Alaafin Stool: How Lukman Gbadegesin Became Last Man Standing—Adeyemi Adefemiwa

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It is generally believed that the death of Alaafin Lamidi Adeyemi ended an era. His reign witnessed so many advances and modernizations in the kingdom. Alaafin Adeyemi was indeed a top-notch leader with influence across the world. The importance of Alaafin stool to Yoruba land and Africa at large wouldn’t deserve a vacuum, not to mention an interregnum.

The death of Oba Adeyemi was a call to duty of Oyo Mesi, the most powerful nobleman in imperial Oyo.

According to history and protocols, no emperor, or Alaafin of Oyo, was capable of being enthroned in the Oyo without the prior consent of and performance of rituals by these seven titleholders, the ‘Oyo Mesi’. They were a ruler’s principal advisors and sacred officiants and also served a variety of judicial and administrative functions in his realm.

The seven Oyo Mesi consist of: Bashorun ( prime minister ), Agbaakin ( high priest of Oranmiyan ), Alapini ( high priest of Egungun ), Samu ( sacrificial minister ),
Alapini ( high priest of Egungun ), Laguna ( roving ambassador ), Akiniku ( chief of defense staff ), and lastly Ashipa ( mayor of the capital).

Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III who was the 45th Alaafin, died Friday, 22 April 2022, but it took the Oyo Mesi who were historically and culturally saddled with the responsibility of getting the ancient Oyo town a new King several months to hit the spot.

The process to install new Alaafin began around July 2022, with 119 acclaimed Princes, applying to fill the vacant stool.
Unfortunately for the Oyos who are expecting a new King, Ashipa, one of the seven Kingmakers died, even before the commencement of the process.

It took the six remaining Kingmakers no time to write the state government, through the ministry of local government about the demise of Ashipa, High Chief Amuda Olorunkosebi,
the mayor of the capital of Oyo, and request of a Warrant chief to fill the vacant space in Oyomesi in other to fulfill the seven image in Oyomesi to carry-out the custom duty sourcing and installing a new King in Oyo. Thou, names were suggested for the Oyo state government in which one was selected and ratified to join the other Oyomesi to carry out the task.

According to the information gathered, the screening session for applicants was said to be along the line of their educational qualification, schools attended, age, vision, aim, and objectives for Oyo town, if they emerge. In addition, the Oyomesi also drilled the prospective Alaafin to have a rich sense of history, education, experiences, and healthy, and have a good command of both English and Yoruba.

Not too long when the process began, Alapini, High Chief Abdul-Rasheed Shehu,
the high priest of Egungun also died. Thou was also replaced by a warrant chief, who was suggested among six others to the state government but sourcing for a new Kind for Oyo ancient city by the five Oyomesi and the two choosing warrant chiefs was very complicated.

it was learned that, to have a smooth process with adhered to laid down modalities, the Oyomesi consulted the state government for chieftaincy declaration papers, that serve as a guide for the selection of Oyo kings.

With the information gathered, the Oyo state government, through the Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, assisted the Oyomesi in providing all references for the due process of choosing a new King.

After they concluded their interview sessions with aspirants for the Alaafin stool in September last year which was also witnessed by the state government, ably represented by the Chairperson of the Atiba local government, Hon. Mrs. Mojisola Kafilat Olakojo and some officials of the Council, the Kingmakers, through
acting Regent and the Basorun of Oyo, High Chief Yussuf Akinade Ayoola Layinka 1,
disclosed that a total of 65 contestants appeared for the exercise and 10 aspirants confirmed to be shortlisted afterward.

Among the shortlisted aspirants is Prince Lukman Adelodun Gbadegesin. Having gone through the expected due process, monitored by the state government and later on, with the consultation of Ifa, then arrived at one aspirant with the unanimous consent of the Oyomesi.

The unverified statement coming from Oyo town, flying on the internet for the past week
revealed that the due process gone through by the Oyomesi, supervised by the Oyo state government has produced Prince Lukman Adelodun Gbadegesin, as next Alaafin of Oyo, with no single questioning from anyone of the Oyomesi. Thou, it was confirmed that a legal battle was involved.

It was learned that one of the aspirants, who were not satisfied with the process that produced Gbadegesin when to court to challenge the process, Oyomesi and Oyo state government involvement. But the high court sitting in Oyo was to have upheld the process that produced a chosen candidate for the Alaafin stool, thou, gave 21 days ultimatum for judgment appeal if there will be any but almost four months gone after the court judgment on the case against Oyomesi and the state government.

As things stand, it has been revealed that the five Oyomesi and the two warrant Chiefs selected by the Oyo state government to step in for the two demises Oyomesi, Ashipa, and Alapini have concluded the required due process and the name of the chosen candidate for the Alaafin stool had already been going to governor Makinde for ratification.

According to findings made by Heritageecho.com, or was revealed that no other Prince was chosen, but the one on speculation, Prince Lukman Adelodun Gbadegesin from the Agunloye ruling house. The Agunloye family is also known as ‘Ladigbolu’ or ‘Gbadegesin’ in some quarters.

It will be recalled that the declaration states that there are two royal houses in Oyo — Alowolodu and Agunloye. The two families are to take turns ascending the throne. The late Alaafin was from the Alowolodu royal family.

After completing the mission and final say of the Oyomesi (kingmakers), or is said the entire Oyo town is anxiously waiting for the state governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde on his pronouncement of the new King, thou also wary of last minutes of alteration and distortion that may hinder the installation of the new king as some Oyo indigene has been noticed of brewing up personal interest about the announcement which is expected to come up later this month.

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