We can’t stand Emir oppression anymore, Yoruba in Ilorin cry out
Yoruba people in Ilorin have rejected what they described as the oppression by the Emirate of Ilorin led by the Fulani dynasty.
The Afonja Descendants Union (ADU) of Ilorin in a statement made available to Irohinoodua said it was time the Emir lived up to the expectations of majority of the people of Ilorin.
They called on the Kwara State Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq state to grade traditional rulers in the five local government areas which make up the Ilorin Emirate Council. The current Governor’s father, the first lawyer from the North is Fulani while his mother is Yoruba from Lagos State.
The statement was signed by the President General and Secretary of ADU, Alhaji Olola Kasum, and Alhaji Hassan Amao.
“A situation whereby Yoruba monarchs, who included Oba of Jebba, Ohoro of Shao, Oluo of Oke-Oyi, Alapado of Apado, Afonja of Ilorin, Dado of Oke-so, Alajagusi of Ajagusi and Baale of Afon among others are not graded, which is against the oath of allegiance taken by the Emir of Ilorin to ensure equity and justice to all monarchs in the Emirate”, the statement said.
Referring to chapter 7, page 31 of a book, “Ilorin, the Journey so far”, written by an Historian, L. A. K. Jimoh where Abdulsalami, the first Emir of Ilorin was recognized as Emir of Yoruba by Gwandu Caliphate in 1842, the Afonja Descendants Union lamented that the Emir was not living up to expectation by denying the monarchs their constitutional rights.
“The Emir of Ilorin is enjoying the privileges for permanent first-class Emir of Yoruba and thus not advisable to deny his Yoruba subjects their constitutional rights.
“He should learn from the verdict of the past namely; 1913, 1936, 1958, 1969, 1978. He should allow peace to reign.
“The Afonja Descendants Union is appealing to the Kwara State government under inspiring Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq to rise up to the occasion to reverse the current trend where some people try to distort historical facts” the statement said.
The Emir of Ilorin was cautioned to stem the tide of distortionists and ensure peace and tranquility in the emirate and not to cause mayhem under the guise of Jihad.
The Union said Ilorin did not embrace Islam through Jihad.
It said Ilorin City is not a product of Jihad, but heritage of cooperation between prowess and genius as symbolized by Afonja and Alimi. Islam had been existing in Ilorin before the arrival of Alimi who came on the invitation of Afonja.
“Afonja as the ruler of Ilorin did not resist Alimi’s entry to spread Islam but rather facilitated it as he personally assisted him consolidate his young independence.
“Afonja appointed Alimi as his Chief Security Adviser, an assignment the Sheikh performed creditably to the glory of God as there was no recorded case of misunderstanding between the two friends during the life time of Sheikh Alimi.
“Islam already existed in Ilorin before Alimi’s arrival at the invitation of Afonja. The Islamic faithful conducted their religious affairs peacefully without any recorded case of persecution from the palace.
“It is on record that the relationship that subsisted between Mallam Solagberu, the leader of Okesuna Muslim community and Afonja was exceptionally cordial and that on the arrival of Alimi in Ilorin, Solagberu of Okesuna acted as interpreter between Alimi and Afonja, as host and guests were mutually deficient in each other’s language.
“Ilorin is a state of Harmony founded on the heritage of prowess and genius symbolized by Afonja and Alimi. Hence the cliche: Ilorin Afonja”, the statement said.