The Olubadan-in-Council, on Wednesday, declared that it will no longer recognise the title of Eze Ndigbo and has, therefore, ordered leaders of Igbo in Ibadanland to report to one of its chiefs, Baale Ekotedo, Dr Taiye Ayorinde, henceforth.
The decision was reached after a meeting by the council, held at the Popoyemoja palace of the Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji.
The meeting was attended by members of the council, including High Chief Lekan Balogun, High Chief Rashidi Ladoja, High Chief Olufemi olaifa, High Chief Tajudeen Ajibola and the Iyalode, Alhaja Aminat Abiodun.
The two Igbo factions, led by Dr Alex Anozie and Chief Alloy Obi and their teams were also present at the palace and were called inside for a briefing accordingly.
Speaking with journalists after the meeting, the Osi Balogun of Ibadanland, High Chief Ajibola, said the council did not recognise them because nobody could bear the title of “His Royal Majesty” in Olubadan domain.
According to Ajibola, “the only Oba in Ibadanland is His Highness, Oba Saliu Adetunji. So, no other person can call himself ‘His Royal Highness’ in Ibadan.
This is because we have three levels in the traditional chieftaincy system in Ibadanland. We have the Olubadan, his High Chiefs and we have the Baales, any other person comporting himself in form of royal highnesses is a counterfeit.
“So, Royal Ndigbo or any club, association or their heads comes under the Baale in that respective domain. So, if you say Eze Ndigbo or what, you come under the Baale Ekotedo.
So anything they have to do, they cannot come to the Kabiyesi directly. The Olubadan has somebody representing him.
“During the war days, we have them at the borders. We have Baale of Ido at the border, Baale Egbeda at the Egbeda point and at Oluyole point and so many Baales like that as representatives of Olubadan and they are warriors. They stand till today, any other person that want to be a leader must come under that respective Baale. So Eze of Ndigbo comes under the rulership of Baale of Ekotedo, who reports to Olubadan or Olubadan-in-Council in return.”
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