The Awujale of Ijebu land, Oba Sikiru Adetona Ogbagba II on Tuesday expressed optimism that Ijebu State will be created in his life time.
Giving the history of Ijebu land, Oba Sikiru Adetona said that it was one of the provinces of the old Western Region. “I’m optimistic that Ijebu State will be created in my life time.”
“Ijebu is a viable land and would achieve it,” he said during the question and answer session with journalists to commemorate his 80th birthday celebration in Ijebu Ode, Ogun State, southwest Nigeria.
Activities for the birthday kicked off with a press conference organised by Ijebu Renaissance Group. Chief Adetokunbo Fassy-Yusuff, spokesman for the group, revealed that the six-day event will witness many activities including a special thanksgiving service at the Cathedral of Church of Saviour at Ijebu Ode on Sunday 4 May.
On Tuesday, 6 May there will be a colloqulum on the Ijebu mission and the presentation of a book title ‘Coffee: Table Book & Awujale’. On 7 May there will be the final edition of the Oba Adetona Football competition at the Otunba Dipo Dina International Stadium, Ijebu Ode.
On 8 May, there will be a grand reception at Oba Sikiru Adetona Golden Jubilee Centre. The grand finale will hold on 10 May with a grand launch of the book at the Marquee, Otunba Dipo Dina International Stadium.
Fassy-Yusuff described Oba Adetona as the longest reigning monarch in the country.
According to him, “the 80th birthday anniversary of this living legend and charismatic monarch provides us with an exceptional opportunity to construct the person Oba Sikiru Kayode Adetona who was born as Prince Sikiru Olukayode Adetona to the ‘Anikilaya Ogbagba, royal family of Ijebu Ode. His father was Prince Rufai Adetona of Imupa area of Ijebu Ode.”
He also described Awujale as a nationalist, who is devotedly committed to the Nigerian State. “He is indeed a patriot, he has built bridges across River Niger and River Benue. He admonishes his people to be thoroughbred.
He, however, defined himself. No wonder the Ijebu people have not only comport themselves wherever they are but it is on record that neither inter nor intra ethnic clash nor religious insurgency has been recorded in Ijebu land since he ascended the throne in 1960.”