Following a recently held election among those jostling to become the next Olowu of Owu, the Abore of Owu kingdom in Abeokuta, Ogun State, Chief Oluwole Ogunlolu, has said that only those selected through the divination of the oracle could become monarch in Owu kingdom and Yoruba land by extension.
The Olowu stool became vacant following the demise of Oba Adegboyega Dosunmu in December 2021 and kingmakers are poised to adopt an election to select the next Olowu instead of traditional Ifa consultation. Ogunlolu also noted that anyone selected to become the next Olowu of Owu must eat the royal last supper as part of the traditional rites preceding the coronation.
He also noted that the politicisation of the ascension to the Olowu stool which started about 40 years ago had led to the crisis in the kingdom. “Our kingmakers have jettisoned the most important aspect of our lives, which is traditional rites,” he said.
While speaking with journalists, Ogunlolu also noted that a succession process based on politics was a taboo, adding that the Olowu stool is not for devout Christian or Muslim, but for traditionalist.
“Our source is from Ile-Ife and Owu started based on Yoruba tradition. Our forebears would always consult the oracle, especially when they were selecting new king but what we now have today is succession process that is purely based on politics. How could you adopt political method in selecting oba in Yoruba land? It is a taboo.
“There is a ‘last supper’ which is like that of the biblical one eaten by Jesus and disciples, anybody chosen by the oracle as new Olowu must eat it as part of traditional rites. All efforts to circumvent that could lead to premature death of an Oba. Hence, I can only appeal to kingmakers to allow all these traditional processes to take place before crowning the new Olowu of Owu.
“In Owu kingdom any traditional ruler ascended to the throne without due process always died misteriously. It happened before and it can still happen. And that is why I’m imploring kingmakers to follow due process
“This, among critical cultural issues in Owu kingdom prompted myself, the Oluwo (chief priest), the Oloje (head of masquerades) and Oba Olufemi Ogunleye, Towulade of Akinale to have said in the media that Owu must not allow anybody who is not picked by the oracle, not ready to eat Last Supper and perform traditional rites on him to be our next Olowu. Olowu stool is not for devout Christian or Muslim, but for traditionalist and every aspiring Oba must abide by the rules,” he said.