Akiolu: Benin Monarch Came to Lagos Territories, Fought and Conquered

Oba of Lagos, Rilwanu Akiolu

Denies claim Benin owns Lagos territory Endorses Ambode’s re-election, warns against rebellion

Gboyega Akinsanmi
Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Aremu Akiolu, stirred up another hornet’s nest on Monday on the Lagos-Benin connection, insisting that Benin Monarch came to the territory of Lagos, fought and conquered.

Contrary to widely circulated reports credited to him that the Benin Kingdom owned Lagos, the monarch clarified that he had never said at any time or any place that Lagos and its territories belonged to Benin.
Akiolu also warned some unnamed political actors at the federal level working with external forces to capture Lagos State, noting that unlike Ogun State, no person could capture the state as a slave again.

He spoke at a public lecture, which former United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Dr. Walter Carrington delivered on Monday at the Civic Centre, Victoria Island. The lecture was titled: Nigeria and Africa in a Changing World.
The lecture, which incisively x-rayed how Nigeria failed to unleash her socio-economic potentials in the world of 21st century, was held alongside the public presentation of a memoir: Defend the defenseless the diplomat’s wife, Dr. Arese Carrington just published.

The lecture, which was organised by the Lagos State Office of Overseas Affairs & Investment (Lagos Global), was attended by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Tunji Bello, who represented the state governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode and former Chairman of Punch Nigeria Limited, Chief Ajibola Ogunshola among others.
Giving goodwill message at the lecture, Akiolu said there was no way any person “can wish away the influence of Benin Kingdom in Lagos. The Benin monarch came to Lagos territories, fought and conquered.”

However, the monarch said he would reserve his comment on the Lagos-Benin connection till May 2018 when he would celebrate his 15th anniversary, noting that he would reply all of them who were making all sorts of comments about Lagos-Benin connection.
Specifically, Akiolu said: “I reserve my comment till when I will celebrate my 15th anniversary from May 15 to May 25, 2018. All of them, who are making all sorts of comments about Lagos-Benin connection, will know the kind of person Oba Akiolu is.

“No person, who has the full blood of Iga-Iduganran in him, can fault the claim of Lagos-Benin connection. Aside, there was no time Oba Akiolu said Benin Kingdom owned Lagos. I never said it. But no person can wash the influence of Benin monarch on Lagos away.
“The Benin monarch came, fought and conquered. The grace of Oba of Lagos, the descendants of Benin monarch is what is germinating in geometrical progression in Lagos up to date. They always refer to us as Olowo Eko… Very soon, I will come out in full shell. Then, all of them who are talking will keep quiet. The record is there in my possession.”

He endorsed Ambode for second term, noting that the leadership of Nigeria “is no longer for any corrupt or greedy person. That era has gone forever. Good governance as well as good leadership is what we want in Nigeria.
“This is what we have been able to display to Lagosians and Nigerians at large withAmbode, the highly respected, very intelligent and very hard-working governor. He has his own way of doing things.

“When former President Obasanjo said he wanted to capture Lagos, I made it personally clear to them that Lagos was not part of Ogun when you could capture Osoba and captured all of them. But as long as Iga-Iduganran is still there, Lagos, by God’s grace, cannot be a slave to any person.
“That is why Bola Ahmed Tinubu remains the only man standing. And they are at it again. I mean and I have said it before, nobody can capture Lagos. Nobody can stop Ambode. He is going to complete another term.
“When it is time to elect another governor, all praises be to Almighty God, I, Oba Rilwan Aremu Osuolale Akiolu, will not die. I will choose the next governor to move Lagos forward,” the monarch said.

Also at the public lecture, the Special Adviser, Office of Overseas Affairs & Investment, Prof. Ademola Abass said public lectures “do not only enrich the knowledge base of the citizenry at large on any given subject, they indeed enrich the state’s archival repository of information and knowledge all which play a crucial role in the enlightenment of the citizens and the development of the state.

“This has made the Lagos State government accept to sponsor this public lecture by Ambassador Walter Carrington who served as the United States’ Ambassador to Nigeria from 1993 to 1997, to promote the ideals upheld by all who fought hard for the democracy we enjoy today”.
“The period of Ambassador Carrington’s presence in Nigeria coincided with the country’s vigorous struggle for democracy. He is widely regarded as a friend of Nigeria and a progressive mind who joined hands with notable Nigerians in the struggle for democracy.”

  • challeng

    What is this former USA ambassador Walter Carrington doing in Nigeria all the time. Is he now living in Nigeria? I am tired of hearing about his advise.

    • Daddy

      …His wife is a Benin woman.

      • challeng


  • Dele Awogbeoba

    Yes you are a descendant of the Oba of Benin (who himself is a descendant of an Ife Prince) but you are also a direct male descendent of an Ilesha baba lawo. Your father’s fathers, fathers, father etc heritage leads to Ilesha and not to Benin. Your line took over the throne through the daughter of the first Eleko of Eko who married an Ilesha babalawo.

