BY SAM EYOBOKA & OLAYINKA LATONA

Traditional ruler of Ifewara, His Royal Majesty, Oba Hezekiah Adeniyi Owolola started by defending the notion that Ifewara is a small community. “That is a very wrong notion. Initially, we used to have two Oonis, the Ooni of Ife and Ooni of Ifewara. It was changed around 1935 to Olufewara but when I got to the throne, I changed it to Adimula of Ifewara. Adimula means a powerful one you can run to in times of problems or challenges and he is able to save you,” he stated.

When did you ascend the throne?
About 34 years ago and I was very young then. I was about 23 years old then. I have been on the throne before Baba Adeboye became the General Overseer of the RCCG.

How was your relationship with him?

He is my father! He trained me when I was young and I am one of his followers.

How has Pastor Adeboye affected the Ifewara community?
Pastor Adeboye has touched our lives in numerous ways. As small as we are, we have eight branches of the RCCG here in Ifewara and I am not including other villages around us; if I am to include them, we will have almost 50. Ifewara has virtually everything that is in a big city; we have schools, roads, pipe borne water and hospitals. Recently, government has perfected plans to build a police college in Ifewara. We have already given them about 200 hectares of land. There is also a private polytechnic here, but we are still appealing to Pastor Adeboye to locate a satellite campus of Redeemers University of Nigeria, RUN, in Ifewara.

*His Royal Majesty, Oba Hezekiah Adeniyi Owolola, The Adimula of Ifewara.

But the Ife-Ifewara Road is not too good…
That road was constructed almost 20 years ago and as we all know, any road that has been used for 10 years needs to be rehabilitated but our governments are very good in constructing roads, but not good in maintaining.

The problem of the road is poor maintenance, but I heard that the Osun State government will soon rehabilitate it, probably this year. But the road from Ilesha to Ifewara is very good.

What is your message to Pastor Adeboye as he celebrates his 69th birthday?
As the traditional head of Ifewara, I pray that God should give him long life and good health for him to reap the fruit of his labour. Pastor Adeboye is a very hard working man and I pray that the Lord will prolong his life, and as long as he lives he will not see the end of his children.

What is your advice to Nigerians and Ifewara indigenes as we are approaching another general election?
They should allow peace to reign in Nigeria generally and in Ifewara and its environs. Also, the politicians should allow peace to reign in all states of the federation. We want peace in Nigeria and they should know that nothing can be achieved without God.

Serving the masses is not by force; they should allow Nigerians to vote for the people of their choice and allow God to guide us in the nation. Either as Christians or Muslims, we are serving one God. Let the peace of God reign in every part of the nation. Nigerians should allow peace to reign, during the forthcoming election and anything we are doing in this life we should always be conscious of heaven where is our last home.
In Ifewara we are all dwelling in peace. Both Christians and Muslims are leaving together without any problem or crisis.

Even one of Ifewara’s Imams gave out his daughter to a Christian for marriage and anytime there is any programme in the church, the Imam with his congregation always attend and I also attend their Muslim programme with my turban.

All these people causing religious crisis in the North should embrace peace and love each other. We are serving only one God. What is happening there is very wrong. All the killings should stop.

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