Indigenes of Ojo town in Ajowa–Akoko, Akoko North West Local Govt area of Ondo State are divided over the choice of regent to succeed the late monarch, Oba Timothy Adewale, who joined his ancestors earlier in the year.
Some members of the community led by Baba Eto of Uro kingdom in Ojo-Ajowa, Chief Jacob Adegoke who addressed newsmen on Tuesday in Akure, are of the view that a daughter of the late monarch should be the regent.
Baba Eto alleged that some members of the community are, however pushing for a male regent, which according to him negates their tradition.
Baba Eto also alleged some government officials of backing some ‘asylum seekers’ who want to contest the stool of Olojo of Ojo, Ajowa Akoko with the native people.
According to him, Oba Obaro Akila was the first Olojo of Ojo with his people in 1700-1777 administrative arrangement put in place in the settlement referred to as Ojo.
He added that “thereafter, some people from different areas came to seek refuge in Ojo during the reign of the 3rd Olojo of Ojo, Oba Olaremu Fajuwon, 1778 -1838. They were granted assylum and were put in different locations round the seat of power at Aremu”.
“Oba Obaro Akila was a great warrior, hence, his settlement attracted people for protection. Aremu community has been producing Oba since time memorial”.
“With their imaginary supporters in the ministry, documents in Olojo of Ojo chieftaincy file were removed. Sudden disappearance of some Ojo documents submitted to the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy affairs”.
“Why should people and the Ministry of Local Government rely on sentiments when facts and evidences are available. We are relying on facts and evidences and not sentiments”.
“To all Aremu people, 17th of October, 2023 was a black day in the history of Ojo when a kangaroo declaration was illegally made to snatch away the right of the indigenous native people of Ojo”.
“The chieftaincy declaration made in 1957, registered on April 8, 1958 approved Awarinajo, Awarin Oji and Awarin Olofa as the 3 rulling houses”.
“When the last Olojo of Ojo departed to the great beyond, the 3 rulling houses met and selected his daughter as Regent in line with our age long custom and tradition”.
“The asylum seekers on our land are presenting a male regent outside the rulling houses and a certain people in the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs are supporting this illegal move against our custom and tradition”.
Chief Adegoke alongside with two other elders, Mr Akinyemi Bolanle and Hon. Oluwasegun Ojo who spoke on behalf of the indigenes of the community, stressed that their tolerance of non-indigenes should not be taken for granted.
They, however, called on the state government to protect their regent, Princess Sarah Adewale, the daughter of the departed monarch of the town, Oba Timothy Adewale, stressing that they don’t want male regent again.
They also appealed to the state government to follow the previous declaration in picking new Oba for the community.
No member of the opposing side, could be contacted as at press time.
Meanwhile, the Commissioner for Chieftaincy Affairs in the State, Tanimu Takuro said the government is aware of the imbroglio between the groups.
Takuro said Governor Akeredolu won’t interfere and had never interfere in the affairs of who emerges as traditional rulers in towns in the State.
The Commissioner added that the two groups have been told to meet to settle their differences and come back to the government in a couple of weeks.