The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi has urged Nigerians to discountenance a video circulated on social media which claimed that the Chinese nationals involved in illegal mining in Osun State paid him before their illegal activities.
Oba Ogunwusi noted that attempts to embarrass the sacred throne of the Ooni by some acclaimed farmers from Ibadan were laughable.
A statement issued by the Director of Media and Public Affairs at the Ooni’s Palace, Mr. Moses Olafare stated that “it is unfortunate that some supposed Omoluabis as known of descendants of Oduduwa globally would allow themselves to be used against their own source and heritage; it is equally pathetic to realise the damage being currently done by the malicious video, especially against the person, image and character of the Arole Oduduwa
“A group of people led by someone who claimed to have come from Ibadan to farm on the land was mobilised to report the activities of some Chinese nationals alleged to have been sent by the Ooni, who according to them had been paid a large sum of money.
“The disputed land is located at Aruwa village within the Alaba-Ijesa community in Atakumosa West Local Government. It is an Ijesa land under the paramount rulership of Oba Adekunle Aromolaran, the Owa-Obokun of Ijesaland. The traditional ruler of the town ‘Oba Alaba of Aba-Ijesa who should have been earlier contacted before the stage-managed video is still alive and should be the one to clarify the matter.”
He said those who made the video were were only being mischievous, adding that the Palace of the Ooni ,which houses several traditional courts through which issues, including those related to land grabbing, domestic violence, chieftaincy matters among others are being resolved amicably is always made open to such complaints.
“Such a matter should have been reported to the Ooni whose Palace is always open to seek clarifications and get his side of the story. But with the confrontational approach of sponsors and promoters of the video, it is obvious that they were only out to smear the image of the Ooni.
“Unfortunately, the Ooni and other right-thinking individuals who saw the stage-managed video laughed over the comedy and prayed that the good Almighty Olodumare forgives those behind the campaign of calumny. In the same vein, the agents of confusion are equally implored to desist from such shameful acts. The Ooni wishes to urge the entire public to ignore the video and its fabricated lies in its entirety.
Ooni commended the security operatives for their proactiveness in cleansing the mining sector in the Osun State and vow to continue to be of help in combating illegal mining in the state.
“We hereby reject in its entirety the malicious amateur video report mischievously released to the social media platforms with uninvestigated allegations against the Ooni of Ife, Ooni Adeyeye Ogunwusi, linking him to the destructions of farmlands by some Chinese nationals as allegations of such magnitude should have been logically investigated before being released to the public,” the statement added.