By Oluseye Ojo

Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde, has officially endorsed Oba Owolabi Olakulehin as the 43rd Olubadan of Ibadanland, following the recommendation of the Olubadan-in-Council.

The governor announced that Oba Olakulehin would be enthroned as soon as he is strong enough for the ceremonial processes.

The endorsement came during the final burial ceremony of the late Olubadan, Oba Lekan Balogun, who passed away on March 14, 2024, at the age of 81.

Despite the heavy rain that poured during the event at Obafemi Awolowo Stadium in Oke-Ado, Ibadan, a large crowd including traditional rulers, religious leaders, government officials, and family members gathered to pay their respects to the late monarch.

Makinde commended the late Oba Balogun for his impactful life and revealed that he had made significant amendments to the Ibadan Chieftaincy Declaration Laws to facilitate the enthronement of the 43rd Olubadan.

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His words: “One thing that I want us to go home with today is that the late Kabiyesi and I did what they think Napoleon cannot do. Myself and the House of Assembly, on Friday, 26th May, 2023, amended the Chieftaincy Laws of Oyo State so that the governor doen’t need to go to the Council of Chiefs to amend the Declaration of Obas.

“Myself and kabiyesi, we amended Ibadan Chieftaincy Declaration. Those who haven’t seen it, let them go and look for it; that is the declaration in force to enthrone the Olubadan of Ibadanland.

On the much-awaited approval of Oba Olakulehin as the 43rd Olubadan, Makinde said: “I have seen the recommendation of the Olubadan-in-Council and I have accepted it. I have accepted it and we will, as soon as our father, Oba Olakulehin is strong enough, he will be enthroned because due process has been followed.

“I want to once again thank you all. To the family, it is we all that lost Baba, but we take solace in the fact that Baba lived a fulfilled and eventful life.”

In attendance were Deputy Governor Bayo Lawal, Acting PDP National Chairman, Ambassador Umar Damagum, and a host of other dignitaries, including former Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai and Aare Musulumi of Yorubaland, Edo and Delta States, Alhaji Makanjuola Akinola.

The event also saw tributes from the younger brother of the late king, Senator Kola Balogun, and President-General, Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes (CCII), Chief Ajeniyi Ajewole, who praised Governor Makinde for his support and role in honouring the late Olubadan.

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