Three members of the Oyomesi (kingmakers) in Oyo town made an announcement on Monday, asserting that they have not yet chosen a candidate to occupy the vacant Alaafin stool.
It’s worth recalling that the Basorun of Oyo, High Chief Yusuf Akinade, previously mentioned in an interview that the kingmakers had concluded their selection process in October 2022. He had stated that the selected prince’s name had been forwarded to Oyo State Governor, Engr Seyi Makinde, for approval, and they were awaiting an official announcement from the state government.
However, a statement released to the press on Monday by three of the kingmakers – Iba Samu of Oyo, High Chief Lamidi Oyewale; Agbakin of Oyo, High Chief Asimiyu Atanda; and Baale Ajagba, Chief Olusegun Odurinde – contradicted Basorun’s claims. They contended that the nominee’s name sent to the government had not been accepted because the kingmakers had not adhered to due process when reaching their decision.
The statement clarified, “There are five living members of the Oyomesi, and there are two Warrant Chiefs eligible to nominate/recommend a nominee to the governor of Oyo State for appointment as the Alaafin.
“The kingmakers met only once in 2022 with the following members in attendance: Basorun, Agbakin, Samu, Akinniku, Lagunna (Oyomesi), joined by Areago Basorun and Alapo (both Warrant Chiefs unilaterally selected by Basorun without the knowledge or consent of the Oyomesi). In fact, one of the contestants wrote a letter of protest questioning the inclusion of one of the Warrant Chiefs in the kingmakers’ council.
“It was at the first meeting of this improperly constituted seven-member kingmaker group that a nominee for the office of the Alaafin was sent to the government for endorsement.
“Immediately after submitting our nomination, we received a response from the government stating that our nomination could not be accepted because we did not adhere to due process in reaching our decision. The government directed us to revisit our process and ensure compliance with the declaration,” the statement concluded.