TRIBUTE TO OLOLU PAUL DARE OLORUNFEMI: AN UNCOMMON KABBA LEGEND

 BY DR GBENGA OLORUNFEMI

It was ten fast years on October 202006,that the late Ololu Paul Dare Olorunfemi left this side of the world to eternity. We have been making arrangements to celebrate and honour his life and times this year but we had to shelve the program so as not to be seen as being insensitive to some other events in Kabba community.  However, my younger brother, BankoleOlorunfemi, a former President of Kabba Students Union remembered him on his facebook page and the comments and showers of glowing eulogies on the uncommon Kabba Chief made me feel obligated to document a fraction of the tribute for posterity sake and to further honour him. Some of the comments on Bankole’sfacebook account go thus ‘RIP our legend, our hero’. ‘oh so it is ten years already that you left us, you were the traditionally appointed Obaro of Kabba’ “Tribute to a chivalrous leader…’ and many more that space may not allow.

Ololu Paul Dare Olorunfemi, the then Obayoka of Kabba was born on September 4 1945 into the IrasiRoyal Clanof OdoluRuling Group in Owe-Kabba community. He attended St Andrew Primary School, EgbedaKabba from 1952 to 1955 and then St Andrews Primary School, Kabba from 1955 to 1957 where he obtained the First School Leaving Certificate. All through his primary education, he was among the top 3 in class. His prodigious brilliance is still being alluded to by his classmates even now when I go home and see them. He then proceeded to the foremost secondary school in northern Nigeria, the “Lion of the North”, Kabba Provincial Secondary School (now Abdul Aziz Atta Memorial College, Okene), the same college that I later attended because of my father’s strong attachment to his alma matter. He was a sportsman and he performed brilliantly well till he graduated from the school in 1963.

Never deterred by several impediments of his humble background, Ololu Paul Olorunfemi strived for excellence against all odds and proceeded to the Kaduna Polytechnic, Kaduna from 1964 to 1966, where he obtained the Ordinary National Diploma (OND) in Building Engineering with Upper Division. Upon graduation from Kaduna Polytechnic, he proceeded to the Yaba College of Technology for his Higher National Diploma (HND) in Civil Engineering in 1967 and concluded the program with Upper Division in 1969.

He started his career as a pupil engineer with the Kano Metropolitan Board in 1969.  He was part of the team that surveyed the vast expanse of land tagged ‘No Man’s Land’ in record time. He had an award to his credit for his tenacity and dedication to duty.

In 1975, he left Kano for KwaraState Investment Corporation (KIC) which later metamorphosed into Kwara State Housing Corporation where he also served as the Secretary of the State Ministerial Tenders Board at the time Adewole Housing Estate was constructed. With stint of hard work and focus, he meteorically rose to the pinnacle of his career to become a Chief Technical Officer (GL14) in 1981 only after seven years of service at the age of 37. He later left Civil Service at that level when destiny beckoned on him to serve his people.

Ololu Paul Dare Olorunfemi devoted his entire life to the service of mankind in general and Kabba people in particular. He used his intellect, skill, and resources for the upliftment of his people. His several decades of benevolence knew no bounds.

While in the Civil Service in Kano, and later in Ilorin, he helped several Kabba sons and daughters to get jobs, contracts etc. He empowered some others by giving them money to start up business ventures. He designed and computed the bill of quantities of building projects of several Kabbasons and daughters without any fee. After retiring from service and while in Kabba, he convinced several sons and daughters of Kabba to erect buildings for several purposes in their motherland and facilitated, supervised and provided valuable advice towards such projects. He was always ready to freely give his skills to all without reservations or for any valuable considerations. He was very accommodating, friendly and would easily warm himself to people’s heart irrespective of age, status and leanings. His house in Ilorin and Kabba were easily accessible to Kabba people. Just find your way to his house and you are sure of shelter and feeding.

