The Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu and the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi have been trending on social media after a video clip where Oba Akiolu responded to the Ooni with a somewhat dismissive wave of hand after the later approached him to give him a handshake.
The clip generated outrage on social media as commenters say the Ooni’s throne is the most powerful in Yorubaland.
The Director of Media and Public Affairs in the Ooni’s Palace, Moses Olafare had earlier said that the monarch is not ready to release any official statement on the issue, adding that he still accords his Lagos counterpart the respect he deserves.
However, the Head of Palace Directorate of Tourism, Awoyemi Tunde, speaking to Premium Times, said that the Palace “will call on the ancestors on the issue,” if it does not receive an apology.
“It is not a slap on the Ooni of Ife but rather a slap on the Oba of Lagos. The stool of Oba of Lagos was founded by Olofin Ogunfunminire and the Ooni of Ife is the Oba of Yoruba land. The Oba of Lagos has to come to terms with the fact that Ooni is the royal father of Yorubaland, it is necessary that all persons come together to unite Yoruba land but really the issue at the event is very condemnable,” Tunde said.
“God gave Ooni of Ife Oba Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, the mandate to unite the Yoruba land and nothing will stop him from doing that,” he added.
Tunde was quoted as saying: “If we don’t receive an apology especially with the image of Ile-Ife, we will call on the ancestors on the issue.”
Meanwhile, Lateef Aderibigbe Ajose, the Opeluwa Onido of Lagos, one of the white cap chiefs in Oba Akiolu’s Palace has said that the monarch did not snub the Ooni, Nigerian Tribune reports.
“The sign by Oba Akiolu signifies, ‘inu mi, inu e’, the culture of greeting in Lagos. if Oba Akiolu wanted to ignore, he would have turned his face away from Ooni.
There is no misunderstanding between both highly revered Monarchs in Yoruba Land. Oba Akiolu was well represented at the coronation of Ooni of Ife, which attested to the fact that he does not disregard the office of Ooni Adeyeye.
There is no sentiment in the culture of Lagos. As we met it that is the way we are doing it. Kabiesi Oba Akiolu is trying to bring back the old pattern, the old culture we have left behind.
What happened that day was wrongly speculated by the social media to disrupt peace and order and misinterpret Oba Akiolu’s action. We just want to appeal to the social media to stop spreading wrong information.
They should try and understand the reason behind every action carried out most especially by traditional rulers. Yoruba has a very rich culture. There is no quarrel between the Oba of Lagos and Ooni of Ife,” he said.