in Lafenwa, Aro, and two other Awori settlements in Abeokuta.
In a chat with one of the prominent Chiefs in Ota, VOA News reliably gathered that Olota of Ota, Oba (Prof.) Adeyemi Obalanlege will install Oba and Baales in five Awori settlements in the present day Abeokuta, Ogun State. Oba (Prof.) Obalanlege who will confer Chieftaincy titles on Chief Olusegun Tokis as Otunba of Ota and Hon. Ola Bello as Oluomo of Ota by September, this year has already commenced plans for the crowning of Oloke Ata of Oke-Ata, Baale of Aro, Baale of Eliafekiwa in Awori dialect (Lafenwa) and two other notable Awori towns that were not disclosed to our correspondent.
“Alaiyeluwa, Oba (Prof.) Adeyemi Abdulkabir Obalanlege, the Olota of Ota will install Obas on Awori settlements in Abeokuta as soon as he concludes the conferment of Chieftaincy titles on some prominent Ota sons by September this year. Plans are already underway, we are at top gear of consultations. Infact, traditional rites would soon commence. Oke Ata, Lafenwa, Aro were all Awori settlements before the Egbas forcefully took them from us. Some of them said they took over the lands from us by conquest which Alake stated in one of their documents which they are using as claim on our lands. According to the history made available to us by our fathers, Aworis settled in those places long before the Egbas came in 1842. Also, we were made to understand that no war has ever conquered the Aworis. So, the move by Olota is necessary as Aworis have positioned themselves and are now ready to reclaim the lands which were forcefully taken from them a long time ago”.
“If you visit those places that Kabiyesi is to install Awori Obas, you will of course agree with me that they are 100% Awori settlements. Their culture, tradition, orientation and their alignment has not shifted despite being forcefully and geographically categorized under Egbas. Aworis owns those places, even the present day Ifo, Papa and the rest that Owu Obas have been crowned, they all belong to Aworis. Those moves are part of Olowu’s expansionist’s tendencies. We are not seeking extension like the Owus and Akes, we just want to have what rightfully belonged to us”.
When our correspondent asked our source of impending crisis which may arise aftermath of Olota’s action, he said that there would not be crisis. “There won’t be crisis at all. After all, there are two Obas in Ifo. The Olu of Ifo was made by Alake of Egbaland, Olowu of Owu made another Oba to rule in the same Ifo, despite the fact that Ifo is a core Awori settlement, they are both ruling in their domains without rancor. Though, one of them must be recognized by the government as an authentic Oba while the other remain illegal. So, Olota’s decision to install an Awori Oba on Awori settlements in Abeokuta is a welcome idea that will even go down well with our people who have been lost to geographical separations”.
Our investigation revealed that the panel of inquiry set up to investigate the Chieftaincy tussle in Ifo/Ota Local Government in 1986 where Egbas claimed that four (4) families were entitled to become Baales in Ifo. Meanwhile, the pannel recommended that Aworis of Tigbo extraction should be included among the families that were entitled to become Baale in Ifo because they are the original owners of Ifo.
However, up till now, the powers that be in Abeokuta have refused to act on the recommendation by the panel of inquiry