OPINION: The Ibadan Obaship And Its Uniqueness By Asoju Odo, Alawode Rahmon



As an indigene of the ancient city of Ibadan, hailing from the Atipe-Looyin Compound and Badeku Village in Ona Ara Local Government, I feel compelled to shed light on the uniqueness of the chieftaincy and Obaship tradition of Ibadanland, amidst calls for a review.

Every system has its merits and demerits, and the Ibadan Obaship system is no exception. One notable aspect of this system is the advanced age at which kings typically ascend the throne, often resulting in relatively short reigns. While some criticize this aspect, I believe there are compelling reasons why this system is indeed beautiful:

1. Predictability of succession: The Ibadan Obaship system operates on two lines—the Ọ̀tún (civil line) and the Balógun (military line). This structured succession ensures clarity and continuity, as the next king is already known based on the rotation between the lines.

2. Rigorous grooming process: Each Olúbàdàn undergoes a thorough grooming process steeped in tradition and heritage. From the Mọ́gàjí stage to ascending the throne, individuals are immersed in the customs and values of Ibadanland, fostering a deep understanding and appreciation of their role.

3. Inclusive eligibility: Unlike some other traditional systems, the Ibadan Obaship is open to all true indigenes of Ibadan, regardless of lineage. This inclusivity ensures that the throne is accessible to a wide range of individuals, promoting diversity and representation.

4. Stability and accountability: The advanced age and extensive grooming process of Olúbàdàns contribute to a sense of stability and wisdom in leadership. This reduces the likelihood of misbehavior or desecration of the throne, as incumbents are aware of their limited time and the importance of upholding tradition.

5. Rotation of leadership: The rotational nature of the Obaship ensures that leadership opportunities are distributed among different individuals and compounds, fostering a sense of equity and participation in governance.

While it is true that Olúbàdàns do not reign for long compared to some other Yoruba kingdoms, the benefits of the Ibadan Obaship system far outweigh this drawback. It is a system rooted in tradition, inclusivity, and stability, contributing to the rich cultural heritage and development of Ibadanland.

Asoju Odo Alawode Rahmon Akintunde
Atipe-Looyin Compound || Badeku Village || Ibadan
Tel: 07036078155
Email: alawoderahmon@gmail.com

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