By Akinwande Soji-Ojo
Oyo State Governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde, has declared that the Alaafin of Oyo Chieftaincy Declaration would be strictly followed in appointing a new monarch for the town.
The governor stated this in Oyo on Saturday, at the state burial organised for the late Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III, who died on April 22.
The governor, according to a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Taiwo Adisa, said the state had lost an irreplaceable king and an encyclopaedia of Yoruba history and culture.
“People may feel we were not in good terms before his departure but that was not true. In 2015, when I was campaigning to be the governor of Oyo State, he was one of the few people that told me the truth.
“There was a particular night I came to meet him and he told me it won’t be possible for me to win that election because I didn’t have a structure and trustworthy persons in each zone in the state.
“Truly, when the election came, I lost but it is on record that Kabiyesi was one of those who told me the truth. When I became the governor, I came to meet Baba for some pieces of advice and he explained some certain things to me. I marvelled at how he got to know all those stories.
‘‘So, Baba was an encyclopaedia of our history and culture.
“I can only say that we have lost a king that is irreplaceable but we have to accept the fact that we cannot question God. God was merciful to Baba because it is not easy to spend more than 50 years on the throne.
‘‘So, it is celebration of life for us today.
“Let me also use this opportunity to let our people in Oyo know that the process to select a new Alaafin will not go beyond the Alaafin of Oyo Chieftaincy Declaration.
“I have seen people who came to me and said that the first Alaafin gave birth to about 13 children and that only two out of them were recognised and this is an opportunity to bring in the others, and I asked them if it is in the declaration. But they said it is inside a declaration that was not signed.
“I told them that a new Alaafin will be selected only through the declaration that was signed,’’ the governor said.
In her welcome address, the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs Olubamiwo Adeosun, stated that the monarch was known for consistently blessing governments with quality advice on all issues.
She said: “Looking at the trajectory of this unique Oba, one would easily conclude that Oba Adeyemi was born to be a king. He had the vision to be the Alaafin from a young age and prepared himself for that great assignment.
“As we can all see, nature did the rest for him, and he was chosen as the Alaafin on November 18, 1970.”