Palpable fear gripped Ekiti State on Thursday as strong indications emerged Governor Kayode Fayemi was allegedly making moves to dethrone the Ewi of Ado-Ekiti, Oba Rufus Adejugbe and 10 other aggrieved prominent traditional rulers in the state otherwise called ‘pelupelu Obas’.
The affected Obas include Ewi of Ado-Ekiti Oba Rufus Adejugbe; Oloye of Oye Oba Oluwole Ademolaju; Elekole of Ikole Oba Adewumi Fasiku; Elemure of Emure Oba Emmanuel Ogunleye; Ajero of Ijero Oba Joseph Adewole; Alara of Aramoko, Oba Adegoke Adeyemi.
Others are: Ogoga of Ikere-Ekiti Oba Samuel Adejimi; Olomuo of Omuo Oba Noah Omonigbehin; Alaaye of Efon Oba Emmanuel Aladejare; Ologotun of Oguntun Oba Samuel Oyebade and Olujudo of Ido-Faboro, Oba Ayorinde Ilori-Faboro.
The monarchs, according to a reliable source in the Government House, Ado-Ekiti, might be dethroned for their absence at Government functions and Obas Council’s statutory meetings.
There has been an intractable crisis between Fayemi and the most prominent traditional rulers over the rejection of Alawe of Ilawe-Ekiti, Oba Adebanji Alabi, as the new chairman of Ekiti traditional Council.
The prominent monarchs had on August 9 instituted litigation with registration number HAD/76/2019 before an Ado-Ekiti High Court, challenging the appointment of Oba Alabi by Governor Fayemi.
In a writ of summons file, the 17 Obas urged the court to reverse Fayemi’s action on the premise that Alawe was not recognised by statute to chair the council.
They claimed they had the exclusive rights to head the council, among the 22 members, in line with the extant tradition and the State Chieftaincy Laws.
The aggrieved 17 monarchs said they were opposed to the appointment and threatened they won’t attend the inauguration of Alawe as Council Chairman and any meeting of the council where he presides.
However, five out of the 17 aggrieved prominent monarchs- Onisan of Isan Ekiti Oba Gabriel Adejuwon; Attah of Ayede-Ekiti, Oba Abdulmumin Orisagbemi; Onitaji of Itaji-Ekiti Oba Idowu Babalola; Owa of Oke-Imesi, Oba Gbadebo Adedeji and Arinjale of Ise-Ekiti, Oba Ajayi Adetunji back-pedaled and have been attending the council meeting presided over by Oba Alabi.
But, since the appointment was made on July 31, the other 11 aggrieved Obas, shunned the council meeting and government function owing to the impression that Alawe was politically promoted to that rank and that he was not qualified to occupy the exalted seat.