The Ilajo Royal family of Kabba, Kogi State has kicked against the planned erection of a new palace for the paramount ruler, the Obaro of the town.
The family, during a press briefing held on Tuesday at the Aoffin palace, Kabba, urged the state governor, Yahaya Bello, to give room for the court the rule in the pending case in the law court before constructing a new palace.
Speaking on behalf of the Royal family, the spokesman of the family and Secretary Ilajo Planning Committee, High Chief Peter Oloba, noted that the present Obaro palace has existed for over 200 years and has housed more than 15 different Obaros.
Oloba also wondered why a new palace will be built at this point in time when litigation over the Obaro tussle is still pending in court, saying that the family was surprised when the current Obaro of Kabba, Chief Dele Owoniyi on the occasion of Kabba cultural day celebration said there is no existing palace in the town.
Newsmen were also taken to see the tombs of over 15 Obaros who reigned, died and were buried within the palace.
The family also stated that the first Governor-General of Nigeria, Lord Fredrick Lugard and some past Nigerian leaders like General Ibrahim Babangida, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo and vice president Yemi Osibanjo, had visited the palace at different times.
According to the spokesman of the family, “We see this distortion as a deliberate act of causing confusion and as usual, a way of distorting the historical facts and age-long tradition and culture of Owe land by insinuating that there is no palace in Kabba.
“We hereby set the records straight, and wish to state categorically without equivocation, that Kabba Town has always had a Palace, a significant paraphernalia of Royalty and the centre point of Owe culture and tradition. And this is the palace of Obaros of Kabba.”
While stating the names and dates of some of the Obaros that reigned, died and were buried in the Palace, he mentioned Obaro Baba Mokelu, (1870) Obaro Baba Ajinuhi, (1870), Obaro Baba Gbayero Ajibohokun, (1923) Obaro Atikekerejolu Oluyori,(1928) and Obaro Obamudi Olu Owe Arokoyo, (1932).
Others he said are, Obaro Obafakun Olobayo Ero1, (1936),Obaro Olle Akikan Ajibohokun, (1942), Obaro Ologbonyo Arokoyo, (1957) and Obaro Michael Folorunsho Olobayo, Ero2, (2016).
Continuing he said, “We therefore believe that the Kogi State Government should not get involved in an issue that is not unconnected with the matter in courts of the land.
“Finally, we of Ilajo, the Royal Family of Kabba, Oweland are praying the Kogi State Government to allow for the full determination of the subsisting court case before a decision regarding palace is made.
“This plan, if implemented now, is capable of generating avoidable tension and can, therefore, put law and order into jeopardy.”