The sleepy town of Oba-Ile in Osun State witnessed a massive turnout of people, who trooped to the town in honour of the first coronation anniversary of the Oloba of Oba-Ile, Oba Adekunle Oyeyemi. TUNDE BUSARI reports
Since 1980 when Aderonmu Grammar school was founded in Oba-Ile, Osun State, scarcely had the school witnessed the size of human traffic that converged on the school premises last Saturday in honour of the Oloba of Oba-Ile, Oba Adekunle Oyeyemi.
On April 7, 2017, the monarch, a doctorate degree holder received his staff of office from the Osun State Governor Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, the reason he brought his fellow traditional rulers and creme-de-la-crème of the society to his domain for his first anniversary celebration.
The event, which organizing committee was inaugurated by Oba Oyeyemi in January, lived up to expectations, in terms of arrangement and other logistics. The massive canopy under which the proceedings held, added aesthetic value to the occasion with all guests relishing cool breeze from vegetating surrounding of the venue.
A cultural troupe from Osun State Council of Arts and Culture, appearing in Ofi fabrics, provided cultural flavour and dance to the invitees, including a delegate from Ghana, home of the Olori, Agnes Oyeyemi.
Different panegyrics of personalities sung by the group brought out the cultural significance of the anniversary with the sons and daughters of Oba-Ile, dressed in uniform Ankara fabrics, a showing love to their traditional ruler.
Remarkably, Oba Oyeyemi did not keep his guests waiting as he arrived the venue in company of his Olori and welcomed the guests who, one after the other, paid him obeisance.
After opening prayers were said according to three religions, the programme was formally flagged of with an address by the chairperson of the organizing committee, Chief Toyin Adegbola who expressed her joy in the attendance and encouraged the emphasized on the N50 Education Endowment Fund for Oba-Ile indigent students.
But before Adegbola’s address, the Eesa of Iragbiji, Chief Muraina Oyelami prayed for Oba Oyeyemi and poured verbal libation on him to the amazement of the audience who chorused ‘Aseee’.
It was indeed the day of the Oloba who maintained his natural calmness beside his wife but had his eyes on all his guests. The Chairman of Olorunda Local Government, Honourable Munirudeen Anisu and his Olorunda North Local Council Development Area counterpart, Honourable Quadri Owonikoko were fully on ground also receiving visitors and monitoring the progress of the colourful event.
The highpoint of the anniversary was the installation of some personalities with chieftaincy titles performed by a team of Oba-Ile traditional chiefs, including the Balogun of Oba-Ile, the famous theatre practitioner, Dr Kola Oyewo, who particularly complemented Oba Oyeyemi throughout the event.
The traditional Akoko leaf was inserted into the head wears of the new chiefs right in front of the Oloba who prayed and charged them to always identify with the course of the town.
Chief Samuel Olu Alabi and his wife, Mrs Funke Alabi were made Asiwaju and Yeye Asiwaju; Chief Adedotun Ajala, Bobajiro; Mrs Deborah Ajala, Yeye Bobajiro; Chief Olasehide Ogunrinde, Otunba Atobase and Mrs Adenike Ogunrinde, Yeye Otunba Atobase.
Conscious of a section of the public’s perception of such titles, Oba Oyeyemi explained that the choice of his new chiefs followed a meticulous scrutiny of their antecedents, especially in the area of human development.
He explained that Otunba Atobase and Yeye Otunba Atobase had demonstrated that they were round peg in round hole based on his close contact with them in the Diaspora where they were all resident before until lately.
“I have found this wonderful couple worthy of these titles. I can even say it is a dream which finally came to fruition. We have shared some experiences together outside the shores of Nigeria. Others too are equally worthy and I am saying it will all sense of humility that they are the pride of this society,” he said.
Though the organizing committee did its best in staging a memorable show, failure to get Oba Oyeyemi a microphone to read his welcome address on his seat was a dark side of their assessment card.
However, former Commissioner of Information and Strategy, Honourable Sunday Akere, who is a member of the committee, extolled the virtues of the Oloba, describing him as a traditional ruler with class.
Olori Agnes Oyeyemi extended her appreciation to the guests, especially members of her family from Ghana for their steadfastness while the event lasted, adding that she was overwhelmed by the response to their invites.
“I cannot express my happiness enough at the honour given us by our guests who came from different places. It points to the fact that Kabiyesi is loved. And we are going to push harder in giving a transformed Oba-Ile to the world,” she enthused.