As a young man, he lost his father at a tender age of 32 in 1977. He organized a befitting burial ceremony for his father with fun fare. The prestigious juju maestro of the time, I.K Dairo entertained guests all through the night at Kabba. He was also in the forefront of the struggle that brought electricity to Kabba. In 1978, in recognition of his service to his place of birth, the then Obaro of Kabba, His Royal Majesty, Oba Daniel O. Aka (Gbadebo I) (JP, OON), conferred a two-title chieftaincy, the Obayoka of Kabba- on him. Since then, he participated actively in the Kabba Traditional Council.

In December 1978, he was elected the General Secretary of the Kabba Development Union (KDU) the umbrella of socio-cultural and development body of Kabba community, Ilorin branch and in December 1979, he became the National President of the union. During his tenure as the National President, several developmental projects were achieved among which were the establishment of two secondary schools at Otu-Egunbe and Okedayo(where Government Science Secondary School, Okedayo is currently located.) to complement the mission schools; maintenance of Health Care Centers at Otu-Egunbe and Egbeda; and upgrading of the Obaro of Kabba stool to a first class status. During this period also, he went on a month-long nationwide tour of Nigeria in company of Mr. S. O. Ibihunwa visiting the nooks and crannies where Kabba indigene resided to sensitize, inform and to re-engineer them towards developmental projects in their homelands. His efforts actually bore fruits, culminating in the various developmental projects that were embarked upon at that time. Ololu Paul Dare Olorunfemi was one of the major proponents and promoters of Kogi State, spending his personal earnings and travelling and crisscrossing the then Kwara and Benue States to convince people of like minds to push for the creation of Kogi State. He was always saying that development reaches you faster when you are closer to your state capital. I pray that the dividends of the state creation will reach our people more in the nearest future amen.

His tenure, stewardship and developmental achievements were easily remembered when he died and even now. Prince Sam O. Olobatoke who was the National President of  KDU in 2006 when OloluOlorunfemi died alluded to this when he wrote thus in the book of tribute:

“We are celebrating the life of a great icon of all time – Ololu Paul Dare Olorunfem”. Addingthat:

That Ololu Paul Dare Olorunfemi was born great is not in doubt. As a result of being born great, he was elected as the National President of KDU, the umbrella Union for all other organizations in Owe Kabba. During his tenure, he achieved a lot that no other past National President has ever achieved. His tenure, it was, when the Health Clinic, Otu, and the Maternity Centre, Egbeda, Kabba were established. For his love for education, he went ahead during his tenure to establish the only Community High School, Okedayo now Kakun – a feat no President of the Union either past or present has ever achieved. He did not only establish it but nurtured it to the very stage of maturity before the then Kwara State Government took over the school.

The general awareness he had brought to bear on the youths of Owe Kabba and the various lectures he gave on the customs and tradition of our people will never be forgotten. His pragmatic approach to teething issues bothering on the development of the clans as well as to the general well-being of Owe Kabba will also go down the memory lane and the archives of the community.

Ololu Dare Olorunfemi loved education and youth development. He devoted most of his energy and resources in achieving this. He would always quote the saying “If you want a reward of a year, plant crops.  If you want a reward of ten years, plant trees. If you want a reward of the next generation, invest in educating the youth”. He also paid school fees, and SSC examination fees for several indigent students. He counseled and guided young people on career opportunities and subject combinations and helped several school leavers to gain admission into tertiary institutions. Little wonder today that he has several foster children that crossed his path all in pursuit of higher education and in obtaining good jobs for some.

Ololu Paul Dare Olorunfemi also stopped at nothing in making the young appreciate their culture and origin. He loved history and he wanted everybody- both old and young- to embrace and know the history of their origin at their fingertips. He hated falsehood with passion and would always strive to educate and pass on Owe history both orally and in written form to the next generation and posterity.

