The Deji and Paramount Ruler of Akure Kingdom, Oba Aladetoyinbo Ogunlade Aladelusi, Odundun II had paid an historic visit to the 20th Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar and the Sultanate Council during his 3 days working visit to Sokoto State.
Oba Aladetoyinbo and his entourage was received at the Sultan Abubakar III International Airport, Sokoto by two senior council members district Head, Sarikin Shuni and Sarikin Gabas Durbaw on behalf of the Sultan.
The visit which was aimed atfostering unity and to rekindle the friendship which exists between the Sultanate and the Akure community. Also, it was an attempt by the Deji of Akure to build bridge across the nation towards nation building and seeking solution to the challenges posed by insecurity.
The Deji of Akure and his entourage later visited the Sultan in his palace. The Deji was received with the blowing of the traditional horns and clarinets to announce the arrival of the monarch. There were series of traditional dancers and praise singers in their large numbers who were on ground to receive the Deji and his team. There were series of traditional acrobatic display to entertain the long awaited August visitor who equally waved and cheered the jubilant crowd at the Sultan’s Palace.
The Sultan then led his Guests to the inner chamber of his Palace for a heart to heart discussion and to formally welcome them.
Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar while welcoming the Deji of Akure described the visit as historic and timely considering the current situation in the country, ranging from kidnapping, banditry, terrorism among others which is seriously threatening the unity and peaceful coexistence of the country. I am delighted that the Deji is here at this time for this historic visit which further attests to our unrelenting commitment to a more virile and united Nigeria, more especially at this critical time of our national life, the Sultan stated.
Some people wanted us to be permanent enemies by pitching us against each other in the name of religion and ethnicity. Our diversity was supposed to be a blessing to us and not the other way round. But what you now see that the Politicians are using this to divide us and we ignorantly allow them to continually use this to their own advantage. I strongly believe that these terrorists, bandits and those involved in crimes are hoodlums, rascals and criminals irrespective of their religion and tribe. A criminal is a criminal whether from the South or the North. A criminal will always be a criminal, we need not trivialize the issue or give it an ethnic coloration, Sultan submitted.
We can collectively overcome the challenges of these wanton destruction of life and properties. There is no argument that there is senseless killings and destruction in the land. However, I know that this is surmountable, all we need to do is to come back and collectively fight these miscreants. We will expose them and will not allow them to hide under religion and tribe. Let me inform you that the man that handles the installation and repair of appliances in my palace including my bedroom is a Yoruba man. That is how much I believe in a united Nigeria devoid of sentiments.
Oba Aladetoyinbo said “Let me use this occasion to re-emphasize the need for a State Police as one of the key measures to stem the rising tide of insecurity in the nation. I have consistently canvassed for this as it is applicable in developed nations of the world. We must, as a matter of necessity, decentralize our security architecture if we must triumph in the fight against crime. I am of the opinion that an attempt to decentralize the security system in the nation will further boost community policing. Your Eminence will recall that this was the practice in the precolonial era”.
The Monarch then canvassed for a constitutional role for Traditional Rulers in the Country. We are well positioned to end insecurity if given the constitutional backing. Our roles must not be restrained to a mere advisory role but be actively involved in the fight.
The Sultan later led the Deji and the entourage to a town hall meeting at the Main Hall of the Sultan’s Palace. Present at the meeting were the Sultanate Council, the District Heads and the Yoruba Community in Sokoto.
The meeting deliberated on security issues and peaceful coexistence among all tribes in the nation. They equally discuss the solutions to the myriads of challenges facing the nation and other national discourse.
The Deji later presented Kolanut and a talking drum to officially invite the Sultan to the Ulefunta festival 2019. The Sultan is expected to deliver the 2019 Ulefunta lecture which comes up in Akure by September this year.
Oba Aladetoyinbo thereafter, proceeded to the Governor’s office for a courtesy visit on the Governor, Rt. Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal. The Deji was personally received by the Governor, the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Saidu Usman, the Chief of staff, Alhaji Muktar Umar Magori and members of the State Executive council.
The Governor thanked the Monarch for choosing to visit Sokoto at this time. He described Oba Aladetoyinbo as a courageous Monarch who is a detribalized Nigerian all sense.
