For Abdulatif Adekunle Ajeigbe, Saturday 3rd April 2021 will forever linger in his memory. The day was another glorious moment of joy for him and his two wives, Chief (Mrs.) Fauziat Abiodun Ajeigbe and Chief (Mrs.) Taibat Kikelomo Ajeigbe, as they were conferred with the titles of Aare Bobaselu, Yeye Aare Bobaselu and Otun Yeye Aare Bobaselu of Offaland, respectively, by the Olofa of Offa, Oba Mufutau Mohammed Gbadamosi Okikiola.
The venue of the installation ceremony, the palace of Olofa, was filled to its brim as dignitaries from far and near gathered to identify with the man of the moment popularly called ‘Triple A’ by his admirers not minding the curfew imposed on the town following the lingering land tussle between it and another community, Erinle.
Dignitaries at the event included royal fathers, captains of industries, politicians, Islamic clerics, family members, friends and associates. Among them were the Alapomu of Apomu; Timi of Ede; Olujuku of Ojuku; Hajjia Alimot Lawal; the Kaduna State Commissioner for Agriculture; Chief (Mrs.) Wosilat McCarthy,; Bobaselu of Offa; Chief Imam of Offa, Sheikh Muideen Saliman Hussein and Asiwaju of Offa.
Others are Chairman, AMS Integrated Farms Limited, Asiwaju Mashood Shittu; Chief (Mrs.) Bisi Oyewo; Yeye Oriade of Ojokuland; Prof. Hussein Oyelola Oloyede from Summit University, Offa; members of Offa Metropolitan Club, Chiefs and Olofa-in-Council members; Lion (Dr.) Aanuoluwapo Esuola from Maryland, USA, among many others.
The Ojomo of Offa, High Chief Joseph Bayo Akinola, while speaking on behalf of the Olofa-in-Council, explained that the council decided to honour Ajeigbe with the Aare Bobaselu title having considered his roles and contributions to the socio-economic development of Offa kingdom as a way of appreciating and motivating him to do more.
He added that he has contributed immensely to resolving the lingering communal crisis between Erinle-Offa communities and has been consistently involved in any issues that concern the Offa community for a long time.
The Chief Imam of Offa, Sheikh Hussein Muyideen in his lecture at the ceremony, urged well-meaning individuals in society to always give back to the community as there is a reward for every good deed done by an individual both on earth and in the hereafter. He then offered a special prayer for the new Aare Bobaselu that the Offa kingdom will continue to witness accelerated development during his tenure.
The Counsel to the Olofa-in-Council, Barrister Basiru Ijaya, thereafter administered the oath of allegiance and swearing-in ceremony on the new Aare Bobaselu and his wives and equally presented them with certificates of installation.
Some of the dignitaries while speaking with Rulers’ World, lauded the qualities that Otunba Ajeigbe possessed which endeared him to them. The Rector, Federal Polytechnic, Offa, Dr. Ademola Olatunji, described him as a bridge-builder between the old and young, the poor and the rich and equally related with the less privileged.
Also speaking in the same vein, the Personal Assistant to the Olofa of Offa, Engr. Abdulfatai Kolawole Yusuf explained that his announcement as the Aare Bobaselu of Offa did not come as a surprise to him and others because of the kind of person he is. According to him, Otunba Ajeigbe loves Offa a lot and there is no way the history of the town will be written without a mention of the background of his parents.
The Bobaselu of Offa, Chief (Mrs.) Wosilat McCarthy, on her part, said the Aare Bobaselu title has been given to the right person considering his pedigree and contributions to the socio-economic development of Offa kingdom, stressing that they will be working together to advise the Olofa of Offa properly.
In her own remarks, Lion (Dr.) Aanuoluwapo Esuola from Maryland, USA, described Otunba Ajeigbe as a very humble and jovial person, praying to God to give him the necessary energy and resources to carry out the onerous task ahead of him in his new position.
Aare Ajeigbe, in his reaction, expressed deep appreciation to the 0lofa of Offa for finding him worthy for the title and other dignitaries that graced the occasion and promised to use his new position to further advance the progress and socio-economic development of not only Offa but Kwara State as a whole.
While speaking on some of the interventions he brought to the community that made him be considered for the title, he pointed to the siting of AWRAB Suites consisting of 60 rooms in Offa to provide employment opportunities for some youths. According to him, “Ordinarily, if the hotel were to be built for profit-making it probably would be in Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt or somewhere else but I felt I needed to put something back in my community where I came from. I still have other areas of intervention I am involved in. For instance, I’m a member of Offa Metropolitan Club that is doing N250 million naira accident emergency hospital fund in the general hospital, among others.”
Aare Ajeigbe however used the occasion to advise youth not to engage in any short cut or act that can ruin their future but rather start small and work hard in order to succeed in life. He equally appealed to the warring faction in Erinle/Offa over the land dispute to sheath their sword and embrace dialogue as a means of solving their grievances for peace to reign in the two communities.
After the installation ceremony, the reception was held at the prestigious AWRAB Suites located at Rabiat Ajeigbe Street, Off Ojoku Road, Offa, where guests were entertained. Highlights of the event include the launching of the Aare Abdulatif Adekunle Ajeigbe Foundation.
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