Lagos Belongs To Benin – Obanikoro’s Grandson Layiwola Ajayi-Bembe Explains |The Republican News

Engr. Layiwola Ajayi-Bembe

– The grandson of the eighth Obanikoro of Lagos has spoken on the issue surrounding the ownership of the state

– Engineer Layiwola Ajayi-Bembe said Lagos truly belongs to the people of Benin

– According to the octogenarian, it was agreed at a meeting in 1903 that Obas in Lagos should not wear crowns

An octogenarian and grandson of the eighth Obanikoro of Lagos, Engineer Layiwola Ajayi-Bembe, has given a deeper insight into the history of Lagos and its relationship with Benin.

Layiwola also said that Obas in Lagos were historically referred to as ‘Elekos’ and did not wear crowns.

Speaking with’s correspondent, Adeoye Adewunmi, in an exclusive telephone interview, Layiwola, who is the chairman of County and City Bricks, disabused the minds of people who believe that Lagos is ‘no man’s land’.

Ajayi-Bembe explained that the decision of the Obas in Lagos not to wear crowns was resolved at a royal meeting held in 1903.

He further explained that Lagos belongs to the Bini (Benin) and not the Yorubas as it is misconstrued, adding that there are still relics of Benin all over Isale Eko.

He said, “Obas (in Lagos) – we don’t call them ‘obas’, we call them ‘eleko’ and they don’t wear crown.

“My grandfather was at a royal meeting in 1903 when there was a dispute of which traditional rulers should wear crowns.

“Ooni of Ife had to come all the way from Ife to Lagos upon the invitation of Governor (John Hawley) Glover.

“And the question they asked him (Ooni) was: ‘Who are the Obas that should wear crowns?’ He mentioned them – Lagos was not part of the list. We don’t wear crowns in Lagos.

“Lagos is Bini, not only because we came from Benin. There are signs and relics of Benin all over Isale Eko.

“Enuowa is in Lagos; Idumota is a Bini name; Iduntafa is Bini name; Idunmagbo is Bini name; Iduganran is Bini name; tell me, what further proof do you want (that the Bini own Lagos)?” (

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Two Princes Challenge Traditional Royal Throne Of Oba Of Lagos In Court


Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu

By Romanus Okoye

The Oba of Lagos, Rilwan Akiolu has declared that he was the bonafide king of Lagos.

“I’m here to justify my appointment, you cannot build something on nothing, it will become broken.

“By native law and customs and by law, I am the bonafide Oba of Lagos,” Akiolu said, yesterday, while testifying before an Ikeja High Court.

Akiolu’s  installation as the Oba of Lagos is being challenged by Prince Adedoyin Adebiyi and Prince Rasheed Modile, two members of the Lagos royal family.

The Governor of Lagos State, the Attorney-General of Lagos State, Prince Babatunde Akitoye and Chief Junaid Eko were joined as respondents in the suit.

Adebiyi and Modile are claiming that Akiolu is not entitled to be on the throne because he is not a member of a ruling royal family by not being a direct descendant of  Oba Ado, the first Oba of Lagos.

According to the claimants, only members of the Ologun Kutere and Akinsemoyin ruling households were entitled to the throne.

They have also alleged that proper customary rules and procedures were not followed when he was installed as Oba in May 2003.

While being led in evidence by his lawyer, Mr. Adetokunbo Mumuni, Akiolu told the court about the procedure he followed to become the king: “After I made my intention known to my family that I wanted to be Oba of Lagos and I applied for the throne, in May 2003, the head of the kingmakers and the then sole administrator of Lagos Island called at my residence.

“At that time, I was preparing to go to the mosque and I was told that I received a letter from the state government and the executive council of Lagos.

“The letter was  accepting  my nomination that I had been approved to be a worthy successor of the then late Oba of Lagos.

“It is exactly 14 years that my appointment was approved.

“By the grace of Almighty Allah, there is nothing like rotation in the succession to be  the Oba of Lagos.”