All the foregoing and many more endeared him to the Kabba Students Union when the Union, devoted most part of the 1982 AMITY (the official magazine of K.S.U) to him. Some years later, the 1986 Kabba Students Union Executive Council also produced exercise books in his honour.

He was a social mobilizer. He exudes charisma at all times. He was versatile and could engage just anybody in intellectual discussions. He was a fast learner too. His brilliance usually comes to fore when he gives speeches at public occasions and when offering suggestions on thorny issues affecting the community.

Following the demise of the late Obaro of Kabba, His Royal Majesty, Oba Daniel O. Aka from IdogbaRoyal Clan of KabbaRuling Group, who reigned from 1957 to  January 1 1982, the Obarostool became vacant. On May 29, 1982 Chief Paul Dare Olorunfemi, the then Obayoka of Kabba from IrasiRoyal Clan of the OdoluRuling Group was unanimously selected as the Obaro of Kabba out of eight contestants by the Kabba kingmakers in accordance with the applicable Kabba Chieftaincy Declaration and as supported by the overwhelming majority of Kabba People. He became the Obaro-elect at 38years of age. Kabba people and the traditional institutions started paying him homage and accorded him the full complement of the Obaro status as he also presided over the NkoTraditional Council. He continued to discharge his traditional duties as the Obaro-elect while Kabba people awaited the Governor’s approval. But instead of the approval, the throne was usurped in 1985when the then Military Administrator of Kwara State, Wing Commander Mohammed Umaru hurriedly appointed a non-contestant who in fact never held any Owe chieftaincy title as required under native law and custom and codified under the then existing 1961 Chieftaincy Declaration .

Kabba people and the kingmakers cried foul to the bastardization of their culture and they engaged the then legal luminary, Chief Fredrick RotimiAlade Williams SAN, AlhajiAlarape Salman now SAN, Dr. S.O. Mosugu SAN, Mr. OluwadareAguda (now retired High Court Judge and a consultant in United Kingdom) and J. O. Ijaodola Esq. to contest the unlawful imposition of Obaro. After both parties had exchanged pleadings and after the court had delivered some preliminary rulings, the same Military Administrator, promulgated Edict No. 6 of 1986 ostensibly to fill a vacancy he had earlier purported to fill in October 1985. He also promulgated the said Edict which several people had described as obnoxious, for purporting to retroactively oust the jurisdiction of the court. The then Chief Judge, Hon. Justice Timothy Oyeyipo declined further jurisdiction in the face of that Edict No. 6 of 1986, which was   described in the open court by Mr. Ijaodola as a barbaric exercise of legislative power.

In spite of this usurpation clothed with a legislative ad hominem and also a usurpation of judicial powers which attracted criticisms from within and outside the Kabba Community, the Obaro elect, Ololu Paul Dare Olorunfemi took the issues in its stride and was doing his best to safeguard his people and her cultural heritage strictly within the puffins of the rule of law. He was well loved by the populace. He was a master planner, strategist, patriot, statesman and a peace-loving leader. He tried to uplift Kabba Kingdom in all its ramifications. In a bid to use the military might to the fullest and to totally subjugate and obfuscate the wishes of Kabba people, another edict was promulgated to make it criminal for anybody to be accorded traditional recognition by his people in any community where Government had purportedly appointed a ruler. Since it was not easy to suppress the wishes and aspirations of the people for too long, the imposition by Wing Commander Mohammed Umaru was greeted with spontaneous violent demonstrations in quick succession. The two Judicial Panels of Enquiry that were set up at various times to investigate those occurrences both came to a logical conclusion that the remote cause of the disturbance was the serious error in appointing and imposing an unpopular and unqualified person who did not even contest as the Obaro. However, Government did not have the courage to do the needful but attempted to palliate and pacify OloluOlorunfemi and the Kabba community by affirming that the OdoluRuling Group where the people’s choice hails from will have the throne immediately the demise of the military appointee. The current Chief Justice of Kogi State, Honorable Justice Nasir Ajanah was the Chairman of the last panel in 1994. Indeed, in all these, Kabba people had their own full dose of arbitrariness of the military interregnum in the affairs of this country through this singular action of the then military administrator.

