Why I installed Ajeigbe as Aare Bobaselu – Olofa of Offa

The Olofa of Offa, Oba Mufutau Mohammed Gbadamosi Oloyede, speaks with OYEDAPO OYEWOLE, on why he conferred the title of Aare Bobaselu of Offa on Otunba Abdulatif Adekunle Ajeigbe. Excerpts:

Kabiyesi, what is the role of Aare Bobaselu?

“Aare” is somebody who must work very closely with me. “Aare” title is very key within the palace of Offa kingdom. The holder is to assist me in carrying out major policy reforms, and at the same time do all other things that would promote the culture and tradition of the Offa people on my behalf. If there are grievances in the town, the titleholder will go there, talk to them and liaise with me. He will represent me at some occasions I am unable to attend. He will always be with me, work hand in hand, put heads together on what we are to do. For example, if we need a school, how do we get the land? We’ll work together to get land. If some families are having problems with land, I send him to settle or bring the case to me. He has a lot of roles to play.

Why did you think Otunba Kunle Ajeigbe qualifies for this position?

Otunba Kunle Ajeigbe is somebody I have known for close to 20 years. When I ascended the throne in the year 2010, Ajeigbe and two others put together some Islamic scholars from Lagos to settle disputes with the Offa Imams so that I can have a peaceful and successful reign. He spent his money and also made his hotel available for this. Not only that, anywhere he hears anything about Offa or the palace, he always shows concern. Before I announced him as Aare, a lot of people would go to him in order to have access to me. There was a time he came with some professors and doctors as regards Summit University, Offa. Despite the fact that they are all close associates of mine, they still went through Ajeigbe in order to see me.

Otunba Abdulatif Adekunle Ajeigbe

He has been doing a lot in promoting the interest of the Offa community, that’s why I decided that I was going to confer him with the title of ‘Aare Bobaselu of Offa’, so that he can do more for us in Offa.

Would you recall if other people have made requests for this title before?

The chieftaincy title in Offa is not like other communities as we don’t beg for it. When people make a request, we only give if we find such an individual worthy, otherwise, we say no. However, I cannot say whether some people have an interest in the title or not.

With a woman also conferred with the title of Bobaselu, what is the difference between the two titles?

Offa is a very big community. The two personalities, Alhaji Adekunle Ajeigbe, the Aare Bobaselu and Chief (Mrs.) Wosilat McCarthy, who holds the Bobaselu title and some other chiefs may not be enough for the task at hand. There may be instances we may need both man and woman. On their part, they will put heads together to advise me. Sometimes, we may have between five and ten occasions and each of them will represent me.

Can you tell us some of the things he has done for the development of the Offa community?

Otunba Ajeigbe has been playing active roles in decisions that affect the socio-economic development of the Offa community. Not only that, he has contributed immensely to offer lasting solutions to recurring Erinle/Offa land tussle. He is a man of peace and is encouraging peaceful co-existence among the people.

Kabiyesi, your advice for Aare Ajeigbe on his new assignment and other sons and daughters of Offa town?

My advice for him is to continue to build bridges of unity that concern Offa people, participate in key roles in developmental efforts, and ensure the promotion of Offa culture. He should work more on the unity and progress of Offa.

For other sons and daughters of Offa, I want them to continue to embrace peace and always contribute to the progress and development of Offa bearing in mind that there is no place like home wherever they may be.

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