Gani Adams Succeeds MKO Abiola as New Aare Ona Kakanfo

National Coordinator of the Odua Peoples Congress (OPC), Otunba Gani Adams

By Ademola Babalola in Ibadan

The Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, yesterday announced the National Coordinator of the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC), Chief Gani Adams, as the 16th Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland.

He succeeds the last occupant of the title, the late business mogul, Chief M. K. O. Abiola, who was the presumed winner of the annulled June 12, 1993, presidential election. Abiola died in detention in 1998, leaving the title vacant since then.

A palace source who confirmed the declaration to journalists last night, said a letter of appointment was issued to Adams during the 79th birthday celebration of Alaafin in Oyo and that other announcement and traditional rites would follow in the coming days.

Last Saturday, past and present political office holders in Oyo State and at the national level organised a lecture to mark the Alaafin’s birthday celebration held at the Atiba hall.

With the theme: ‘Alaafin’s Economic Empowerment, Youth Development and the Quest for Greater Oyo,’ the politicians, including a serving senator, Monsurat Sunmonu;  House of Representatives member, Akeem Adeyemi; the Chairman, Pilgrims Welfare Board, Alhaji Taofeek Akeugbagold, and former Commissioner for Works and Transport who also doubles as governorship aspirant of the ruling All Progressives Congress ahead of 2019 election, Yunus Akintunde, attributed their success stories to Alaafin who they regarded as “the magic wand and God send helper,” for their political career.

Akintunde, who tagged his lecture Alaafin’s capacity building, said the monarch remained the greatest ever living royal father in black Africa who wields political, economic and infrastructural powers to develop the town and its people, which prior to Oba Adeyemi ascension to the throne of his forbears was nothing to write home about.

The ex-works commissioner listed several road rehabilitation, reconstruction and infrastructural facilities brought to Oyo during his short stint in government, and highlighted a number of challenges of the town but was quick to add that, “with the never say-die spirit of Alaafin, all the grey areas will soon be over and Oyo will forever remain in the forefront of developmental greatness of the entire state. Kabiyesi’s intellectual prowess, philanthropy and uncanny love for development are legendary and we shall continue to drink from the milk of your fatherly gestures.”

Responding, Alaafin expressed appreciation to the people of Oyo, stressing: “It was rare to be alive and bear testimony to the great things one has done to develop human and material resources that are abound here. I am very happy that in my lifetime, people appreciate my footprints in the sand of time.

“When Yunus was dropped as commissioner, I went to meet the governor and attacked him. I queried what he did wrong. I said we needed to know what he did. And the governor was surprised I could come down to Ibadan on Yunus and since then, he multiplied the honour and respect he has for me. Many did not know I had no hand in his removal because the governor appointed my daughter as his replacement.

“Some people used the opportunity to create a wedge between me and Yunus but he was very wise. I never quarrelled with him and I dare say Yunus is very clean and upright. He used his position to bring developments to Oyo and I am proud of him,” Alaafin added.

Dignitaries from far and near, including Deputy Speaker, Oyo State House of Assembly, Hon. AbdulWasiu Musa; Commissioner of Police in the state, Abiodun Odude, Adams, Bishop Ayo Ladigbolu, Osolo of Isolo, Lagos, Oba Kabiru Agbabiaka, and scores of traditional rulers in Oyo and Oke-Ogun areas, were in attendance.

  • Agnes

    Asari Dokubo is indeed ripe for an ‘amayanabo’ title then.

  • omnia1


    Mazi Nnamdi Kanu started IPOB as a graduate who studied at universities both in Nigeria and overseas. Otunba (now Aare) Gani Adams started OPC as a stark illiterate.

    Mazi Nnamdi Kanu is a Political Economist trained at the prestigious London Metropolitan University. Otunba (now Aare) Gani Adams is a unlettered carpenter.

    Mazi Nnamdi Kanu promoted the non-violent route to self-determination; Gani’s OPC preached and practiced violence; including killing scores of policemen in his campaign for Odua nation.

