By Rotimi Ojomoyela
Ado-Ekiti—Crisis is now brewing at Ilogbo Ekiti, in Ido/ Osi Local Government area of Ekiti State, as a ruling house raised eyebrow over desperate attempt being made by some people to establish a new royal family that was allegedly alien to history and tradition of the town.
The royal dynasty of ‘Ebi – Oke Owa’ of Ilogbo-Ekiti, accused another family called Isape of allegedly constituting themselves into an illegal royal dysnasty under the acronym ‘Ile Aafin’ to get recognition from the state government.
The Ebi Oke Owa, comprising Eyigbo, Onigbogbonisan, Okegbala/Akodi, Ule Abaluroye , Ule Abaluare and Ule Aginringan, completely denounced what they described as false claim by the Isape people, who they said had “untruthfully and fraudulently constituted themselves as Ile Aafin, which was unknown to Ilogbo-Ekiti History.
The aggrieved royal family, led by Prince David Agbetuyi ,in a press statement co- signed by other Princes on Monday, said they reserved exclusive rights to the stool according to history contrary to the position being maintained by their new rival.
Agbeyuyi said: “It is only when an Owalogbo-elect is chosen from amongst all the royal families of Ebi Oke-Owa, which constituted the various ruling houses to the Owalogbo stool that the chosen king would now be taken to reside at Aafin to govern the entire community accordingly.
“The Lands housing the Aoain and adjoining lands all belong to the community and not the Isape family”, they said.
According to Agbetuyi, the Isape people migrated to Ilogbo-Ekiti from Ora Ekiti after the Ebi Oke Owa had been constituted and they had their recognised head just like other ruling houses within the dynasty.
Agbetuyi further averred that all the historical literatures and Oral tradition of Ilogbo-Ekiti history agreed that the first Settler on the Lands now known as Ilogbo-Ekiti Community was ‘Ejemu Okunbobua’ ,a crowned prince of the Owa Obokun, Ilesha in the present Osun State.
He added: “It was also agreed that the first Owalogbo was Oba Ayikaiye Aka, who came to Ilogbo-Ekiti with other families members from Ilesa supports and references on the statement above can be found in the book: ‘The Contemporary History of Ilogbo Ekiti published in 2010 by Busuyi Oluwasanmi.
“The above statement was equally to the knowledge of the present Owalogbo, Oba Dr. Edward Ajayi, who was also acknowledged in the book by the Author under Acknowledgment and whose photograph is on page III of the aforesaid book.
“And as a matter of fact, the fact stated above was duly authorized by the present Owalogbo of Ilogbo-Ekiti, Oba Edward Ajayi , he even wrote a message from the throne therein at pages vi – viii thereby endorsing the contents”.
“In the Memorandum filed by Oba Ajayi to the Chieftaincy Commission of Inquiry headed by the Hon. Justice Oyewole dated 19th March, 2018, he acknowledged Oba Ayekaiye as the first Owalogbo of Ilogbo-Ekiti”.
“Also as far back as earlier May, 1961, the late Josie Abe , a known and widely recognized prolific writer of Ilogbo-Ekiti Origin also acknowledged Oba Ayikaiye as the First Owalogbo in his published work about Ilogbo history”.
“The descendants of the first Ejemu and founder of the town are still very much around in Ilogbo community and they know clearly the descendants of the Oba Ayikaiye amongst the Ebi Oke-Owa that their progenitor had the pact that the first king should rule over the town despite being a prince”.
“Consequently, the claim by the Isape people to Oba Arugbo Abanefunfun as the First Owalogbo of Ilogbo-Ekiti is completely false, misleading and a blatant distortion of facts relating to the Owalogbo of Ilogbo-Ekiti Stool, having regards to all the literatures above”, he concluded .
Agbetuyi further explained that Isape people are not in any way related to the first Owalogbo and can’t claim a separate royalty, adding that the memorandum filed craving the inclusion of the descendants of the first to eleventh Owalogbos as Ebi -Oke Owa, was filed very late at the Chieftaincy Tribunal and could not be accommodated on account of the late filing.