All the Commissions of Enquiry into the Obaro institution in Kabba from time immemorial have come to the conclusion that the three ruling groups of Katu, Kabba and Odolu have equal rights to the Obaro, Obadofin and Obajemu three titled chieftaincy stools. The Makama Commission of Enquiry of 1957 ascertained that the three ruling groups made up of thirteen clans have equal right to the Obarostool which led to the enactment of the 1961Kabba Chieftaincy Declaration by the then northern regional government, similar chieftaincy declarations were also made at that time in respect of important chieftaincy stools in northern Nigeria including that of Attah of Igala, Ohinoyi of Ibirra, Olubunu of Bunu and Olujumu of Ijumu.

Another commission of enquiry headed byHonorable JusticeAremuOlagunju in 1982 stated that there was no doubt that the Obarostool was not exclusive to any royal clan but confirmed that all the three ruling groups  of Katu, Kabba and Odoluhad occupiedthe Obaro throne at one time or the other in the history of Owe land.

The commissions of enquiry headed by Hon JusticeGbadeyan and that of Hon Justice Nasir Ajanah in 1989 and 1994 respectively both found that the rotation amongst the three ruling houses of Kabba ,Odolu and Katu, be maintained.

Ololu Dare Olorunfemi was a man of peace who believed in the rule of law .In the heat of the upheaval, he was still able to have sound presence of mind to publish educational resource materials. Thus, in 1986, he published and launched two books on the same day at Ben Thomas Hotel, Kabba on December 9, 1989 in an occasion that attracted many national human rights activists and renowned authors from all over Nigeria.These book wereABC for Beginners, a book for pre-nursery and nursery classes and Questions and Answers on Integrated Science for Junior Secondary School, a book to aid students preparing for junior secondary school examinations.

Though when he died, his 13 children were all very young, but with the support of his family and Kabba community, they forged ahead in life having had a solid foundation from theirfather.

He used to say that there is nothing wrong in brothers being in two different political parties without severing their relationship.  He considered the wishes and the interest of the community above all other considerations in his counseling on politicians. I remember how numerous politicians would visit our house nocturnally to sell their manifesto and seek his blessing since they knew who held the ace in the community and who could win votes for them. Several people and politicians rode on the fact that they supported Ololu and the communal struggle to become successful politicians and traditional rulers.

He loved his people so much and he was always concerned about the welfare of all the people.About two weeks after undergoing a surgery at the University College Hospital, Ibadan,on his sick bed, he was still concerned about his people, and still making calls to drop wise counsel to those that needed it. He took all the issues in his strides until he breathed his last.At the week-long final burial rights of this well-loved Kabba legend in February 2007, Kabba stood still to honour their natural leader who they knew meant well for them at all times.  It was indeed not possible for you to be trained by this legend and not naturally inculcate the spirit of selfless service.

In the same vein, my uncle Dr.John FunshoOlorunfemi, the Obamofin of Kabba, one of the foremost traditional titled holders and a barrister at law, who is the only brother of my father virtually became the Kabba community legal adviser. My father was always recommending anybody that needed legal opinion to call him and in so doing, my uncle too rendered that service gladly without any legal fee.

Chief Obamofin is a natural bridge builder between the young and old within the Kabba community and its environs.  Although not given to mundane publicity, Chief Obamofin has also been utilizing his vast Legal and academic interest and skill in Arbitration, Human right, Constitutional and legal drafting and criminal matters to assist in promoting and administering peace, unity and justice in Kabba community and its environ.Obamofin’s ingenious legal contributions have resolved several juridical tangles which almost shook the foundations and corporate existence of Kabba community. This perfectly justifies the conferment of his title Obamofin on him. Obamofin means “the king that knows the law”.

