As the dust settled over the emergence of new obas in Ibadan, the Olubadan of Ibadan land, Oba Saliu Adetunji, on Monday urged Governor Abiola Ajimobi not to paint him bad before the public, stressing that his decision to oppose the review of the Olubadan chieftaincy system was not political in any way.
In a statement by the Director of Media and Public Affairs to the palace, Mr Adeola Oloko, on Monday, the monarch said: “As a monarch, I’m a father of all, irrespective of sex, ethnic and ideological persuasions.
“Since Friday, March 4, 2016, when I ascended the exalted throne of Olubadan I have opened the gate of our palace wide to all manner of people. If you belong to APC, PDP, Labour, Accord and/or more, you are most welcome. So, politics has nothing to do with my resistance or opposition to the chieftaincy review spearheaded by the Oyo State Government.”
Oba Adetunji also described as unfortunate the comment by the governor that recent utterances from the palace are tending towards the political, adding if he (the governor) has any demonstrable evidence of such, he should kindly provide it.
According to him, there is no press statement issued from the Olubadan media office which did not enjoy his blessing before it was made public.
He said: “While I am aware that people react to age differently, I am not old enough to be misinterpreted by anybody, even at 89. Governor Ajimobi stated that he invited us to the Governor’s Office over this matter and visited me in the palace later.
“While this is true, I wish to respectfully state that the Board Panel was inaugurated on May 19, 2017, His Excellency, Governor Ajimobi invited me to the Governor’s Office on Wednesday, June 14, 2017, after the panel had sat for 4 weeks. At that meeting, His Excellency, the Oyo State Governor, the High Chiefs and State House correspondents would recall my opposition to the chieftaincy review.
“My question is: ‘did anybody put words in my mouth in that recorded tape?’ When he invited me to his office and visited me in the palace on Sunday, June 18, 2017, the Board Panel was almost through with its job, when we met at the inner chamber, what the State Governor came to tell me was that he knew I should have been consulted first. So, it is not true that I was consulted, as claimed by him.
“If I had been consulted, this error would have been avoided. The desecration of the crown would have been averted.”
The Olubadan of Ibadan land, who congratulated all Ibadan people on keeping the peace, assured that these times would pass.
Oba Adetunji commended all his brother-monarchs for their solidarity and cooperation, saying his opposition to the mass coronation exercise was to prevent the breakdown of law and order, complication and dire consequences in Ibadan Chieftaincy System.