    • Chym


    • Sire Joshua Ifeanyichukwu

      Where did you think ododuwa (izodowa)came from. He was a bini Prince that was banished.

      • Dele Awogbeoba

        For the benefit of readers only, The origin of Oduduwa the man and human was clearly stated in the same book as coming from Mecca.

        “The Yorubas are said to have sprung from Lamurudu one of
        the kings of Mecca whose offspring were : — Oduduwa, the ancestor
        of the Yorubas, the Kings of Gogobiri and of the Kukawa, two
        tribes in the Hausa country. It is worthy of remark that these
        two nations, notwithstanding the lapse of time since their separa-
        tion and in spite of the distance from each other of their respective
        localities, still have the same distinctive tribal marks on their
        faces, and Yoruba travellers are free amongst them and vice versa
        each recognising each other as of one blood.

        At what period of time Lamurudu reigned is unknown but
        from the accounts given of the revolution among his descendants
        and their dispersion, it appears to have been a considerable time
        after Mahomet. ”

        Source: The History of the Yoruba
        Author: Samuel Johnson
        Written 1897 and published in 1921
        website- https[://]archive[.]org/stream/historyofyorubas00john/

        Jacob Egharevba’s ” A Short History of Benin” . Never made any connection between Oduduwa and a fictious lost prince because it was never a belief in the 1930’s. His account of the history was the irrefutable theory among respected academics that are not even Yoruba themselves, such as another respected
        Prof. Peter Ekeh of State University of New York.
        Quoting Jacob Egharevba: “When Evian was stricken by old age he
        nominated his eldest son, Ogiemwen as his successor, but the people
        refused him. They said he was not the Ogiso and they could not accept
        his son as his successor, because as he himself knew, it had been
        arranged to set up a republican form of government. This he was now
        selfishly trying to alter. While this was still in dispute the people indignantly sent an ambassador to the Ooni Oduduwa, the great and wisest ruler of Ife, asking him to send one of his sons to be their ruler, for things were getting from bad to worse and the people saw that there was need for a capable ruler.”
        This account was also confirmed by A.F.C Ryder in his book “The Journal of African History”
        Vol. 6, No. 1 (1965), pp. 25-37

        What you should start doing is quoting historical sources prior to 1960 (that is not tainted by later day revisionism) for your points. Lets have an academic debate based on historical sources.

        Earlier historical accounts finds the benin revised history of a “lost prince” false.
        “An Interpretation of Interregnum in Benin Kingdom 105 to be installing Ogiamien in Office, and made the third son of Evian a priest to be worshipping the deified departed spirit of Evian. .. While this [Ogiamwen’s claim of power] was still in dispute the people indig- nantly sent an ambassador to the Oni Odudua [more often called Oduduwa both by the Bini and Yoruba], the great and wisest ruler of Ife, asking him to send one of his sons to be their ruler (Egharevba 1960:6). III The first question that arises after reading the records cited above is: who and what could Evian and his son Ogiamwen have been? Dennett (1906:174) mentioned Ogiamwen as a retainer of the “king of Efa” titled ogiefa and pointed out that Ogiamwen’s descendants were still living in Benin when he had visited it in the early years of the twentieth century. Talbot in his relation introduces Ogiamwen as a descendant of the ruler … Abi-hio-Abi-hio-or Evien [no doubt identical with Evian] …- who was reigning over the Efa at Benin on the arrival of the Yoruba immigrants. The Uzaman [or uzama, the kingmaker chiefs of Second dynasty times] were his chiefs … (Talbot 1926, 2:582). Talbot wrote elsewhere (1926, 1:153) that the Yoruba raiders who had founded the ogiso dynasty in Benin, first met the Efa “… ruled by a large number of petty chiefs, those at Benin City being the Ogiame and the Uzaman Nihino (the seven Uzaman).” In the meantime a Bini legend tells that in the time when the oba dynasty came to power, land was defiled. And when the fourth oba Ewedo (ca. 1255-80 per Egharevba) finally established control over Benin City itself, he was forced to “buy” occupancy rights ceded by Chief Ogiamien, descendant of a previous indigenous regent. This transaction must be duplicated at each instal- lation. When the Oba purchases Ogiamien’s sand during his corona- tion, he acknowledges his own external origin and affirms land owner- ship as the birthright of the indigenous inhabitants. The spiritual authority to rule requires their ancestors’ endorsement (Curnow 1997:47; also see Nevadomsky 1984:56). So different records of tradition, legends, and rites Between the Ogiso and Oba Dynasties:

        An Interpretation of Interregnum in the Benin Kingdom


        PETER M. ROESE

        • Sire Joshua Ifeanyichukwu

          Not true. Ododuwa was a benin prince.

          • Dele Awogbeoba

            Produce your historical and documented source for that contention and ensure that documented source pre-dates 1960.

          • Sire Joshua Ifeanyichukwu

            Accept the truth don’t be controversial

          • Sire Joshua Ifeanyichukwu

            Yes you are right