Like my father, Dr John FunshoOlorunfemi is a great motivator and philanthropist. He has assisted several Kabba indigenes to be gainfully employed and he has been contributing to the educational development of many Kabba indigenes and non-indigenes. Several Kabba indigenes gained admission to tertiary institutions through him.  Chief Obamofin’s house is always a beehive of students’ activities as he keeps hosting several students and he subsequently assisted them to settle into Campus life.  He also paid the school fees of several indigent students. Most of those students that he assisted are now captains of industries and academics. Chief Obamofin also participated selflessly in the socio-economic and cultural activities of Kabba people.

My uncle, Dr John FunshoOlorunfemi, who is the only brother of OloluOlorunfemi, holds a Doctor of Philosophy(Ph.D)Degree in law from the “Lions Den”-University of Nigeria. Dr. Olorunfemi, a university don and a selfless community leader is a man of many parts. ChiefObamofin has served his community in numerous capacities.  He was the Vice President of the Kabba Students Union in 1979/80 and he has also served as the National Legal Adviser of Kabba Development Union for 13 years between 2000/2013 and National Legal Adviser of Kabba Club ‘12, a socio-cultural organization that also represents the true aspiration of majority of Kabba people aimed at fostering justice, fairness, love, unity and peace in Kabba. He was virtually travelling from his place of work, on weekly basis, to attend crucial meetings in Kabba on how to move the community forward.Obamofin provided patriotic legal and other advice and service to Kabba community aimed at ensuring order and sanity in the socio-cultural and religious activities of his Community and its environs free of charge. He was also in the forefront for the actualization of a University to be established in Kabba.

As a great mobiliser and a veritable rallying point for the young and old, Dr. John Olorunfemi doubles as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Kabba Leadership Development Initiative (a pressure group of professionals that have been organizing programmes to advance the socio-political re-engineering of the Kabba people). He is also the Registrar of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion of Kabba). He has an abiding faith in the sovereignty of the Almighty God. Thus, Chief John Olorunfemi has dedicated the whole of his adult life to the service of God, his maker, his community and mankind.

My father appeared to me in a dream in March 2016 and said that I should not forget the unfinished project and I wondered what he meant. I did not take the statement to heart until the Obaro of Kabba stool was recently declared vacant less than 2 months after the dream. Just as my father was a man of history who bestrode this earth with sense of purpose and history, I know that Kabba is currently at a cross road as history beckons again on the community to enthrone justice, equity and fairness.

As fate will have it, Dr. John Olorunfemi is currentlyamong the five contestants for the Obaro of Kabba stool, the same position that was denied my father years back. It is believed that no other better memorial or honor would be done to the memory and legacy of OloluOlorunfemi than for his younger brother who had also served the community in multiple capacities to be crowned the Obaro of Kabba. It is when this is done that, equity, justice and fairness can then be said to have been done to the memory and legacy of late Ololu Paul Dare Olorunfemi and all those who believed in what he lived and died for.

It is also very interesting to discover that the key stakeholders are also great men of history whom history would remain kind to. The Obajemu of Oweland who is an Ololu, (three titled Oba), (a third in rank in the traditional hierarchy and a Kabba kingmaker), His Royal Highness, Oba Michael Ibinaiye was always called Obalola (king of tomorrow), even before he ascended the throne of Obajemu. Obajemu is a committed courageous young man who fought gallantly for the enthronement of peace, justice, fairness and equity in the community. Some extraneous powers wanted to deny him the exalted throne of Obajemu but my father together with other prominent Owe sons and daughters including our Obamofin stood their ground and after 3 years of intense struggle and social mobilization, equity, fairness and justice were enthroned. Thus, Oba Ibinaiye’s community service to the Kabba people was eventually rewarded.. Since His Royal Highness, Oba Ibinaiye ascended the throne of his forebears in September, 2006, he has never looked back in providing the necessary leadership and Kabba people have no regrets whatsoever in their choice, support and loyalty to his reign.

