Ooni of Ife: Tinubu’s Candidate, Dipo Eludoyin Chickens Out, Scampers To China
The age-long aspiration, nursed by Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to install his close friend and business associate, Prince Dipo Eludoyin, as the next Ooni of Ife, has been deflated.
The ELITES learnt that Tinubu’s candidate, Eludoyin, has bluntly refused to be drawn into the racy race for the Ooni’s throne. When the quiet and self-effacing billionaire was buffeted by pressure from all angles by his friends, he left Nigeria.
Findings made by The ELITES, revealed that Eludoyin is currently seeking a temporary respite in China, until the tension, occasioned by the contest for the Ooni of Ife abates.
It would be recalled that Eludoyin, a bedroom-sharing confidant of Asiwaju Tinubu, was mentioned as a likely successor to Oba Okunade Sijuwade Olubuse II, who ascended the loft last month.
Prince Dipo Eludoyin, a holder of the Member of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, MFR, is the Chairman of Paragon Group. His company owns the popular Ikeja Mall. However, most of his business ventures are also domiciled in China, which is like his second country. So influential is he that he created and funded the platform, on which Akinwunmi Ambode’s aspiration to become governor of Lagos State was actualised.
Sources disclosed that Eludoyin become disenchanted with the notion of contesting for the Ooni’s stool, when it dawned on him that his multi-faceted, multi-billion dollar business empire could crumble, since he hasn’t prepared anyone to run it for him. Besides, Eludoyin was said to have nursed the reservation that the Ile-Ife kingmakers and most prominent Ife indigenes might not be enthusiastic about supporting his intention, for reasons, which are not unconnected with his ties with Tinubu.
It is gathered that Eludoyin had confided in some of his friends that he would return to Nigeria until a new Ooni of Ife is selected.
The ELITES gathered that Eludoyin’s refusal to contest for the Ooni of Ife’s throne, really rattled Asiwaju Tinubu’s camp, since they had reposed so much confidence in his candidature. However, sources disclosed that the camp is currently propping up another candidate, Adebode Adefioye, to contest for the throne.
Adefioye, also known as Ade, Esq., serves as Chief Executive Officer of IBK Services Limited. He is a Non-Executive Director of Wema Bank Plc and a Director of Lafarge Africa.