Oba Akiolu of Lagos created an unwarranted stir in the polity, with a statement that a lot of people, including Yoruba believe he should not have made, especially before his Igbo audience.
The Oba wants Ambode to be governor of the state and the visibly angry monarch decreed that the Igbo chiefs must support him or bear the consequences.It is the consequence, the Lagoon swallowing the disobedient, which he spelled out that has gone viral. His audience did not understand him as Akiolu spoke from the depth of Yoruba culture. But they cannot pretend not to understand why Akiolu was angry: Igbo residents on March 28 went absolutely against their hosts for the first time and even now boast they want to instal the next governor of Lagos State, what with Ifeanyi Ubah of TAN now serving as arrow head of Jimi Agbaje’s campaign. Any Yoruba will justifiably be angry. An Oba will even be angrier as he would see the behaviour as an affront.
In Yorubaland, once an Oba takes a public position, everyone must fall in line. It is a taboo to disrespect an Oba. And I should know, afterall I am a prince from Ijebuland. In my town, you dare not, for instance sue the Awujale. It is high taboo.
Our Igbo compatriots need some enlightenment about Yoruba culture. In Yorubaland, we have a saying: “Eni to ba fi oju d’oba, awowo a wo”. It means anyone who disrespects an Oba, will be destroyed by the King’s sword or a big axe. This is the Yoruba belief. I am sure Jimi Agbaje too knows this.
Now making a capital out of what the Oba said is unfortunate and opportunistic. The Oba is not a member of Ambode’s APC. He is just a supporter. And TAN and other soldiers who want to incite people against APC and Ambode should remember that the Oba was such an important member that his son lost the bid for nomination as the APC House of Reps candidate for Lagos island!
Onanuga, a veteran journalist, is the Managing Director of Independent Communication Network Limited, ICNL, the publishers of The NEWS and PM News