A week-long activity was organised to commemorate the 10 years anniversary of 19th Olofin of Isheri -Olofin, Ogun State, Oba Nurudeen Adewale Adekanmbi. After the event, the monarch spoke with Our Correspondent SUNDAY ROTILEFON on his Isheri-Olofin Community, its place in Yoruba history and ranking, the historical background of Isheri and the proposed Awori National Summit. He says the Aworis are not been given their desired right of place…
Isheri-Olofin, A Historical Town
Isheri-Olofin is a historical town in Ogun State Nigeria and Africa. A hunter named Ogunfunminire, which literally translates-god of iron has given me success- built the community. He was from a royal family in Ile-Ife and lived many years until he saw his fourth generation.
Ogunfunminire, for the record, was the first Olofin of Isheri called Olofin Agbodere who was given an official title of the Olofin Awogun Joye.
Isheri people are referred to as the source of Aworis (the descendants of Olofin Ogunfuminire) who are spread all over Lagos and Ogun states and are believed to have migrated from Ile-Ife. The people of Isheri also settled in Ota, Igbesa, Ilobi, Jigbo, Ado-Odo, Ibaragun, Gan-un, Agbara, etc.
It is also unrecorded that because of Ogunfunminire’s influence in the entire Lagos, he allocated several pieces of land at Iddo, Ebutte-Metta, Surulere, Somolu, Bariga to the Oloto.
He also allotted Ijora up to iganmu and others to Ojora while he gave out all the land from Odo Iya Alaro up to the boundary of Egba territory to Akesan absolutely in respect of his magnanimity.
The community has about 200,000 inhabitants and share boundary with Lagos State. There are four ruling houses in Isheri Olofin namely Olubiyi/Akinlolu, Taiwo Olowo, Onigbakunle and Ayodele
Isheri Witnessing Sustained Transformation
There is no gain saying the fact that in the last 10 years, isheri has been witnessing transformation in terms of social, economic and infrastructural development. I have embarked on proactive measures aimed at uplifting the standard of people of the community.
During my tenure, many companies are springing up in the area, private schools are on increase, government presence and participation in the state affairs is unprecedented and community has grown to an envious town.
Participation in Governance
There is no Isheri indigene that is holding important position either as a career or political appointment. If you have six slots for Egba people, it is by force that one of such slots will be allocated to Awori. We are tired of sitting at the back seat we want to be part of the people that matters in the state. Our non-inclusion when giving political appointments is affecting the development of the community. Successive governments have been enjoying our support and we are appealing to them to look into our plight by appointing our sons and daughters into political positions.
Position of Olofin
When the past administration elevated some traditional rulers, I was one of the beneficiaries. I’m a member of Egba Traditional Council of Obas. But Awori in Ogun State deserves a division; the stool of Olofin deserves better recognition because the Olofin is a direct descendant of Oduduwa. It will be ungrateful for anyone to talk of traditional rulers in Yorubaland without mentioning Olofin because he migrated from Ile Ife. The stool of Olofin should be given rightful position in the committee of Obas because what is sauce for the goose should be saurce for the gander. The population in Yewa or Remo is not more than Awori, therefore, we deserve our own division and our paramount ruler.
Upgrading of Baales to Obas
The present government in the state in reviewing the traditional and chieftaincy laws promise that corrections would be made in respect of all the abnormalities. Some Baales were politically elevated without due process. There is no division between traditional rulers in Egbaland’ we are solidly behind the present government of Senator Ibikunle Amosun.
Awori National Summit
The proposed Awori National Summit is scheduled to hold in November 2014. The summit is overdue for Awori sons and daughters. The traditional rulers in Aworiland have agreed to put heads together to deliberate on how to move Awori forward. It will involve both Aworis in Ogun and Lagos states. The government in Ogun State is seeing us as a minority but we want them to know that we are equally important like other tribes too. The composition of Awori in Ogun State is enough for us to have our own paramount ruler.
The community lack good access roads, pipe borne water, social amenities and infrastructural development. The Olofin Palace road from Lagos-Ibadan expressway is already overdue for construction. There should be a road befitting of the palace
Relationship Between Isheri and Hausa Communities
We are all living together in harmony. Both communities are solidly behind me. They always respond to my calls and follow my advice to the letter. There is no dispute between us.
Advice to the youths
We are mentoring our youths on how to live a good life. They should be hard working and always shun violence and riot. They should live a peaceful life and not to engage themselves in any criminal activity. Isheri is a very peaceful community.