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On Olori Omoba Ijebu Title; Let KWAM 1 Breath!!!

KWAM 1

I read with so much amazement and dismay on the outrage on social media on Friday the 30th of June when King Wasiu AYINDE Marshall was bestowed with the Olori Omoba Ijebu title previously held by the late finance guru; Otunba Subomi Balogun by the Awujale of Ijebu Kingdom; Oba Sikiru Adetona.

 

While some congratulated him in excitement; some showed their displeasure while some casted aspersions on his persona on his eligibility and credibility. I read somewhere when someone compared the achievement of the erstwhile holder Otunba Subomi Balogun and that of the Fuji maestro King AYINDE Marshall and I can’t but shake my head in regret because I did a survey on those who vehemently opposed the idea and found out they are mostly Gen Z born between 1994-2005 and I wonder how much damage the removal of history from their curriculum has done to them. I thank God it was recently reintroduced by the previous administration because they know that history is an integral part of one’s life. And in an attempt of looking at the future, we make recourse to history. All humans are products of their own history.

 

The issue they raised was that Otunba Subomi, an elite billionaire, finance guru, and founder of the First City Monument Bank FCMB with degrees across top institutions in and outside Nigeria who holds the title should not have been replaced by King Wasiu AYINDE Marshall, a music performer, recording artiste and businessman. Some argued that the quality dropped and the person who should have inherited such a title should be shoulder to shoulder or even above the FCMB founder. Some argued that; people in K1’s circle hurriedly canvassed and influenced the Awujale to announce K1 not waiting for Otunba Subomi’s burial while some stated that the appointment is politically motivated because one of K1’s benefactor President Tinubu GCFR visited The Awujale a day before and that would have influenced the appointment of K1 as a replacement. On reading these, I laughed out loud at these baseless allegations knowing fully well that; these people are trying to undermine the achievements of this enigma called K1. Maybe because they don’t read or they don’t pay attention to things happening around them which might have influenced their thought that K1 is not worthy of such a highly coveted title and also to succeed the Late Balogun because of his status and charisma as a Multi-Billionaire.

 

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In clear terms, the appointment of K1 is indeed not out of place because to qualify for ascending that title, you must first have true Ijebu Royal Blood running through your veins. For K1, both from his paternal and maternal sides, he is a Prince. His father is a Prince from the Fidipote ruling house in Ijebu-Ode while his mother is a princess from Ilupeju-Ekiti where he is also a prince. On both sides, he is royalty.

 

K1 all his life has been a good ambassador of Ijebu and in all his songs, he must appraise Ijebu, his ruling house and royal lineage. He wears his Princely-hood like a badge of honour on his chest and carries it high on his sleeves with pride. If you hear him sing, you would know he is royal and regal. More reason he left his home in Lagos to build a palatial country home worth billions of NAIRA in Ijebu-Ode called ‘Ule Omo Ojushagbola’. Not only that, he is a philanthropist of high note. Anyone who cries to his abode will surely smile while leaving. He also recently opened his ‘Maiyegun Royal Resort and Ranch’; an entertainment and lifestyle business worth millions of NAIRA to ensure those who visit Ijebu have something to enjoy. From the cosy ambience, its sartorial elegance and serene environment, its home away from home. He also recruited many Ijebu sons and daughters who work there and he pays their salaries which is part of empowering those around him.

 

On the issue of his education and social strata, I don’t know how wealth is measured but following the modes of popular Forbes Magazine; your income, liquid Cash, Asset and liabilities are used to determine your net worth. As regards education; you don’t need more than a school certificate to contest elections in Nigeria so getting a university degree is a personal choice and not a MUST. However, education is never a yardstick to attain a traditional title of any magnitude in Yoruba land. What is required is capacity, native intelligence, brilliancy, drive, right attitude, dignity and a host of other virtues must be upheld. So for him to have that title, be sure he has ticked all the boxes of the aforementioned. He is Blue blood, he has the capacity, he has the experience and age, he has the personality, he has the command and he is also respected. As for his net worth, officially and unofficially, I know K1 is in a billionaire status. He gross income weekly with his music and show performance, his business investment in real estate and general contract with his company and his royalties from music sales and all worth Billions of NAIRA so money is not the problem. But of course, to have that title it’s not a must you assume the billionaire status in Yoruba land Money does not come first.

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While I was still a student in the University, Prof. Ebenezer Obey Fabiyi was conferred with a Professorship title and while it was being debated at the senate meeting, one of my lecturers told me that he raised a valid point that to become a full professor in academics, you need to have some amount of your papers published both in local and international journals. For Prof. Ebenezer Obey; who has over 50 Albums studio albums and has performed in several countries promoting the Juju genre of music for year’s also selling platinum and gold with his albums are worth such title as a professor because if he was in the academics, he would have attained the level of a full-fledged professor emeritus. That singular point sealed and won the conversation and everyone on the panel agreed instead of giving him a doctorate of music he was given the status of Professorship because of the reason stated by my lecturer. As for K1, who has globalized the Fuji Music genre with albums to his credits, taken his music performance outside the shores of Nigeria with tours celebrating his 50th years on stage as a musician, he also deserves the status of a professor of Music. He is an authority who can speak or address any local and international audience on the rudiments of African music most especially Fuji Music and can pass for a visiting lecturer in music and arts. He took the genre; redefined and shot it into global prominence waxing several albums that have been certified gold. So saying K1 is not well-read is relative; but in his craft, I am sure nobody can beat him at it. Yes, I said NOBODY. He is sure good at it and his old wine still tastes better. So that settles the issues of education. As long as he can express himself in his local dialect and can read and write in English, that’s enough for anyone to thrive. That should never be a yardstick. Moreover, he has trained children who are graduates in different fields.

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Let’s not forget, he holds the title as Maiyegun of Yoruba Land from First Class Thorne of the Alaafin of Oyo. Also, the title as Oluomo of Lagos from the Oba of Lagos. This shows he is a man who has carved a niche for himself so the honour didn’t just come today, he has worked vehemently for it and those who seem to have issues about it should have a rethink of mind and purge themself of such mentality that he is not a round peg in the round hole. Initially, I was not a fan of him but was drawn closer to him for the first time by Egbon Kunle Rasheed publisher of CityRovers Magazine which changed my perception of of him. Although, we are not close till date and he does not know me personally, I am very sure he is the perfect fit. For what an 89 years Old Awujale sees while sitting; if we all climb the highest iroko tree, we can’t see. The Awujale is Wise in his decision and the decision of the King is final Nobody upturns it or says otherwise. Like the Yoruba adage “Oro hunu Hunu Inu Elede Loun Gbe” which means “The Pig is known for grumbling inside and will never speak up”.

 

For you all doubting his capacity, you can simply make your findings and stop undermining his achievements and capacity. He is more than capable. Congratulations to the Olori Omoba of Ijebu. Oye Amori oo.

 

Oladapo Sofowora writes from Lagos.

 

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