The Olota of Ota, HRM Oba (Prof.) Adeyemi Abdulkabir Obalanlege has blown hot over what he described as ‘historical fallacy’ of Alake of Egba land, HRM Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo in which the later said he is the consenting authority over the lands which Olota and other Awori communities occupies in Ado-Odo/Ota Local government area of the state.
Olota made this known via a telephone chat with VOA News correspondent on Saturday on the lingering traditional tussle between Alake, the paramount ruler of Egba land and Olota of Ota. Oba Obalanlege described the statement of Alake as a ‘misnomer’ and ‘historic fallacy’. He said though, he is in far away Switzerland on official assignment; but needed to school the Alake of Egba on the historical evolution of the Aworis which predates that of the Egbas.
“I am presently on official assignment in Switzerland, but I need to remind the Alake of Ake that in Ogun State, the settlement of Awori people preceded the establishment of Abeokuta as an Egba kingdom in 1830. Otta, the foremost Awori town within the present Ogun State and which is the industrial nerve centre, for instance, has been existing since the 15th century.
The first Olota, Oba Ikoriku Toribo was coronated in 1621, while the first Alake in Abeokuta, Sagbua Okukenu was crowned on 8th August, 1854. It goes without saying that putting an Olota under an Alake is both a traditional misnomer and historic fallacy. The Ife, palace where crowns came from knows better! Never in history has Otta been captured by the Egbas.”
It will be recalled that Olota in council, led by the Seriki of Ota, High Chief Olanrewaju Taofeeq Bashorun had in the penultimate week, addressed a press conference, accusing Alake and some ‘elements’ who are hell bent on foisting some people without traceable histories within Awori land as Obas and Baales in some Awori towns.
A move which prompted the Alake in council, led by Chief Lai Labode to issue a rejoinder through a press conference, reiterating that, the Olota and residents of Ota are under the consenting authority of the Alake. Adding that, Ota and its adjoining towns is a conquest territory by Egba land in 1917, saying Ota and its environs are under the then Egba Native Administration and the Alake.
Meanwhile, Olota of Ota, HRM Oba (Prof.) Obalanlege has fired back, emphasizing that never in the history of the Aworis has any tribe or war conquered them nor were they being captured by the Egbas, but the later were rescued from Oyo invasion.
“Never in history has Otta been captured by the Egbas, rather, we rescued them from Oyo Invasion.”
The impasse between the two respected monarchs in the state has started generating a lot of controversy, one of such is that of Barrister Hibatulahhi Salako, a former NBA Chairman in Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government. He said Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo is ‘Alake of Ake’ and not of Egba land and that his traditional/customary role is only limited to the Ake extraction of Egba.
He added that the traditional role of Alake does not extend to Gbagura, Oke Ona, Owu and the rest.
“However, his role as paramount ruler is statutory one, his traditional role does not extend to other members that constitute Egba traditional council.
His statutory role therefore as a paramount ruler must conform with the enable provision of the law that created the office, his title is Alake of Ake and paramount ruler of Egba land.”