Abiola Ajimobi, Oyo state governor, says though he is empowered by the law to depose Saliu Adetunji, the Olubadan of Ibadan land, if found wanting, he will not do so.
Lately, a crisis has been rocking the traditional institution in the state.
On Monday, gunmen invaded the olubadan’s palace while he was installing some “mogajis and baales” — traditional titleholders in Yoruba land.
The governor said the sad incident showed that the installation was hijacked by some persons, including Rashidi Ladoja, a former governor who is the osi olubadan of Ibadan land.
He said this at a meeting with traditional council heads in the state.
Ajimobi also said he would not be pushed to move against Olubadanthe monarch who “after all is an old man and he is my father”.
“All the relevant sections of the 1959 chieftaincy declarations are very clear on the powers of the governor viz-a-viz the traditional rulers and the administration and particularly sections 26 and 27 empowers the governor to sanction any erring oba,” he said.
“Who bestowed the crown and staff of office on the monarch? Is it not the government? But you see, when a person is in a position as such, he shouldn’t wield his powers every time, particularly against someone who one claims to be his father.
“I have found enough reasons to depose him, but I will never do it. If he likes, let him go to the radio or television to abuse me, I don’t care and I will never use that against him.”
He, however, added that no one is above the law in the state and that everyone must be guided by the dictates of the laws of the land.
The governor added that he would not allow the present crisis to cause acrimony between him and the monarch.
“I sincerely believe that considering the relationship that I have with kabiyesi, the olubadan of Ibadan land as a son, as a brother to my late father, as the Aaare of Ibadan land of which the Olubadan honoured me with that title, I will never do anything to denigrate that position of obaship or go to the extent of sanctioning him by removal or suspension or something else,” he said.
“We will continue to talk to him. The only unfortunate thing there is tha some failed politicians have taken over the palace and they are doing things that Baba himself is not even aware of nor approve of.
“Olubadan is not the state governor. In this Oyo state, the governor is still the head and leader. My gentility is not cowardice but I am just being careful. I am giving you the assurance that I will not remove him. Sooner or later, he will understand better.”