The Awujale and paramount ruler of Ijebuland in Ogun State, Oba Sikiru Adetona, has warned the people of Ijebuland not to politicise the selection of his successor.
Adetona spoke at the 2019 edition of the Ojude Oba festival at the Awujale Pavillion on Tuesday in Ijebu-Ode.
He urged them to ensure that they abided by whoever emerged as the most qualified to continue the tradition of love and unity in Ijebuland.
The monarch also warned that moneybags who could derail the peace of the town must not be considered for the stool.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the festival, with the theme: “The Uniqueness of Ijebu Nation,” had in attendance Governor Dapo Abiodun as well as former Governors of the state, Segun Osoba and Gbenga Daniel.
Also present was the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, among other dignitaries.
The Awujale, who noted that death was inevitable, insisted that a proper selection process must be adhered to in choosing his successor to ensure the continuous socio-cultural and economic development of Ijebuland.
He said: “When I eventually go, please go for a capable successor.
“Reject any candidate that will put Ijebuland into retrogression.
“Do not politicise the process of selecting my successor.
“Do not go for people that will draw Ijebu backwards.
“If the next ruling house does not present a viable candidate, please reject them and go for the next ruling house with capable candidate.
“Do not go for moneybags that will destroy the achievements Ijebuland has recorded so far.
“My prayer is that Ijebuland will continue to grow from strength to strength.
“God will give you direction when picking my successor; ask God to guide you.”
The monarch also commended the age groups (regberegbe) for their contributions to the successful organisation of the annual event and expressed optimism that the festival would continue to be a model of unity to the nation.
Speaking on the uniqueness of the Ojude Oba festival, Abiodun noted that it had become a unifying traditional festival among the Ijebu and the entire people of Ogun State.
He commended the Awujale for his fatherly role in ensuring peace and unity in his domain and assured that his administration would continue to support activities capable of fostering unity and love among the people.
The governor also reassured the people of Ogun State of his commitment to security of lives and property in the state.