Major national dailies in Nigeria, today, January 20 focused their reports on the death of the Olubadan, of Ibadanland, Oba Samuel Odulana Odugade I.
Daily Sun reports that Oba Samuel Odulana Odugade I, the Olubadan of Ibadanland, yesterday night, January 19, passed on at the age of 102. The late monarch, who was the 40th Olubadan of Ibadanland ascended the throne of his forefathers on August 17, 2007.
The traditional ruler who had been sick for some time as a result of old age reportedly died between 2.30pm and 3.00pm and his corpse was immediately taken to a mortuary. The late Olubadan was born on April 14, 1914 and in 1964, he became Minister of State for Labour. He joined the royal chieftaincy lineage as Mogaji in 1972. He became the Olubadan at the age of 93 in 2007.
The late Olubadan’s eldest son, Prof. Femi Lana, when contacted for confirmation on his father’s death, said: “No comment.”
A source within the palace disclosed that the state governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, would today be officially informed about the monarch’s death, adding that: “The governor will formally announce to sons and daughters of the city, the demise of the paramount ruler of Ibadanland.”
The late monarch was last seen in public function on January 1, 2016, when he promoted nine Ibadan chiefs in Olubadan line.
The promoted chiefs include Chief Saliu Adetunji, who is now the Olubadan-in-waiting; Otun Olubadan, Senator Lekan Balogun; and Osi Olubadan, Senator Rashidi Ladoja, who is a former governor of the state.
Chief Adetunji, who is from the Military Line (Balogun) has been hinted to emerge the next Olubadan. The late Oba Odulana is from the Civil Line (Otun).
The Nation in a contrary report states that the Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Samuel Odulana Odugade 1, died at the age of 101, noting that he would have turned 102 in April this year. Reports say the traditional ruler lost consciousness before he eventually died. It also reported that he mounted the throne in 2007 as the 39th Olubadan.
Oba Odulana was the 17th Olubadan since the title was elevated from Baale Ibadan to the Olubadan in 1930. The first traditional ruler to bear the new title was Oba Okunola Abass who reigned between 1930 and 1946.
The late Olubadan hailed from the Ladunni Compound in Oja Igbo within the Ibadan metropolis. He was born at Igbo-Elerin, Lagelu local government area on April 14, 1914, to Pa Odulana Ayinla. In the 1959 pre-independence federal elections, he contested to represent his constituency as a member of the House of Representatives, but his political career ended with Nigeria’s first military coup on January 15, 1966 after which he went into philanthropy and community mobilisation.
It was gathered that the next in line to the throne is the Balogun of Ibadan, High Chief Saliu A.O. Adetunji.
When the personal assistant to the late monarch, Chief Isiaka Akinpelu, was contacted for confirmation, he denied that the monarch had died. He said it was a rumour, adding that: “Oba Odulana ate yesterday.”
The Guardian reported that the late Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Samuel Odulana Odugade 1, lived a fulfilled life. The prominent Yoruba monarch whose life spanned a century celebrated his centenary birthday in April 2014. His remains have since been deposited at the University College Hospital (UCH).
Oba Odulana, who ascended the throne in 2007 after the death of Oba Yunusa Ogundipe, Arapasowu 1, would be remembered as a disciplinarian and a progressive kabiyesi. He was a teacher, soldier, member of House of Representatives, Parliamentary Secretary to the late Premier of the Western Region, Sir Tafawa Balewa in the first republic and he climbed about 22 steps before he became the Olubadan of Ibadan.
The late Oba is reputed as the oldest person to be crowned Olubadan in recent history. He once had a running battle with the now late strongman of Ibadan politics, Chief Lamidi Adedibu, who was Ekarun Olubadan, a member of the Olubadan-in-council. The battle emanated from the monarch’s directive to Ibadan high chiefs constituting the Olubadan-in-council to shun partisan politics, telling them to choose between their traditional offices and partisan politics. The Oba threatened to sanction any erring chief in line with laid down Ibadan traditional and conventional regulations. This led to an open confrontation between the monarch and the late Adedibu.
Meanwhile, The Punch has reported that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has condemned the handcuffing of its National Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisah Metuh, yesterday, January 19 at a Federal High Court in Abuja.
The party described it as a “brazen display of authoritarianism” by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led All Progressives Congress (APC) to have handcuffed Metuh even when the court was yet to hear his case.
PDP said: “The act clearly show an extra-judicial, top political witch-hunt policy of the APC, which is carefully designed to humiliate, embarrass and portray the party leaders as common criminals and set the stage to cow and decimate the opposition and perceived foes of the government.”
However, the Federal High Court granted bail to the sum of N400m on the N400m alleged fraud charges brought against Metuh by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). The bail requirements state that the national publicity secretary should provide two sureties in the sum of N200m each, as well as have properties in the elite Maitama District of Abuja.
Vanguard reports that the Central Bank of Nigeria Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, yesterday, January 19, told the Senate that the apex bank will not go back on restrictions placed on Bureaux de Change (BDCs) operators.
The governor insisted that they are the ones waging a relentless war against the Naira, adding that activities of operators of BDCs are major cause of the dwindling value of the Naira since they embark on rent seeking speculation of the Naira.
Emefiele also disclosed to the Senators that some 2,837 BDC operators were leading the speculations against the Naira in the parallel market, adding that since stoppage of allocations to BDCs, they have been sourcing their dollars from oil companies and other foreign exchange earners.
He, however, assured the Senators and Nigerians not worry about the current fall in the value of the Naira, saying the currency would soon stabilize. Recall that the CBN had earlier accused BDCs of buying foreign exchange from the apex bank at N197 and selling at N270. Some of the operators of BDCs were also alleged to be in an unholy alliance with politicians to defraud the nation of its foreign exchange.
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