RECENTLY, the Oyo State government announced the setting up of a seven-person committee to look into certain anomalies in the Olubadan chieftaincy institution and make recommendations to rectify them.
Among the core issues are age, lineage, succession, academic qualifications for ascension to the throne and decentralisation of authority.
According to the government, it is not possible for one person to rule all the areas in Ibadanland.
However interesting the idea is, it is not flawless for some obvious reasons. It is conceded that the governor as the helmsman of the state has the executive power to cause reform or make certain correction in any sphere of administration
Again, I quite agree that we should not be rigidly conservative.basically, there must be elasticity of ideas. But in this case, the proposed changes are most unnecessary.
Ibadan has its criteria for selecting traditional rulers by virtue of the arrangement put in place by our progenitors. It has been the best so far, acclaimed not only in Yorubaland, but also beyond the shores of Nigeria.
In fact, those who evolved the selection system had cogent reasons for their action. It is interesting to note that the lineage system allows for easy succession on two sides: military and non-military.
Any time the stool was declared vacant, it has always been filled. So why the change?
On the question of literacy as a qualification for ascension to the throne, I think most of the senior chiefs now can read and write. They can communicate effectively. Besides, old age is not a bad thing in chieftaincy matters.
On the contrary, maturity and experience are sorely needed to achieve success in administering places like Ibadanland.
Ibadan, Oyo State.