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Market Leaders Caution Olubadan Against Double Standard, Say Only Alaafin Can Install Babaloja

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Oyo State Market Leaders Council and Committee on Chieftaincy and Allied Matters have expressed strong indignations over what they described as “illegal installation of one Alhaji Aderemi Jimoh, as the Babaloja-General of Oyo State by some enemies of progress”.

The remark was made today [28th of August, 2020] when the popular candidate for the post of Babaloja-General of Oyo State designate, Alhaji Chief Asiwaju Yekini Abass Oladapo [aka Y.k. Abass] led representatives of six out of eight Associations that constitute the Oyo State Market Leaders Council to the palace of the Alaafin of Oyo, to intimate him on the preparation for the forthcoming coronations of the new Babaloja-General, Iyaloja-General and Otun-Iyaloja General of Oyo State.

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According to Oladapo, “to put the record straight, no individual, group[s] or association[s] has the right to install any of the aforementioned positions aside from His Imperial Majesty, the Alaafin of Oyo, who is also the Permanent Chairman of Oyo State Council of Obas and Chiefs, Oba [Dr.] Lamidi Olayiwola, Adeyemi 111, and in collaboration with some principal traditional rulers”.

Findings revealed that Alhaji Aderemi Jimoh who was reported, in the Nigerian Tribune on page 14 of Wednesday, 28th of AUGUST, 2020 edition, to have been installed on Monday, 26th of August, 2020, as the Babaloja-General of Oyo State, at the House of Chiefs in Ibadan, Oyo State capital is neither a popular candidate nor recognized by majority of either the State Market Leaders Council, or the Committee on Chieftaincy and other related matters.

Oladapo stated that “clandestine moves by Alhaji Aderemi Jimoh who is only known as the Babaloja of Bodija, in connivance with his cohorts, was desperately meant to foment trouble and cause disharmony and violence among the peace-loving market men and women in the State.

“It is also important to note that out of eight associations that constitute the State Market Leaders Council, Alhaji Aderemi Jimoh is only being supported by two associations, while the remaining six are in full support of Alhaji Chief Asiwaju Yekini Abass Oladapo [aka Y.k. Abass] as the Babaloja-General of the State”.

It was reliably learnt that the two out of eight associations which endorsed the candidature of Alhaji Aderemi Jimoh are Oyo State Men and Women Association and Ibadan Joint Traders Association.

Oladapo pointed out that what is worrisome and disturbing is the media report that the so called installation of the new Babaloja-General of the State took place at the House of Chiefs, permanent building of the State House of Assembly.

According to him, “this development had caused suspicion, ill feelings, and acrimony among market men and women who perceive the government as a biased umpire in the State market leadership tussle. Otherwise, how can such an event of installation of an illegal Babaloja-General of the State be held at a vicinity close to the office of the Governor and the State legislature, yet Government denied any knowledge of such event. This indeed left much to be desired”.

The Babaloja-General designate however admonished the State Government “to wade into the matter and act fast, by calling Alhaji Aderemi Jimoh to order and stop him from parading himself as the new Babaloja-General of Oyo State, in order to avoid foreseeable breakdown of law and order”.

In his response, the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba [Dr.] Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi 111, who was unhappy about the development, called for calm on the part of market men and women in the State, with an assurance to find out what really transpired.

He urged them to refrain from taking laws into their hands, but to be patient, law-abiding refrain from acts that are inimical to peace and tranquility in the State.

Living up to his expectation, the Paramount Ruler picked up his mobile phone and spoke, in the presence of his visitors, to a Director in the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs to find out whether or not the Ministry was aware about the installation ceremony of Aderemi Jimoh as the Babaloja-General at the House of Chiefs in Ibadan.

The soft spoken top government official denied any knowledge of the installation of Alhaji Aderemi Jimoh by the Ministry.

The question raging on is: who were those instrumental to the installation of Alhaji Aderemi Jimoh as the Babaloja-General of Oyo State, as reported in the national daily?

An appeal has therefore gone to the Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Akanbi Adetunji not to play double standard in the matter, but to stand on the path of truth in the interest of peace and justice.

This is because before the choice of Iyaloja-General, Babaloja-General and the Otun-Iyaloja designates through popular votes, the Alaafin of Oyo widely consulted all the principal traditional rulers in the State in order to seek their consent, which was unanimously given.
Besides, the State Ministry of Trade, Investment and Cooperative had dissociated itself from the illegal and unpopular installation of one Aderemi Jimoh as the Babaloja-General of the State, saying it does not conform with the due process.

 

 

Representatives of the associations who accompanied the Babaloja-General designate to the palace include, Oyo State Canteen Workers; Oyo State Traders Men and Artisans; Oyo State Joint Traders Association; Nigerian Youth Traders Action International; Oyo State chapter; Oyo State Association of Traders in Nigeria; and the Association of Market Leaders Council of Nigeria.

 

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