By KIKELOMO SHONIBARE, Lagos
The Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, is confident that if late Yoruba leader, Chief Obafemi Awolowo were to reincarnate, he would willing be a member of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
According to a statement from the Oyo State Media crew, he stated this while speaking at a celebratory session between him and Oyo Metro community as part of activities marking his monarch’s 45th coronation anniversary, in Oyo, on Saturday.
“What are we even talking about? If (Chief Obafemi) Awolowo reincarnates today, he will join the APC, because he was a progressive and APC is a progressive and people-oriented party. So I have no apologies for supporting them,” he said
The foremost traditional ruler affirmed his support for the ruling APC, urging those yet to embrace the broom revolution in his kingdom, particularly citizens of Oyo West, to have a rethink and team up with the Ajimobi-led administration.
Alaafin said, “I’m saying this with every sense of responsibility and I want to be quoted, we are fully supportive of Ajimobi’s drive to give Oyo State a new lease of life. He is doing well and I want my people to continue to support him.
“I want to, once again, call on the people of Oyo West to embrace the APC. We can’t gain anything from the opposition. If Ajimobi is not doing well, I won’t support or ask you to queue behind him. Some people sometimes accused me of taking sides with the governor. But the man is doing very well.”
The Alaafin warned the gangsters disturbing the peace of his kingdom to turn a new leaf or face the full wrath of the law.
In his remarks, Oyo State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, attributed his close to six-year cordial relationship with the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, to the monarch’s altruism, understanding and sense of balancing in all matters since he became governor.
Describing the monarch in glowing terms, the governor said that their intimacy had continued to surprise many people; especially those he said had predicted that the monarchs support for him would not last beyond one year.
He urged Yoruba sons and daughters to accord more respect to the stool of Alaafin, whom he described as a repertoire of Yoruba history and culture, savvy and intellectually deep.
Ajimobi said, “I make bold to say that the Alaafin stands out among traditional rulers in this country. He is deep intellectually. He is bold and courageous. He does not suffer fools gladly. Baba has a sense of balancing and appropriateness.
“He is a very considerate man that has been so supportive of our administration and I’m yet to see his equal. Many have insinuated that our cordial relationship will not last beyond one year. But it’s now almost six years and counting. This has been possible because Baba is savvy and very considerate.
“Alaafin is a monarch we have to continue to revere because of his panache, finesse, boldness, courage and accommodation. I have no doubt that you will reign for long and we will always be here to celebrate you.”
The governor said that Yoruba were unarguably the most learned and exposed today, having contributed hugely to the body of knowledge in all spheres of human endeavour at home and in the Diaspora.
Ajimobi advised the Yoruba to love one another and abstain from the pull-him-down syndrome, which, he said, was responsible for the deluge of petitions before the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission authored by Yoruba against their kinsfolk.
He was equally worried that the race was now lagging behind in development indices because of lack of cooperation and political leadership tussle.
The governor said, “Go to EFCC today. Yoruba have more petitions written against Yoruba, which are mostly frivolous. I don’t know why we should hate ourselves. We are lagging behind today because of conspiracies. Let us have a rethink and move our region forward.”
Reacting to the worries of representatives of the Oyo community, Ajimobi assured them that his administration would complete all the ongoing projects in the area, insisting that he would not bequeath any unfinished project to his successor.