The Oluwo of Iwo, Oba Abdulrosheed Adewale Akanbi, has expressed surprise and disappointment over claims by Hon. Razaq Salinsile that he was compelled by the State Government to stop his installation as Otun Oba of Iwo.
Salinsile, is the State Secretary of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Osun.
Oba Akanbi in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Alli Ibraheem, on Thursday said the claims by Hon. Salinsile are untrue and off track, noting that it was the court that stopped his installation.
He explained that honourary titles such as Otun Oba are exclusively awarded by traditional rulers without governmental consent or intervention.
The statement reads partly: “I read with surprise and disappointment the press conference addressed by Hon. Razaq Salinsile, where, therein, he faulted Oluwo as acting on government instruction to stop his installation as Otun Oba of Iwoland.
“Though it is general knowledge but should be reiterated that honourary titles as Otun Oba are awarded exclusively by kings without governmental consent. Government has no business in such title. Government can neither intervene nor influence in choosing who to honour.
“I was perturbed receiving calls and subsequently reading the news of a press conference addressed by Hon. Salinsile, saying Oluwo was compelled by the State Government to deny him the title. He further claimed three commissioners were sent to Oluwo to stop the installation.
“The above claims by Hon. Salinsile are off track. There was an interim injunction restraining Oluwo from Installing Salinsile as Otun Oba of Iwoland. In the court order, Oluwo and Salinsile were defendants where, therein, Chief Wahab Sikiru Atanda, alleged Oluwo of duplicating his title.
“Wahab Atanda was installed few months ago as Otunba of Iwoland. The immediate past Otun Oba was biological father of Hon. Razaq Salinsile. Honourary titles are not hereditary. Oluwo, with utmost respect for the judiciary, had to stop the Installation”.
Furthermore, the statement clarified that “there was no time when any of the commissioners in the State visited Oluwo on Salinsile’s chieftaincy matter. I see the workaholic machineries of the Governor beyond such pettiness.”
However, Oba Akanbi challenged Hon Salinsile to produce evidence to back his claims, saying that “If there is any contrary claim, we need the audio of where such issue was discussed.
“Also, I think all traditional and honorary title holders are installed to assist and protect the crown. Going public to discuss court matter and dragging Oluwo into it is unpatriotic of someone who wants to be bestowed an honourary title on. The earlier Honourable Salinsile knows this, the better. Any challenge should be thrown to the plaintiff. Oluwo has personally queried Otunba Wahab Atanda on why he sued him and Honourable Salinsile.
“Every honourary title is an exclusive asset of Oluwo to be bestowed on whoever deserves it. Going public to discuss Oluwo asset is questionable. A patriotic son won’t do such. Hon. Salinsile should toe the path of honour”.