My intent in defending the helpless poor will judge me-Oluwo
The Oluwo of Iwoland, Oba (Dr.) Abdulrosheed Adewale Akanbi, has told critics to leave him to God, warning them against hasty judgement without knowledge of the matter involved.
In a press statement issued by him, the traditional ruler said most critics are ignorant of the hardship some monarchs in his domain are inflicting on their subjects.
Oba Akanbi revealed the affected monarchs had lorded themselves on their subjects, taking family land and selling with impunity and imprisoning anyone who attempted to challenge them.
He further disclosed he received complaints of how innocent family members are sent to prison because the monarchs influenced their case through their accomplice.
The Oluwo also expressed disappointment that most Nigerians hail bad leaders but vowed to continuously fight corruption in the traditional system just like president Buhari he maintained, is fighting political corruption by turning deaf ear to critics.
“I felt bad of why such should happen in Iwoland traditional council. Most disgusting is that these monarchs have employed thugs to protect illegally acquired land sold to speculators. The thugs are paid with proceeds from the land.
“Of my greatest worry is the amount they sell the land. imagine a standard acre of eight plots sold for #60,000! Many family lands with ancient interest trees such as cocoa, palm kernel tree, oranges, plantain, etc are sold and uprooted without the consent of the family owing the land. They went as far as selling a land for about six people. Many families have been rendered ineffective, many orphans had their heir(land) grabbed with no compensation.
“Many cried to my palace seeking justice. Ask them, I do invite them for mediation with their victims but refused to change. They went as far as saying land is part of their luxuries (awon fi ndola ni).
“Are they kings to alleviate or inflict hardship on their subjects?
“Before man and God, I have invited all these monarchs to my palace more than 10 times, appealed to them to protect the future of their children by halting frequent land sale. It was like my admonition was fuelling them to sell more and more.
“They care less, recruit touts to unleash mayhem on their subjects. I told them only an hopeless father believe that none of his children will grow to greatness and sell land that his children may use to build companies tomorrow. Kings shouldn’t be tyrant feeding through oppressing his subjects.
“Kings can sell his personal land at will and not hijacking/grabbing citizens property with no respect to their dignity. No, I can’t watch such. I am human and feel the pains of their victims. Anyone doing such will not be forgiven by the destiny of the affected families.
“Honestly, it is heart-burning, mind burgling and an irony of the function expected of responsible traditional rulers.
“The target of these kings are the poor with no one to stand and spend for their cases. The police in my area are tired of daily complaints.
“Critics may refuse to listen. I have forgiven those who have criticised me. But henceforth, if you still castigate me, I pray your generations will leave to fall victims of what many families have experienced from these Obas.
“God will spare you and your relatives to have a taste of such hopeless they have subjected their subjects to. They will illegally acquire your properties, and no one stands for you. Your last hope and means of survival will be illicitly taken by powerful men with no one to assist you. Those of you in diaspora castigating me for defending hopeless people will labour all your life overseas and you will fall in the hands of land grabbers. I stand to assist the innocent victims, and one of the culpable kings still stands against me and wanted to stick my eyes with his staff of office and you say I should not defend it. Haba, God will judge us accordingly.
“Any king that doesn’t have job should leave the palace and stop selling our lands for peanuts. That is why it is a bad idea to install poor people who don’t have work and business as Kings. They only see selling ancestral lands as their business. What they did to HIM Oba Asiru Olatubosun Tadese, they can and they should never try such with Telu 1. He is their nemesis.
“I have friends from diaspora who planned to come and settle at home with all they laboured for overseas and fall victims by the same land being sold to them was sold to more than five people in the case of Onigege of Igege who was a driver before being enthroned as a king.
“If all what I am fighting for is personal, God should remove the crown on my head. I have no interest in taking any land in my domain as against peddling lie but to protect the helpless people subjected to hardship by these Obas.
“Such can’t stand anymore. Those calling for my removal henceforth will meet their waterloo as done to the victims of land grabbers. It is disappointing to note that most of these critics are the children of the poor I am defending. They just buy #100 browsing data and throw abuse. I am not moved in as much as God sees me. You threw more stones to Buhari for fighting corruption killing you.
“It is only in big cities that you could succeed with land selling. They have choked their respective town through unofficial sales. Selling thousands of acres for peanut at #60,000 per acre. How much could these people generate to bless their office. Monarchs are not enthroned to be a curse but rather a blessing.
“President Buhari has fought corruption which has made all of you not to have a great life in Nigeria and has dwindled the growth of Africa to an extent and he is not perfect and I am fighting corruption in the traditional system. Today, there is an awareness such that nobody can just take government money and transfer it to his or her personal account.
But in Africa, the truth and its defenders are called bad names.
“I want to charge the government to intervene before these kings impoverish innocent people under them.
“Government should conduct thorough investigation of the numbers of land cases these kings have in the court. I am ashame the affected kings go to court almost everyday on land matters with the crown I gave to them.
“Government should visit the grassroots to know the havoc they have caused to the future generation.
“As human with working conscience, it is a complete irony of duty expected from the crown.
It is no gainsaying that many of the critics of the Oluwo of Iwo are bent on criticising his personality as a modern king rather than the intent of his actions which is probably in the interest of the people he governs and as such labelled him by calling him unprintable names in order to justify their actions.
TellAfrica shall however, bring you both sides of the story in order such that readers can make an informed opinion regarding this matter….. stay glued for more news of land grabbing vs assault claims as claimed by the Oluwo and his detractors.