By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
The crisis generated by the appointment of 32 new Obas in Ibadan by Governor Abiola Ajimobi few weeks ago reared its head on Sunday as no fewer than 63 mogajis (family heads) in Ibadan declared support for Governor Ajimobi on the chieftaincy review.
According to the about 63 Mogajis, the review of the Olubadan Chieftaincy laws by the Governor Ajimobi led administration that produced another 32 obas across Ibadanland was done in good faith as it brought elevation to the Olubadan of Ibadanland, the Olubadan in Council, Baales and the entire people of Ibadanland.
“We want to assure the people of Ibadanland that since the reform was done in a right way, we solemnly support the Governor. We are telling the government that they have our backing on the recent elevation of our father, the Olubadan of Ibadanland and our former high chiefs. We are interested in the elevation of our leaders but if the government engages in activities that belittle our leaders, we will not support the government.”they said
The Mogajis under the aegis of Ibadan Council of Recognised Mogajis in a communique disowned the activities of four Mogajis using the name Authentic Mogajis to speak on behalf of the family heads in Ibadanland, saying their activities can cause disharmony in the city.
“There is no other recognized Mogajis other than the Ibadan Council of Recognised Mogajis. We found out that some faceless people are using the misunderstanding on the Ibadan Chieftaincy reform as an opportunity to portray themselves as authentic Mogajis and thereby causing distraction.”t
In the communique jointly signed by the Chairman, who is also the Mogaji Ariyori, Oja Oke Ado, Alhaji Asimiyu Ariyori and the General Secretary, Mogaji ElegbaOwo, Alhaji Isiaka Elegbaowo issued at the end of a meeting held at Mapo Hall, Ibadan, the 63 Mogajis declared that the Ibadan Council of Recognised Mogajis had been in existence since the time of the forefathers and as such recognized by the Olubadan in Council.
They stressed that it was unfortunate that some ‘faceless’ people are using the misunderstanding on the Ibadan Chieftaincy reform as an opportunity to portray themselves as authentic Mogajis and thereby causing distraction, adding that “no genuine Mogaji is part of the rancor, nor interested in any crisis in Ibadan or a divided Ibadan, but only interested in the development of Ibadan land as well as that of her leaders.”
“It is only the Ibadan Council of Recognised Mogajis that knows what is going on in Ibadan and participates actively in the affairs/running of Ibadan. We participate actively during Oke Badan, Egungun and Ose Meji festivals which are paramount in Ibadanland under the leadership of the Olubadan of Ibadanland. If there is any function/ceremony concerning Olubadan, we are the ones who will go there as recognized Mogajis and legitimate sons of Olubadan.”
The recognised 63 Mogajis however urged the Oyo state government, the Olubadan, the newly created Obas in Council and elders in Ibadanland to come together for the progress and development of Ibadanland.
“We are not part of any rancor, not interested in any crisis in Ibadan or a divided Ibadan. We want united Ibadan and we are interested in the development of Ibadan land as well as that of our leaders. The Chieftaincy reform was done in good faith and it brought elevation to our father, the Olubadan of Ibadanland, the Olubadan in Council, Baales and the entire people of Ibadanland.
“We want the understanding of the people and we do not want the four dissidents so called Mogajis to destabilize the peace in Ibadanland as well as misinform the people. Anybody that is a traditional Mogaji in Ibadan will be among us. We do not want crisis in Ibadan and we are appealing to the four Mogajis, who are calling themselves Authentic Mogajis to desist from activities that can cause
disharmony in the city.
“We are not politicians; we are traditional chiefs of the city. They (The four mogajis) are politicians and that is why they cannot be with us. We wonder why four people will be more than us? We therefore implore the Government, our father, Kabiyesi, the Olubadan of Ibadanland, the newly created Obas in Council and Elders in Ibadanland to come together for the progress and development of Ibadanland.”