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Ibadan Chieftaincy feud: Olubadan suspends masquerade dance

 
The Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Akanmu Adetunji on Sunday declared that there will be no Egungun (masquerade) dance for any of the Ibadan High Chiefs during this year’s annual Egungun (masquerade) festival billed to commence today (Monday).


The monarch made this known in a statement issued on his behalf by Adeola Oloko, his Personal Assistant / Director of Media and Public Affairs, a copy of which was mailed to DAILY POST in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital.

Oloko in the statement, however, explained that the decision to suspend the masquerade dance was in the interest of the public.

The statement said, “The Olubadan after a 2-hour security meeting with stakeholders at his Popoyemoja palace the Olubadan of Ibadan land, Oba Saliu Akanmu Adetunji, Aje Ogungunniso 1stated that the decision to suspend the masquerade dance this year is in the overall public interest”.

Oba Adetunji in the statement recalled with nostalgia that, since the time of the late Oba Gbadamosi Adebimpe in 1976, masquerades used to pay homage to selected High Chiefs in their family compounds with the permission of the Olubadan of Ibadanland.

But he said, this year, such thing will not happen due to the unfavorable security situation in the ancient city.

Though, no other reasons was given in the statement, but our correspondent learn that the last minute suspension of masquerade dance for the High Chiefs might not be unconnected with security reason arising from the controversial chieftaincy review that confers kingship without domain on the High Chiefs.

The monarch said, “As the chief custodian of our culture and tradition, I also owed it a duty to work in tandem with the law enforcement agents not to turn the celebration of our custom and tradition into a theatre of war”.

“In attendance at the meeting are ACP A. O Abimbola who represented Oyo Police Commissioner; ACP Dan Miller, CIID, Iyaganku; Mrs. B. T Agboola who represented the State Director of SSS and five Divisional Police Officers of Mokola, Yemetu, Mapo, Idi Aro and Agugu. All the leaders of masquerades association in Ibadan land to include the Alagbaa, Baale Labala and others are also present at the meeting”.

Oba Adetunji while commending security operatives for smooth Oke’Badan festival last March urged them to replicate the same during the Egungun festival.