VOA Entertainment & Lifestyle takes you through the background, lifestyle, visions and plans of Chief Segun Johnson as the new Otunba of Ota.
We hope you will enjoy this…..
For the records, kindly tell us a brief about yourself, your hobbies, experience, educational background.
My name is Segun Johnson, popularly known as Tokis. I was born in Ota, my mother is from Ishilo compound in Ota while my father is from Ilesha. I am a transporter. I had little education in African Primary School, Ota and Iganmode Grammar School, Ota before i ventured into transportation business as a means of making ends meet and to the glory of God, i have been able to rise up through the ranks and eventually becoming successful in the transportation business.
Where exactly is Ishilo Compound and which of the families do you belong to in Ishilo?
Ishilo is a popular compound in Osi quarter. Though, the families that makes up Ishilo compound are one family and their progenitor is Eshilo, but i am of Olanire and Oyetoro extraction.
Some people are of the believe that those who becomes Otunba should be well traveled, connected and exposed, can you tell us some of your travel experiences?
Smiles… Well, i have been to several countries of the world and in all honesty, i have lost count. Among the ones i remember are; Germany, Switzerland, America, Italy and lots of countries in the African continent
And through my job, i have been able to meet with the union President of Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN), Alhaji Musa Isiwele. I have met present and serving Ministers of Transportation before, i have at some points had something or the other to do with prominent people within and outside the State, especially in the transport industry.
Can you tell us about other prominent figures you have met? We are asking this to let people know that you are also prominent.
Well, I know and i am closed with a lot of prominent people such as the Executive Governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun. This is as a result of the fact that my line of work is first in Nigeria and it enables us to know a lot of people because everyone patronizes us.
What is your position in your union?
I am the Public Relations Officer of Ogun State R.T.E.A.N and also an ex-officio in Abuja. In Ado-Odo/Ota, I am the Chairman and also in Awori zone, I am the Chairman which covers Idiroko, Agbado, Atan, Ijoko, Owode, Sango, Igbesa, Ado and Ota.
What are your contributions to the development of Ota. Has there been anytime you have offered a hand of fellowship to any Ota indigene or resident?
For the development of Ota, I can boldly say that in my line of work, most of my employees are indigenes of Ota because I care so much for Ota as it is my place of origin. Also, presently, we are working on having a Police Station and the King, the Olota of Ota has made me the Chairman of the building committee.
Can we know a bit about the Corporate Social Responsibilities you have done?
They are countless, because I help people everyday
That means you can be referred to as a philanthropist
Well, if you say so.
How do you feel when you were appointed as the King’s right-hand man?
I am very happy about it because despite the challenges I was faced with, i overcame it all and I pray that what will cause me shame from the king, God will not let it happen.
We would have asked how Olota came about the choice of Chief Segun Tokis for this position but with all we have just learnt, it won’t be necessary. So what is your vision and mission for Olota of Ota as his right-hand man for Ota as a whole?
My vision is that there would not be war in Ota because if there is no war, the land will be in peace. God will not let us witness war because the new Olota of Ota is working on making sure that there is peace and unity amongst everybody. Anywhere there is war, there can’t be peace. I also envisioned to see Ota among league of Yoruba cities that are reputable in the nearest future. We have a very focused and sincere Olota on the throne now and by consequence, it is achievable.
What will be your contribution towards ensuring that peace and tranquility reigns among the Chiefs and also in the Community at large. In a nut shell, how do you intend to pacify those that are aggrieved over your choice as the Otunba of great Ota?
As I have said earlier, we do not want enmity or such like to occur in any of the Quarters in Ota which is why we go with Kabiyesi everywhere he goes to reconcile differences. We don’t want disunity or disagreement in Ota and Awori at all.
I do not think anyone is aggrieved on my choice as the Otunba of Ota. There are issues of interest everywhere. Even when our Oba was elected, some people were aggrieved, but with time, they saw qualities in the Oba that can make the town move to a new level, since that is the position of everybody, ‘new Ota’. Asides, i have been making wider consultations, i have also talked with some elder statesmen and they have assured me that in the collective interest of Ota, they are willing to support and guide me.
The question I am about to ask is a bit technical but at the same time important. Let us imagine that the King takes a decision which is not in the overall interest of the people, are you capable or do you have what it takes to make him rescind his decision?
Of course! That is what we have been doing. If a matter is going out of hand, we can call him and implore him to look at the matter critically and Olota is a person that listens to people.
In conclusion, what advice do you have for the Olota, for the kings in various quarters and for Ota indigenes as a whole?
My advice to Kabiyesi is that Ota is a land that requires patience and a lot of patience. A common practice in Ota is that people backbites which is is as a result of our backwardness before the Olota came on board. We should unite ourselves by ourselves.
For your ceremony that will take place on September 1st, 2018, to whom exactly is the invitation extended? Is it to the prominent people alone or to everybody?
Everybody gave me the post, not just the prominent people; the invitation is extend to all and sundry
About the ceremony again, can you please tell us more about the venue address, and what form of entertainment is to be expected?
I can’t say anything about that because it seems a committee has been set for that and i have been told to leave everything to them.
Thank you so much for speaking with us. We wish you a successful spell as the Otunba of Ota
It has always been my pleasure.