Ekiti women protest imposition of monarch by state government

Women of Ikere Ekiti, Ekiti State on Monday trooped out en masse to protest against alleged plan by the government in collaboration with kingmakers to impose Prince Adejimi Adu as the traditional ruler of the town.

The women converged on Odo Oja Roundabout singing abusive songs against the state government, the kingmakers and some prominent indigenes of the community backing Adu.

The aggrieved women carried placards with inscriptions, “Money Should Not Determine the Next Ogoga,” “Mr. Governor, Don’t Approve Jimi Adu as the Next Ogoga,” “Don’t Use Voting to Select New Ogoga,” “It Is Not in Our Tradition to Choose Ogoga by Voting,” and “Consult Ifa Oracle, No Voting,” among others.

Expressing fears that a wrong choice could be made, they condemned alleged directive of the government that the choice of a new Ogoga should be decided through voting by kingmakers insisting that Ifa Oracle must be consulted in line with the custom and tradition of the town.
One of the protesters, Mrs. Funmi Adegbesan, said, “We want them to commence the process afresh, and they should consult the Ifa Oracle. We don’t want the Ogoga to be chosen through an election by the kingmakers who have been compromised.

“The Ikere women are angry against the kingmakers for collecting bribes and we have lost confidence in most of them. They should choose the next Ogoga through the Ifa Oracle.”
Another protester, Mrs. Anike Obasoro, said the women in the town would not allow Adu to reign as Ogoga warning that there would be terrible consequences if imposed as the monarch.
Obasoro said, “We will not allow Jimi Adu to reign in Ikere, he can become king in Lagos but he will not become king in Ikere because he is not a prince.

“If they impose him on us, there will be trouble and the town will not enjoy peace. We are warning them not to impose him on us because government will not be able to control what will happen thereafter.”
The men of the Nigeria Police, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps and Department of State Services were on hand to ensure that the protest was not hijacked by hoodlums.

The Deputy Governor, Kolapo Olusola, who is an Ikere indigene met with the Regent, Princess Ayooye Adegboye-Oyinlola and other chiefs where they met for over one hour.

Emerging from the private meeting with the Regent and chiefs, Olusola denied allegation that Governor Ayodele Fayose wanted to impose a candidate as the Ogoga saying neither he nor the governor had an interest in who would become the king.

Olusola said the matter was in the hands of the kingmakers as government could not impose any of the candidate but that the law allowed them to use voting to choose the Ogoga-elect.

The deputy governor’s explanation that the law allows kingmakers to choose the Oba-elect by voting triggered shouts of disapproval from the crowd as they continued to challenge the deputy governor.
Olusola continued, “Out of all the candidates, it is one of them them that will be picked and Government’s guidelines allow voting.

“If we want peace, let us be patient and we should not encourage violence. We should allow peace to reign and nobody should disrupt the peace of Ikere.

“I want you to remember that there is a government in place and no government will fold its arms and allow people to take the law into their hands. I beg all of you, let us allow peace to reign.”
Credit: Kamarudeen Ogundele/Punch