The newly elected chairman of Osun State Council of Obas, the Owa Obokun of Ijesaland, Oba Adekunle Aromolaran, has said that traditional rulers in the state may boycott Monday’s coronation and presentation of staff of office ceremony of the new Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, unless they receive formal invitation letter from the central planning committee of the event.
Briefing newsmen after its meeting in Osogbo, where he was adopted as the substantive chairman of the council, Oba Aromolaran stated that members of the council would only shift their position if they are accorded their due recognition.
He said: “If we are invited with invitation cards or letters, we will go there after consulting with the governor. As at the time we concluded the meeting of Osun Council of Obas today (Thursday), we have not received any invitation from Ile-Ife about Monday’s coronation. We don’t go to where we have not been invited.”
According to him, “Today, we held a meeting of Council of Obas in Osun. During our discussion, we deliberated on the chairmanship of the council. Ataoja of Osogbo, Oba Jimoh Olanipekun moved the motion that since I have been acting as the chairman, I should continue in that capacity as the substantive chairman and other monarchs supported the motion.
“I have been acting as chairman of the council even when late Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade, was alive. I usually presided over the meetings in his palace because of his old age.”
While promising not to disappoint all the traditional rulers who stood by him, the monarch said: “Now that Osun Obas have unanimously adopted me as their substantive chairman, I would work for the growth of Osun State and also collaborate with Governor Rauf Aregbesola in moving the state forward socially and economically.”
However, when asked what would be the status of the new Ooni of Ife now that he (Aromolaran) had been adopted as the substantive chairman of the Osun Council of Obas, he said: “Only the Obas can answer that question because they made me their chairman.”
But, reacting to the claims that Osun traditional rulers have not been invited to the Ooni’s coronation, the chairman, media and publicity of Ooni coronation planning committee, Hon Biyi Odunlade, said the central planning committee had already sent out invitations to all the traditional rulers in Osun State.
He said: “I can tell you authoritatively that we have sent out invitation letters individually to all the monarchs in Osun State. We believe that they are one in unity, but we have to treat them individually with respect and that is why we sent the invitation card individually.”