    Mazi Nnamdi Kanu refused to be compromised; he rejected an oil block and numerous political overtures. Otunba (now Aare) Gani Adams collected contracts and perks from the same Nigerian government he was supposed to be criticizing.

    The last major effort of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu was to organize his men to serve as a shield against the murderous Fulani herdsmen; the last major effort of Otunba (now Aare) Ganiyu Adams was to organize his men to take their share in the 4 billion naira oil pipeline protection contract of FGN.


    SE Governors proscribed IPOB. OPC worked with the active connivance of SW State Governors and elites.

    Mazi Nnamdi Kanu faces “Operation Python Dance” and treason charges; Gani Adams is a “respected” and “celebrated” Yoruba statesman.

    Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s family is facing calls for the dethronement of his father as Eze of the tiny town of Isiama Afara. Gani Adams has been made an Otunba of Yorubaland; and has now been anointed as Aare Ona Kakanfo of the entire Yoruba race.


    • Peter Dele Ojo

      You are a fool and you will forever remain a fool, your Mazi Nnamdi Kanu where he is now, Gani Adams being given the title of Aare Onakankanfo was well deserved, he fought for the Yoruba race, I believe that some foolish minded people who does not see anything good about person will never see any good thing in Gani Adams. Gani Adams fought for June 12 with other people that was when the Oodua Peoples Congress was founded, he co-founded this with Dr. Fredrick Faseun. Gani Adams has sold the culture of the Yorubas even beyond the country. He is well respected by both the indigines and the foreigners, most people who go against Gani Adams being given the Aare Onakankanfo do so because of the stupid publication about him, this man Gani Adams who a degree in one of the Nigerian University, I am proud to tell you that Gani Adams is one of the Graduates Nigeria produced.

      • omnia1

        Are you Gani Adams using a fake name? I ask because your grammar is rather sub-standard (with due respect to you, Otunba). Anyway, enjoy your Aare title; after all, you are no worse than the 419 Ooni of Ife.

  • Sarah

    As a Yoruba and OYO town indigene, I am shocked by this new low our Alaafin is descending. It would be interesting to see the shortlist of 5 people from whom Gani Adams was chosen as the best. Another Alaafin appears to have made a WRONG selection on this occasion.
    Historically an Alaafin prevented British Colonialists from routing the Kano to Lagos rail line through OYO town hence the line has an unusual detour to Osogbo before returning to Ibadan. Another Alaafin prevented British Colonialists from establishing an airport in OYO town hence it was built in Ibadan. Unfortunately, the Alaafin’s traditional council of advisers have shied from exerting necessary corrective influence on his decisions. Historically the last time such happened, Alaafin was compelled to commit suicide, and the OYO Empire fell apart.
    Appointing Gani Adams to a position previously held by MKO Abiola severely lowers the standards and sends wrong signals to Yoruba youth. Abiola was educated to tertiary level, chartered accountant, rose to the highest level of the Nigeria branch of ITT, became a business mogul and nationally acclaimed philanthropist. Some say he was at some point the richest man in Nigeria.
    Adams gained fame as the brute enforcer of Odua People’s Congress. He led their campaigns to bomb and destroy national infrastructure. Nothing is known of his education. He was quite good at mobilising “..area boys..” to challenge constituted authority.

    • Daniel Obior

      Honestly speaking, I do not like the man Gani Adams. In a sensible country, such a man should not be honoured in anyway, by anybody, not even the Alafin of Oyo, for that matter. Unfortunately, Nigeria is no longer a sensible country, with any reasonable level of standards. Otherwise, Nigeria and in particular the Yorubas, with their political sophistication, could never have enthroned a barely literate, ex-military despot, known only to have parochial, nepotistic objectives, as president of the country. The point is that since the country has chosen to stoop that low, then anything else goes, including Gani Adams as the Aare Ona Kakanfo.