Another man of uncommon history who has made his mark already on the footprint of the history of Kabba kingdom is the current Obadofin of Oweland and current reagent of Kabba, (an Ololu and second in rank to the Obaro),  His Royal Highness, Oba MichaelOladele Yusuf. Oba Yusuf as a young man during the hey days of the struggle for the enthronement of unity, peace, love,  justice, fairness and equity in Kabba community was one of the dependable young patriots of  yester years. He was initially traditionally appointed the Obani of Oweland which was the fourth in rank and a kingmaker by the then Kingmakers of Kabba in December 12,1997, but he was eventually denied the position and the case was rested at the Supreme Court. Everybody in the community believed he was robbed and were not happy but the ways of God are not our ways. When the position of a higher office, the Obadofin of Oweland, the second in rank and reagent became vacant, Chief Michael Yusuf again contested and he was eventually crowned the Obadofinof Oweland in October 2013 after a succession tussle that was orchestrated by the same forces that denied him the Obaniship. But our people fought fiercely for justice and equity. Thus, His Royal Highness Oba Michael Yusuf’s ascendancy was an act of God and his ascendancy also represents fairness, equity and justice to all Kabba sons and daughters and a reward for his selfless service to the community.

There is no gainsaying that our amiable Kogi State Governor, His Excellency AlhajiYahaya Bello who is the approving authority of the appointment of a new Obaro is also a man of history and destiny. We are all living witnesses to how he ascended the high office through divine providence. Thus, we are very hopeful and prayerful that these great men of history and honour would make history by finally enthroning equity and justice to complete the cycle of fairness in contemporary history of Kabba townby appointing and approving Dr.JohnFunshoOlorunfemi as the Obaro of Kabba, a position that was unjustly denied his senior brother.

Providence have also orchestrated it among the OdoluRuling Group from where the new Obaro is supposed to emerge. Thus, appointing my uncle Obamofin from IrasiRoyal Clan can only be seen by the OdoluRuling Group as the mark of fairness. OdoluRuling Group has four royal clans vis a vizOgbagi, Ijemu, Irasi and Teko. The present Obajemu of Oweland, His Royal Highness, Oba Michael Ibinaiye hails from Ogbagi royal clan. Based on an understanding among the royal clans inOdolu Ruling Group, all the contestants to the Obajemu stool were from Ogbagi royal clan. They were Chief Oluhaiyero, Chief Alemayo, and the incumbent. Also, the current Oba of Odolu, the ruler and head of OdoluRuling Group and a third class traditional ruler hails from Ijemu royal clan. And inthe spirit of the understanding existing among the clans in Odolu Ruling Group, all the contestants for Oba of Odolu were limited to Ijemu royal clan. The contestants included, Chief Pius Olupehin, Chief Raphael Ige, Chief Ade Oyomi, Chief  Karimu Isa, Alhaji Chief Obayele, Chief Olorunmebun and the incumbent, Oba Odolu, Oba Joseph Osatuyi. The only non-Ijemu Chief that signified interest, Chief Oloruntoba was asked to step down for the contestants from Ijemu based on the understanding that Irasi royal clan where the newObarois expected to emerge have been denied the position in 1985 through military fiat. Thebrave and sagacious royalty of our recent past,   His Royal Highness, Oba TolufasheAlegbemi, the last Obadofin from OdoluRuling Group hails from Teko royal clan. I must pause to exude the courage and uncommon bravery of His Royal Highness, Oba Alegbemi. I can vividly recollect the tall frame of our late monarch and reagent at that time (Oba TolufasheAlegbemi). He was in sync with the people’s aspiration at all times and history will remain kind to him. From the above analysis, there is no doubt  providence was at play to ensure that all the other three clans (Ogbagi, Ijemu, Teko) to the exclusion of my ruling house, the Irasi Royal clan had occupied and isstill occupying very prominent positions that have been vacant for the OdoluRuling Group of Clans.

