Olubadan steps out, clears doubts about fitness as July 12 coronation date nears

The Olubadan-designate, Oba Owolabi Olakulehin has again appeared in public in what seems a calculated attempt to clear all doubts about the level of physical fitness of the octogenarian to ascend the throne.

Four weeks ago, Governor Seyi Makinde had stirred the hornet’s nest when he said the new Olubadan would be crowned when he is medically fit.

Governor Makinde made the statement at the Obafemi Awolowo Stadium, Oke Ado, Ibadan, the venue of the official burial ceremony in honour of the late Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Mohood Olalekan Balogun, who passed away on March 14, 2024.

However, the statement by the governor did not go down well with many indigenes of the ancient town even as the health status of Oba Olakulehin has been the subject of speculation from the moment it became evident he was the next Olubadan.

But a recent video obtained by WESTERN POST showed Oba Olakulehin stepping out in the company of eminent indigenes of Ibadanland ahead of his coronation slated for Friday, July 12.

In the video footage, Oba Olakulehin was seen visiting notable members of the Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes (CCII), including High Chief Kola Daisi, the former governor of Oyo State, Chief Rashidi Adewolu Ladoja, who is also the Otun Olubadan and High Chief Eddy Oyewole among others.

Oba Olakulehin’s public appearance in recent times may have put paid to concerns about the health status of the 89-year-old incoming king thus, erasing doubts about his capacity to ascend the throne.

Speaking on the issue, the Otun Olubadan, High Chief Rashidi Ladoja said, “To me, the new Olubadan is fit. He had been on the journey of becoming the Olubadan since 1983. The new Olubadan is fit, but only old.”

Also, Oba Olakulehin’s recent rapprochement with the former governor of Oyo State and the Otun Olubadan, High Chief Rashidi Ladoja, who instituted a court action against the Olubadan-in-Council, indicates that peace may have returned to the Olubadan Chieftaincy, noted for its peaceful transition of power from one monarch to another.

According to the Maye Olubadan, High Chief Lekan Alabi, Ibadan is ready to crown a new monarch on Friday, July 12 at the ancient Mapo Hall.

According to tradition, the Oluwo of Ibadan will crown the new Olubadan at lle Ose-Meji. He will from there go to Mapo Hall where the governor will present him with the staff and instrument of office as the 43rd Olubadan.

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