      • Peter Dele Ojo

        Daniel Obior, I do not expect you to like Gani Adams. Gani Adams was one of those people who fought for the Yoruba race, he gained fame for his actualisation of June 12 that was in 1994 when he and others co-founded Oodua People Congress, I believe you hated him because of rubbish they wrote about him. Gani Adams deserve the Aara Onakankanfo title, I believe those who gave him the title knew better than you do.

        • Daniel Obior

          I said I do not like the man, and that is my prerogative. I did not say I hate him, please. It is fine if you find him deserving of the title. I have only said that if Buhari can be president of Nigeria, why can’t Gani Adams be the Aare Ona Kakanfo? So, take it easy.

    • 45Degree

      Gani Adam, is the Aare Onakakanfo of Oyo town NOT of Yorubaland.

      • Sarah

        The Aare title dates back to the times of the Oyo Empire, which included SW Nigeria up to Nupe Land and westwards to present day Togo Republic.
        Specifically it is a title reserved for a non-indigene of Oyo Town. You may wish to call it their own way of ensuring ‘.. federal character..’ or ‘..empire character..’

        • jollyfella

          This charade will remain the greatest appalling low of all time for the alaafin. This beats me from all corners. Gani Adams of OPC? Shame to Alaafin! Shame to Afenifere!! Shame to all concerned!!!

    • Olisa

      Was Abiola a warrior by any standard?

      • Sarah

        Your question is irrelevant to the modern context of the Aare title.
        The last holder was MKO Abiola, a distinguished Yoruba and perhaps the most successful Nigerian businessman of his time. Unfortunately he was assassinated by Fulani coupists led by Abdsusalaam Abubakar.
        Before him it was Samuel Ladoke Akintola. Another leading Yoruba and Premier of the Western Region during the first republic. Unfortunately he was assassinated by Igbo coupists led by Nzeogu.
        How Oyo has gone from Akintola to Abiola to then select a glorified ‘..area boy..’ is left to the world to judge.

        • Olisa

          Point taken and appreciated, however it still doesn’t satisfy my curiosity about what the equivalence of a warrior-general should be in today’s context: a consummate businessman with a nationalistic outlook like Abiola? Or a Yoruba champion defending the interest of his ethnic group in in the context of a “modern” unitary system? Perhaps the title is obsolete.

          • AyoJon

            I agree with you 100%.

        • austin

          There is this folklore that the Kakanfo does not live very long. The two you mentioned above are modern times Kakanfos that died quite early. Maybe the Alaafin was being careful not to sacrifice another industrious Yoruba son to certain misadventure.
          Just saying.

          • Tunne


        • Peter Dele Ojo

          Fool you (area boy), but the Yorubas knew what Gani Adams has done for the Yoruba race, I don’t believe that a moron like you will referred to Gani Adams as area boy, Gani Adams is a graduate you can read about him in your Google.

      • super hero

        In modern terms, yes.

    • Neo Connect

      Well, it seems there is no end to the goofs of Alaafins. Unfortunately, these goofs continue to show them up as inferior strategists to the Oonis. Recall that the Alaafin in the 60s installed SL Akintola as Aare Ona Kakanfo in the middle of a power tussle that saw SLA disrupt the sociopolitical and economic advancements the South West accelerated since self-rule of 1954. That power tussle saw the then Ooni deposed as Governor of Western Region, and the one considered the people’s leader, Obafemi Awolowo, convicted of treason. I totally agree with you that the choice of Gani Adams sends a wrong signal for youths seeking role models. I believe people can change their status in life by changing themselves; not by manipulating their environments. May God bless Oyo with wise rulership.

    • Peter Dele Ojo

      Sarah, I don’t agree about the post against Gani Adams. Gani Adams was one of those who fought for the actualisation of annulled June 12 which made him to get fame, he co-founded the Oodua Peoples Congress in 1994, their goal was to fight for the Yoruba course, what I knew about your thought regarding Gani Adams, was all cork and bull stories you read about him, this make you to say, you did not know anything about his education background, even though I am not a member of OPC and I will never be, but one thing I knew about Gani Adams, if you could Google about him, Gani Adams now is a graduate for your information.