Your Majesty, I have read much about your activities and activeness, you are one of the respected Monarch in the South western Nigeria and indeed in the entire country. I urge all other traditional leaders to learn from your exemplary leadership and approach to national issues with a nationalistic and patriotic mind.
I know that there have been religious tolerance and ethnic harmony in your kingdom, we hear and get report of how you had continually bring your subject together for the good of the community and the state. I want to assure you that we will continue to build on this good relationship for a greater mutual benefits between Sokoto State and the good people of Akure Land.
In his own remarks, Oba Aladetoyinbo thanked the Governor for receiving his entourage and for the hospitality of the Sokoto people. We have established a cordial relationship, we will continue to nurture it for the good of our people and the development of the nation. I have heard about your good work and with what I have seen, I am convinced that you have performed excellently well. I am here to seek for a concerted and coordinated efforts between the traditional rulers that will end insecurity in the nation. We want to build a united, just and equitable Nigeria that we will all be proud to live in. the Deji then informed the Governor of his intention to honor him with a Chieftaincy title as a mark of strengthening the relationship between Akure and the good people of sokoto
The Monarch then presented a talking drum to the Governor to officially invite the Governor to the Ulefunta 2019. The Governor who accepted to attend the festival played the drum to the admiration of his guest as a sign of acceptance.
The Governor recanted his long standing relationship with Akure people. I am a good friend of your late son, Barrister Deji Falae, we worked together and use to sleep in the house of Chief Falae. I know how hospitable and accommodating the people of Akure are. I can attest to this, they are exceptional, brilliant and accommodating. Your visit will be a major testament to Nigerians that we stand to benefit more if we collectively tackle issues bedeviling us a nation.
During the 3 days working visit, Oba Aladetoyinbo also paid a thank you visit to the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah. The fiery cleric was in Akure to deliver the 2018 Ulefunta Special Lecture. The Monarch was received by Bishop Kukah, top clerics and staff of the Diocese. Oba Aladetoyinbo was full of praise of the Cleric for raising the tempo of the Ulefunta festival and bringing into the international space through his thought provoking lecture. I want to tell you that you have done us proud. You brought the global attention to Akure through that lecture which is still fresh in our memory and the entire Nigerians. Indeed, you broke the ice and you did excellently well. I want to appeal to you to always come back again and again. We will be glad to receive you anytime you so desire.
In his response, Bishop Kukah appreciated the Monarch and the Akure people for finding him worthy to deliver the lecture. It was a huge honour for me to have been considered to deliver that lecture.
Your Majesty, I have made it a point of duty and solemn vow to always talk when it is expedient no matter whose ox is gored. To defend the poor and represent the down trodden.
The climax of the event was a gala night organized for the Deji and his entourage by the State Government at the Presidential lodge. The gala night was attended by the Governor and the State Excos, the Sultan and the Sultanate council, district heads and other distinguished sons and daughters of Sokoto State.
Responding on behalf of the Akure monarch, Falae, himself an Olu (of Ilu Abo) under the Deji-led Akure Kingdom, thanked the Sultan and Governor Tambuwal for the honour.
Chief Falae, a former Nigerian Presidential Candidate and Minister of Finance, declared that his kidnap and hostage in the bush for four days in the past was not by any ethnic or religious group but by criminals. He then called for holistic and concerted effort to solving the problem of insecurity, therefore, in the country.
Troupes of Sokoto State Cultural Group, Yoruba cultural group and Hausa artist, Oruma, among others performed to the admiration and cheering impression of the gathering
The Deji was accompanied by His Olori; Funmilayo Aladetoyinbo, the SSG, Ondo State, Hon. Ifedayo Abegunde, the Chief Imam of Akure Kingdom, Sheikh (Dr.) AbdulAkeem Yayi Akorede, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Public Utilities, Engr. Tunji Light Ariyomo, former member, Ondo State House of Assembly, Hon. Kemisola Adesanya, the Edemo of Akure Kingdom, High Chief Afolabi Fayehun, the Chief Imam of Akure Kingdom, the Chairman of Ulfunta 2019, Prince Adebisi Adeniyi, Secretary, Ulefunta 2019, Mr. Ayo Ajayi, the Chairman of the Lecture Committee, Prof. Abiodun Ayodele, the President of Ooye Development Initiative,