The Giesi Ruling House of Ile-Ife will soon produce a list of suitable candidates among whom the next paramount ruler of the ancient town of Ife will be chosen.
The traditional rulers that made up of the 16 kingmakers of Ile Ife unanimously issued a statement on Monday to put to rest rumours and seeming controversies that have trailed the selection of the new king, after the demise of Oba Okunnade Sijuade in a London hospital two months ago.
The statement followed the recent meeting where the Osun State Government and Ile-Ife kingmakers resolved that the Giesi Ruling House will produced the next Ooni of Ife.
At a press conference held at the palace on Monday, the Council Chairman, Folorunso Omisakin said the traditional rulers that made up of the kingmakers by Ife are united in the decision:
“We the Traditional Rulers, in line with Ife traditional rules and customs unanimously affirmed that the 1980 Ife Chieftaincy Declaration is the one in existence now and we affirm that by Section 19 subsection a (3) that it is the turn of Giesi Ruling House to present a candidates/candidates for the vacant stool of Ooni of Ife Chieftaincy and that the other three ruling houses, Osinkola, Ogboru and Lafogido should wait for their turn.’’
By the agreement, the state government will formerly write Giesi Ruling House to present the suitable candidates among whom one will be presented to the kingmakers which will in turn present it to the local government that will then take it to the state government for final selection and approval.
Chief Omisakin explained that the resolution which favoured Giesi was predicated on the 1979/1980 Ife Chieftaincy Declaration which spelt out rotation status among the four ruling houses.
He said the purpose of the meeting was to inform the world of the exact ruling house that is entitled to the respected thrown, based on the 1980 Declaration which has since overthrown the previous Declarations.
“I assure Nigerians that the product of our decision shall be a perfect fusion of the tradition and the law. 1980 Declaration which provides for Giesi Ruling House ensures that no ruling house is marginalised. Osinkola, Ogboru and Lafogido have had their turn and there is no controversy of any sort regarding the turn of Giesi.”
Chief Omisakin who said the Giesi family has sent no name yet to the Council, contrary to media reports, appealed to all stakeholders to maintain peace while the process that will span about forty days lasts.
‘’We hereby enjoin the members of the four Ruling Houses, the town’s people, all religious bodies, men and women in Ife environs to please maintain absolute peace. By doing this, the kingmakers would be able to select the best candidate for the vacant stool of Ooni of Ife.’’
Dr Taiwo Olaiya, the Executive Secretary, Ife Central Local Government, within which Ife town is domiciled, assured Nigerians that the kingmakers will do the right thing, stressing that both the tradition and the law would be followed in the process.
“We will write immediately to the Giesi family to intimate them of the procedures and whoever would be chosen, according to the Osun State laws must, “have relative ability, character and the popular support of the people.”
By Adeyinka Aremu