Lawyer to the claimants, Mr. Babatunde Fashanu (SAN), asked Akiolu whether proper customary procedure was followed when he became king, and Akiolu replied that he was customarily installed as Oba by kingmakers.

“Akiolu is a direct descendant of Oba Ologun Kutere, there is no registered declaration for the throne.

“It is the old customs and the recommendations of the Price Commission, which is over 100 years old, that is valid till now,” he said.

The Oba also debunked claims that the Akiolu royal family was not a ruling house because it was non-existent.

“Despite the letter from Lagos State confirming my appointment as Oba, stating that I am from the Akiolu royal family. I want to make it clear that a royal family and ruling house means the same thing.

“My appointment as the king was the first time in  history that kingmakers would be unanimous in selecting an Oba of Lagos,” he said.

Presiding judge, Justice A. Candide-Johnson, adjourned the case until June 19, 2017, for continuation of trial.  (The Sun)

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Afenifere, Agbekoya, Okurounmu, Others Rebuke Akiolu For Snubbing Ooni Of Ife

Image result for ooni and oba of lagos

Ooni of Ife and Oba of Lagos 

Femi Atoyebi, Samuel Awoyinfa, Friday Olokor and Femi Makinde

The President-General of the Agbekoya Farmers Association in Nigeria, Chief Aremu Okikiola, has called on the Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu, to respect the Yoruba traditional hierarchy instead of debasing it.

Oba Akiolu snubbed Oba Ogunwusi at a public in Lagos on Tuesday when they latter attempted to greet him.

The Agbekoya chief, who spoke through the National Publicity Secretary of the association, Chief Olatunji Bamidele, said it was wrong for traditional leaders to disrespect themselves in the public, saying that Agbekoya, as a Yoruba socio-cultural group, would not support any traditional ruler that displayed immature attitude in public.

He said, “Any mature traditional ruler should not fight in the public. They should find a way of solving whatever the issue is in private. The Ooni and the Alaafin are the most respected Yoruba obas. Akiolu should not disrespect the tradition.”

“Akiolu should not be rude to that extent because he is only an Oba of Lagos. Agbekoya will not support any traditional ruler that is rude to the Ooni.”

Speaking on behalf of the Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji, Director, Media and Public Affairs to the monarch, Adeola Oloko, told our correspondent that the Olubadan revered the Ooni and Akiolu, saying that he was making contact with the two monarchs to find a solution to the issue.

“I can tell you that the Olubadan had been making contacts with the Ooni and the Oba of Lagos, whom he respects mostly, with the view to mediating in the issue. He will talk to the press as soon as there is information to pass across. As an elder, he is making the contact,” said Oloko.

A chieftain of the pan-Yoruba socio-cultural association, Afenifere, Chief Femi Okunrounmu, said Oba Akiolu’s action was an embarrassment to the Yoruba race.

He said the action portrayed the Yoruba as an unorganised set of people before the world.

He noted that it was unfortunate that some monarchs in Yoruba land did not seek the interest of their subjects.

He pointed that Yoruba elders would talk to Oba Akiolu on what he termed unbecoming behaviour.

Also, the Yoruba Youth Socio-Cultural Association has condemned Oba Akiolu for snubbing the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, publicly at a function.

The youths, through their coordinator in Osun State, Mr. Adeboye Oluwabusoye, said the attitude of Oba Akiolu was wrong and it was not expected of any king in Yoruba land to disrespect the Ooni.

But the Ooni has said he will not stop according Oba Akiolu with respect despite snubbing him at a social function on Tuesday.

The foremost traditional ruler in Yoruba land said he was unperturbed by Akiolu’s action, adding that the action would not make him to lose focus of his resolve to ensure unity among traditional rulers in the land.

Oba Ogunwusi spoke to our correspondent through the Director Media and Public Affairs of Ooni’s Palace, Moses Olafare, on Wednesday.

The monarch said, “Nobody should castigate anybody for doing what he did because of the position he held and because of his age.” The Ooni will not stop according his colleagues and every category of people the respect they deserved.  (

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