OONIRISA REDEFINING ROLE OF TRADITIONAL LEADERS IN 21st DEMOCRATIC ESTABLISHMENT
By; Omooba Damilare Oloyede
He became the 51st Ooni of Ife in December 2015, thus attaining the throne of his forefathers as the Arole Oduduwa, a prime spiritual and traditional stool that has made him traditionally the numero uno in any thing that has to do with the Yoruba race. His Imperial Majesty, Ooni Babatunde Enitan Adeyeye Akande Ogunwusi, Ojaja 2 also co-chairs the National Tradition Council of Nigeria, NTCN with the revered Sultan of Sokoto, so his role as a monarch is not mean.
In the last 5 years, Ooni Ogunwusi has redefined how our monarchs should be seen, respected and regarded. A man of little words, but his few words are always filled with wisdom and ingenuity. Coming from a private sector with rich experience as an expert in real estate, property development & housing/hospitality management, Ogunwusi sure passes for the best to lead the Yoruba “traditionally”.
Ile Ife, his primary abode today prides that a new lease of life has been witnessed as cultural revamping & development, business support and development, youth empowerment & women empowerment, as well as sound talent discovery and development alongside great philanthropic gestures are a few of what the reign of Ooni Ogunwusi has brought to Ile Ife and it’s environs.
His voice on national issues are not just loud, but always well channeled. He doesn’t just talk for talking sake, he is a dutiful father to all and sundry. I think this side of him is why he enjoys the respect of political juggernauts across political divides, President Muhammadu Buhari gives Ooni prime respect in the committee of Obas.
Two things Ojaja 2 like the monarch is fondly called, had done in recent times anchor on his response and reactions against the ravaging pandemic, corona virus codenamed Covid-19. Oonirisa has shown deep sense of responsibility by not only shutting his palace for thorough fumigation, but went ahead to assert that the vaccine for the novel virus is here in Yoruba land if and only if the governments and researchers can look inward. I think with the news coming in from Madagascar, Ooni seems to be right, hope our leaders in government will heed to his call.
Madagascar President, Andry Rajoelina has recommended an organic concoction to cure the infected patients. On his Twitter page, President Rajoelina asked people to believe in the country’s ability.
“All trials and tests have been conducted and its effectiveness has been provided in reducing and elimination of symptoms from COVID-19 patients in Madagascar,” Africanews a multilingual news media service quoted the president as saying.
Sad, that the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha who chairs the Presidential TaskForce on Covid-19 is even contemplating Nigeria getting this herbal tea from Madagascar.
The Oonirisa also took his leadership to another level to inventing locally made fumigators that works effectively with the drones, this invention was supported by FST Drones Services Ltd, a technological innovation firm owned by Mr. Larinde Williams. As a dutiful father, Oonirisa at the unveiling of the noble innovation, wishes to support the 36 states with the locally made fumigators, and ever since he has used the fumigators to disinfect and fumigateasy Ile Ife and its environs. Also, at least 2 of the fumigators have been personally donated to Osun State Government, Oyo State Government, Lagos State Government and as at today, Ogun State Government as well.
This is leadership beyond arm chair criticism, and we the Yorubas aren’t taking this for granted.
All the governors of States aforementioned, sincerely appreciate the effort coming from a monarch.
The star boy of the combat against covid-19 and governor of Lagos State while hosting the Oonirisa at his Marina home, thanked the monarch with commendation. Hear him;
“Thank you your majesty for using your office and institution as a strong enabler to be able to communicate and pass on this strong message to our citizens. I want to commend you, for using your office as an institution to let our people know that what we are going through is real, it is not something that anybody has conjured, but it is something we can come together and solve collectively.
“We are all your subjects and It is good that you are leading this conversation today. You are the first that would able to tell our people that COVID19 is real, you have shown we can also look inward and take up a local solution, and you have taken it upon yourself to not just sit back and criticize, but to give back and encourage our local industry and economy, to be very creative and see what kind of local solutions you can bring about.” Sanwoolu said.
In the words of Oyo state governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde, “As his subjects, we are glad to receive Kabiyesi the Ooni here at the government house today. We are happy with the fumigators he donated to us, because they will assist us in the fight against COVID-19.
“Kabiyesi came from an enlightened and business background. So, he understands how the economy works and the multiplier effect of things like this. So, I am not surprised at all.” Makinde said.
Just like his innovation of the locally made fumigators had created job, saved us of foreign exchange and made use of our educational research exploits, it is high time the Nigerian government look inward to find lasting, local and effective herbal cure to the raging Covid-19.
Oloyede, writes via firstname.lastname@example.org