Happy 88th Birthday Oba Sikiru Kayode Adetona, The Awujalẹ Of Ijẹbu Kingdom

It is celebration galore as the Awujalẹ of the Ijẹbu Kingdom, Ọba Sikiru Kayọde Adetọna attains the ripe age of 88 years. Oba Sikiru Adetona, a foremost traditional ruler in Ogun state in Nigeria, was born on 10 May 1934.

He was installed as the Awujalẹ of the Ijẹbu Kingdom on 2 April 1960, which makes him one of the longest reigning monarchs in Nigeria. He is a member of the House of Anikinaiya.

Ọba Sikiru Olukayọde Adetọna, Ọgbagba Agbotewole II, was born into the Royal House of Anikinaiya of Ijẹbuland in his father’s house in Imupa, Ijẹbu Ode. His father Prince Rufai Adetọna Adeleke (born c. 1902), a son of Ọba Adeleke, Ọgbagba Agbotewole I (c. 1825–1906), the Awujalẹ of Ijẹbuland from 1895 to 1906. His mother was Ajibabi Ọnaṣhile, who was from the town of Ijẹbu Igbo. The founder of the Royal House of Anikinaiya (or Anikilaya) was his great-grandfather Oba Anikilaya, Figbajoye Agboogunsa I, (c. 1775–1854) who reigned from 1821 to 1854, and who himself was a son of Ọba Gbelegbuwa. As a member of the Royal House of Anikinaiya, his paternal family claimed descent from Olu-Iwa, the semi-legendary first Awujalẹ and Ọbanta, another founder of the Ijẹbu kingdom.

Prince Adetọna attended various Baptist Schools, Ereko, Ijẹbu-Ode; Ogbere United Primary School, Oke Agbo, Ijẹbu-Igbo; and Ansar-Ud-Deen School, Ijebu-Ode between 1943 and 1950. For his secondary education, he attended Olu-Iwa (now Adeola Odutọla) College, Ijebu-Ode from 1951 to 1956. Between 1957 and 1958 he took up an appointment with the then Audit Department of the Western Region,Ibadan.

The prince resigned his appointment in 1958 to pursue further studies in accountancy in the United Kingdom, which was the colonial ruler of Nigeria at the time.

By a letter dated January 4, 1960, referenced CB. 4 1/333, the Permanent Secretary in the Western Region Ministry of Local Government conveyed to the Local Government Adviser in Ijẹbu Ode approval of the Western Region Governor in Council, the appointment of Prince Sikiru Kayode Adetona as king, and his confirmation as the new Awujale of Ijebuland with effect from that date (January 4, 1960). It became the lot of Ijẹbu notables like the late Ọgbẹni-Ọja, Chief (Dr.) Timothy Adeọla Odutọla, Bọbasuwa I, Chief Emmanuel Okusanya Okunọwọ (MBE, KFNM); and Aṣiwaju, Chief Samuel Ọlatubọsun Ṣhonibare to arrange for the home-coming of the King-elect.

On January 18, 1960, the Head of the Ijẹbu Ode Regency Council, the Ọgbeni-Ọja, Chief Timothy Adeọla Odutọla formally presented the new traditional ruler to the whole world. This presentation, which was a novelty, signalled the commencement of the installation ceremonies of the king-elect. It was indeed, a new dawn in the annals of Ijẹbu people. The king-elect thereafter proceeded to undergo the traditional seclusion at the Odo for three months.

king-elect. It was indeed, a new dawn in the annals of Ijẹbu people. The king-elect thereafter proceeded to undergo the traditional seclusion at the Odo for three months.

Oba Sikiru Kayọde Adetọna, who had earlier been nominated along with five others by the ODIS was unanimously selected by the kingmakers in conformity with Section 11 of the Chiefs Law of 1957 applicable in Western Region. The then Governor signed the Instrument of Office approving Prince Sikiru Kayọde Adetọna as Awujalẹ of Ijẹbuland. The formal coronation took place on Saturday, April 2, 1960.

 

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