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Oba Of Benin Spits Fire, Suspends 6 Chiefs Over Visit To Ooni Ife

Six Benin chiefs have bagged a suspension for engaging in what the ancient kingdom termed “sacrilegious conduct” against Benin custom and history.

A statement by the Benin Traditional Council (BTC) said their suspension followed their visit to the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, last week.

Not only did the statement accuse them of “falsely” claiming to be emissaries of the Oba of Benin, it also said they rendered inaccurate accounts of the connection between the Benin Royal Dynasty and the Ooni title of Ife.

Ife and Edo or Benin have always engaged in an age-long contest for superiority among the children of the progenitor, Oduduwa.

The statement said that the suspended officials’ offence was contained in video clips making the rounds on social media.

The visiting chiefs, inter alia, had said in Ife that the Edo people migrated from Ife.

Signed by the Iyase (Prime Minister) of Benin Kingdom, Chief Sam Ugbe, the statement read: “The attention of the Benin Traditional Council (BTC) has been drawn to video clips circulating on social media in which a group of self-serving traditional functionaries from Benin engaged themselves in a sacrilegious show of shame and falsehood against the Benin Custom.

”In the said clip, the individuals who have been identified as Johnbull Igbinosun, Iduhonre (Ihogbe), S.E. Aigbiremwen, Efesieoghoba (Ogbelaka) and two other Ogbelaka functionaries identified as Ogbeide Osagie and Osamudiame Edo were in the presence of the Ooni of Ife, falsely claiming to be emissaries of the Omo N’Oba N’ Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, His Royal Majesty Oba Ewuare Il, Oba of Benin. These individuals not only declared themselves subjects of the Ooni, but also rendered inaccurate and disjointed account of the connection between the Benin Royal Dynasty and the Ooni-ship of Ife.

”While the BTC does not wish to be drawn to restating the well-known connection between the two thrones of the Oba of Benin and the Ooni of Ife, the general public is urged to disregard the inaccurate accounts rendered by the ill-bred individuals named above.

“For the avoidance of any doubt whatsoever, the BTC advise the general public to avail themselves of the official account of the connection between the two ancient monarchies as contained in the authoritative book titled “I Remain, Sir, Your Obedient Servant” authored by His Royal Majesty, Oba Erediauwa, Oba of Benin (1979 — 2016), published by Spectrum Books/Safari Books, 2004 at pages 205-212.

“The BTC considers the conduct of these functionaries as inappropriate, sacrilegious and calculated to ridicule traditional history, and to bring disrepute to Benin custom.

“Consequently, on the authority of the Omo N’Oba N’Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, His Royal Majesty Oba Ewuare Il, Oba of Benin the Prescribed Authority over Benin Custom, the BTC hereby announce the suspension of the individuals mentioned above from their role as Benin traditional functionaries.

”The general public is advised to refrain from having anything to do with them as traditional functionaries in the Benin kingdom throughout their suspension”.

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