Thus, providence has paved the way for equity, justice and fair play to be naturally done by allowing another son of OdoluBalaja from IrasiRoyal Clan, Chief John FunshoOlorunfemi, Obamofin of Kabba. This will surely be the greatest tribute to my late father and all Kabbasons and daughters who have made sacrifices for the enthronement of peace, justice, equity and fairness in Kabba community.

Such a gesture of appointing and approving Chief John FunshoOlorunfemi, the Obamofin of Kabba as the Obaro of Kabba would also reward all the years of selfless service of Obamofin to his community. Obamofin is very popular today among the Kabba people because of his years of selfless service to the community. His activities have endeared him to the people.

As if providence was beckoning on him and preparing him for such a time like this, Obamofin specializes in Criminal law and Alternative Dispute Resolution Mechanisms (ADR). All these legal skills are very much neededfor a contemporary Obaro of our time. Traditional rulers are expected to assist Government in maintaining law and order and to help track criminals. Chief Obamofin is a consummate lawyer, a teacher, author and editor of numerous peer reviewed journals that distinguish him as a great thinker and academic of repute. All his wealth of experience in law and community service would surely be an invaluable asset to the community and the state Government if he is given the mandate to lead his people.

In1992, he also assisted the KabbaStudents Union to review its constitution to meet up with contemporary times. He was at various occasions a member and leader of delegation of Kabba community to sensitize the Government on the yearnings and aspirations ofKabbapeople. He is always ready to contribute his quota towards enthroning fairness and justice in the Community.  He is also a grassroots mobiliser and has encouraged youths to play politics without bitterness. Chief Obamofin also has a long standing convivial relationship and influence beyond the shores ofKabba land. He had perfect relationship with community leaders and opinion leaders from other districts in Okun land and across the borders of other communities in Kogi State most of whom were his classmates and school mates. He is very loyal to his friends. Little wonder that in August 2010 when he organized a reception for meand my wife under the chairmanship of Dr Stephen Olorunfemi who was then the Honourable Commissioner for Finance in KogiState after our wedding ceremony in Lagos, all the crème of the society were there to grace the occasion including the national presidents of development associations of neighbouring districts.. At this juncture of Kabba history, a God fearing man and community leader holds the ace as rallying point for astronomical growth and development of the town. As our holy book would state in proverbs Chapter 29 verse 2 thus: ‘show me a righteous ruler and I will show you a happy people…’ Also, verse 4 of the same Chapter states that “When the king is concerned with justice, the nation will be strong…….”.

I remember vividly one of the public lectures he delivered in 2005 during the celebration of ObaroOdide Day onKabba in Contemporary Timeswhen his most eloquent speech was greeted with loud ovation by the audience that filled the Kabba Town Hall to full capacity. The brilliance of his historical account of chieftaincy in Owe Kabba is of great moment to the extent that after the speech, he received the warm embrace of the people at the high table including the Late Obadofinof Owe land,His Royal Highness, Oba Patrick Owoleke and Late Chief P.M Tolufashe. His powerful presentation was so compellingly canvassed with admirable and uncommon distinction that the paper was aired on several occasions bythe Nigeria Television Authority; published in various national newspapers and it has since become a reference material for researchers.

I believe the foregoing and many more should embolden the kingmakers to select my uncle, Chief John FunshoOlorunfemi, the Obamofin of Kabba as the next Obaro of Kabba, since Obamofin is imbued with the necessary strength of character that is founded on the fear of God, fairness, justice, human right, rule of law and selfless service to the people and again his charismatic disposition and the overwhelming goodwill he enjoys will make him a good communication link between the government and the people.

 

Dr. GbengaOlorunfemi is a medical practitioner.

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