Adewale Adetoyese, Osun
The Ooni of Ife, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja II, on Sunday declared his solidarity and that of the entire Yoruba race for the Itsekiri people of Warri, Delta State, over the crisis rocking the kingdom’s succession move for the vacant Olu of Warri stool.
EyewitnessMedia gathered that the Ooni made this known through his Easter message signed by his Director of Media and Public Affairs, Moses Olafare, calling on the Oodua people worldwide to find the lowest common factor that exists in their shared history, shared fear and shared aspirations.
This is as a 400-year-old crown and symbol of the Itsekiri monarchy was declared missing, after some interested parties in the succession battle invaded the palace (Aghofe) in the Warri metropolis.
Reacting, the Ooni asked the Yoruba nation to solidarize with their own Itsekiri people who are in the process of choosing their new monarch; Olu of Warri, saying the unity of Yoruba people will further strengthen peace and understanding in Nigeria.
He called on Yoruba people across Nigeria including those outside the South West States to pray and work together for peace and harmony of Nigeria.
“Irrespective of which state you find yourself either Akoko, Itsekiri in Delta, Okun, Oworro in Kogi, we are all children of Oduduwa bound by common ancestry” the Ooni said.
The Ooni said the Royalty in the House of Oduduwa is watching events in Itsekiri land and would appreciate the people continue to honour and respect the bound of oneness and common ancestry of with the Yoruba people.
“The Itsekiri are part of the greater Oduduwa family. We cherish this great history. We shall do everything to defend and uphold it.
“We are aware of the Itsekiri General Assembly coming up tomorrow Monday, April 04 in Warri.” The Ooni said.
The Ooni equally sent solidarity message to the Itsekiri people on this great occassion of their reunion. We wish them peace and harmony in their search for properity in their ancestral land.
He stressed that he is particularly keen to see the sustainability of the blood-bound relationship between the Itsekiri and the Yoruba, a relationship that has been tested and trusted over history. Generations of Yoruba and Itsekiri have the responsibility to uphold this important of our history”
Credible sources agree that the missing crown was first worn by Ogiame Atuwatse (Dom Domingos) who reigned from 1625 to 1643), and it was said to be a parting gift from the King of Portugal after Dom Domingos completed his education in the European country in 1611.