Homage as Abodi of Ikaleland marks birthday, coronation anniversary
Ikoya, the cradle of Ikaleland, became a theatre of reunion and sundry socio-cultural activities as His Royal Majesty, Oba George Babatunde Faduyile (Adegun II), celebrated his 80th birthday and 20th anniversary on the throne of Abodi of Ikaleland.
The week-long celebration that culminated in the grand finale on May 26, 2018, featured different events, including a drama presented by popular Lagos-based actor, Yemi Aiyebo (Yemi Mylover); a dance piece by the Calabar resident in Ikoya; and public presentation of a book, The Making of Ikale, written by Oba Faduyile, a seasoned educationist and highly respected retired school principal, in Okitipupa.
Throughout the week, the Abodi Palace in Ikoya became a beehive of activities as monarchs from far and near, government officials and heads of local communities, as well as eminent Ikale sons and daughters trooped in to pay homage to the paramount ruler of the land.
A notable part of the celebration was the visit of Oba Faduyile, accompanied by some Ikale leaders, to the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi (Ojaja II) and Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi.
During the visit, the two leading Yoruba monarchs rekindled memories of the past Abodi as a member of the Western House of Chiefs in the defunct Western Region and the role the monarch played in the development of the then Okitipupa Division, which he represented.
As early as 8 a.m. on May 26, prominent Ikale leaders from Okitipupa and Irele local government areas, and guests from far and near had started thronging Ikoya for the grand finale of the birthday and coronation anniversary held at the Government Field in the town.
By 10 a.m, the venue, almost the size of a football field, was filled up with guests. Among them were groups whose members dressed in attires customized with Oba Faduyile’s photo.
Among the special guests were Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, represented by the Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi; Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Mrs. Lola Fagbemi; Deputy Speaker, Ondo State House of Assembly, Iroju Ogundeji; Chairman, Okitipupa Local Government, Mrs. Morenike Alaka; Chairman, Irele Local Government, Prince Gbadebo Odimayo; Olori Grace Faduyile; Olukare of Ikare and Chairman, Ondo State Council of Chiefs, Oba Akadri Momoh; Osemawe of Ondo, Oba Victor Kiladejo; Deji of Akure, Oba Aladetoyinbo Ogunlade Aladelusi; Kalasuwe of Apoiland, Oba Sunday Adejimola Amuseghan; and former Editor, now member, Editorial Board of The Guardian, Mr. Martins Oloja.
Others are Majuwa of Moribodo, Oba Ernest Adeoye. Oniju of Iju-Odo, Oba Festus Olumoyegun; Luwoye of Erekiti, Oba T.O Kowe; and Malokun of Atijere, Oba Adeoye Edema;
Also in attendance were representatives of the Ooni of Ife, Alaafin of Oyo and the Oba of Benin, Omo N’oba N’edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba Ewuare II.
In his remarks, the deputy governor described Oba Faduyile as a peace-loving king, urging Ikale people to support him in moving Ikaleland to higher heights.
The Olukare of Ikare, Osemawe of Ondo, Deji of Akure and Kalasuwe of Apoiland in turn extolled the virtues of Abodi whom they described as very diligent, God-fearing and well organised.
They praised Oba Faduyile for the peaceful way he conducts himself at the meetings of the state council of chiefs and his rich input into resolutions.
In his tribute that elicited thunderous applause, Oba Olumoyegun affirmed Abodi as the paramount ruler and superior to all the monarchs in Ikaleland.
The Oniju of Iju-Odo, who is a former elected chairman of defunct Ikale Local government (now Okitipupa and Irele local governments) recalled that when he was in office about 29 years ago, the Abodi was the officially recognised most senior Oba in Ikaleland, and was instrumental to the elevation of the lesser monarchs under him.
Oba Olumoyegun, who declared that Oba ju Oba, meaning some kings are higher than others, urged his fellow rulers to shun unhealthy and unnecessary rivalry, maintaining that Abodi is unequalled in Ikaleland from time immemorial.
Oba Faduyile thanked all the guests for their love and support, even as he lauded the planning committee for a job well done. He admonished Ikale people to always work for the unity and progress of the land.
Earlier, Chairman of the occasion, Evangelist Nimbe Ayenuyo, congratulated Oba Faduyile and the entire Ikale sons and daughters for the celebration. He enjoined them to always support the monarch to forge and sustain unity among the people.
Other personalities that attended the event include Mr. Sehinde Akinbuwa; Chief Paddy Arikawe; Chief Kayode Akinnurun; Barrister Morayo Lebi (host); Barrister Abayomi Akeremale; member, House of Representatives, Hon. Mike Akingbehin; Otunba Paul Akintelure; Assistant Commissioner of Police, Bode Ojajuni; Mr. Samuel Akinbo; Barrister Jide Aderehinwo; Mr. Kuye Johnson; and Olanrewaju Braimoh.
Tributes poured in for the Abodi from Gen. Olu Bajowa (rtd); Ikale World Congress; Dr. Salewa Olafioye; Ikoya Development Association (IDA); Okitipupa Oil Palm Plc; Ukonyade Descendants in U.S.A; Ikale Community in Lagos; Omawa Club of Ikaleland; Noble Stars Club of Ikaleland; and United African Community Organisation, among others.
The medical sector celebrated Oba Faduyile, who is the father of the incumbent President, Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), Prof. (Prince) Adedayo Faduyile, with goodwill messages from the Medical Women’s Association of Nigeria (Lagos State); NMA branches in Ondo, Enugu, Lagos; Ekiti; Rivers and Anambra states; Medical and Dental Consultants of Nigeria (MDCAN) as well as its chapter in Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja.
The event presented an opportunity to demonstrate prowess and affinity for traditional Ikale Biripo music as the eminent personalities, amid hilarious applause from other guests, danced hysterically to the cheerful and captivating tunes presented by Chief Omotola Emaye-led musical band, defying the length of time granted by the masters of ceremony, including Henry Oloja and Oluwole Akinbo, for the dancing interlude. The guests were also entertained by popular Ademola Suzi juju band.
One of the highlights of the event was presentation of certificates to those honoured with traditional titles.
Among them are Benson Akindeju (Asiwaju of Ikaleland), Chairman, SUBEB, Ondo State, Princess Oladunni Odu (Erelu of Ikaleland), Tony Meduoye (Bashorun of Ikaleland); Layi Akinbode (Aare Bobasaye of Ikaleland), Mrs. Bolanle Akinbode (Yeye Aare Bobaseye of Ikaleland), Mrs. Olayemi Lillian Solanke (Otun Erelu of Ikaleland) and Gbenga Olatunjoye (Asojuoba of Ikaleland).
Oba Faduyile is the chairman, Ikale Obas, and chairman, Chieftaincy Committee, Okitipupa Local Government. He was chairman, Ondo State Council of Chiefs, from 2000 to 2003.