By Nwankwo T. Nwaezeigwe, Ph.D
The first fundamental question to the likes of Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Femi Fani-Kayode and Bayo Onanuga is, at what point in the history of Igbo presence in Lagos State did they ever take up arms against their Yoruba hosts in the likeness of the Hausa and Fulani? The second fundamental question is who among them—I mean Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Femi Fani-Kayode and Bayo Onanuga has contributed to the positive development of Lagos State with their hard-earned personal resources more than the Igbo? Unfortunately, the vexatious aspect of these anti-Igbo incendiary vituperations is that their bearers are those whose Yoruba ancestries are shrouded in detestable historical obscurantism.
Let us take them one after the other, from Oba Rilwan Akiolu through Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Femi Fani-Kayode to Bayo Onanuga. Most disgusting is that none of these men of hate-filled utterances against the Igbo in Lagos State are true descendants of Yorubaland and thus it becomes ridiculous that such people should be spear-heading the call for pogrom against the Igbo in Lagos State.
Oba Rilwan Akiolu might claim to be Yoruba today through Benin conquest theory, but in truth he is of Nupe Origin. He was born out of marriage by a Nupe trader in Idumota before his mother got married to the man who subsequently adopted him as his son. This explains why some members of the Lagos royal family of which Musliu Anibaba was one never accepted him as a rightful occupant of the exalted Eleko of Eko throne of Lagos which he used his privileged oppressive Police mentality to usurp.
The most interesting but instructive question is has there been any traditional kingdom in Nigeria with a Policeman as its king without obnoxious anti-people and anti-stranger policies as we find in Lagos State today? This further explains why the revered ancestors of Eleko throne seized his staff of office, an action unheard of in the annals of Lagos history. Most interesting is that this is the same Oba Akiolu who in May 2017, as reported on May 3, 2017 issue of Daily Post by Seun Opejobi, short of telling the world that he is not of Yoruba by ancestry, stated that Lagos does not belong to Yoruba nation.
Nigerians in particular and the world at large wish to know what investment Oba Rilwan Akiolu used his over thirty years of service in Nigeria Police Force to attract to Lagos State where he sits on the throne as traditional monarch. Is it not shameful to the person of Oba Akiolu that while some foreign nations are speedily granting citizenship by investment to foreigners he is there in his so-called Eleko of Eko throne speedily chasing away those who came to invest by violently disenfranchising non-Yoruba citizens of citizens of Lagos State of their civic rights and responsibilities?
One is still surprised that Alhaji Yekini Amoda Ogunlere a. k. a Bobo Chicago now turned Bola Ahmed Tinubu should be dictating who should exercise his civic franchise of voting for a particular candidate in Lagos State. This is the same man whose great grandfather migrated from Borgu in the present Niger State to Iragbiji in Osun State and who was privileged to associate with the family of Madam Tinubu through his mother who served the latter as a housemaid; and later changed his name from Yekini Amoda Ogunlere to Bola Tinubu to cover up his forged Chicago-Toronto degree. Will it surprise Nigerians that when Yekini Amoda Ogunlere’s real mother died in Iragbiji he refused to attend the funeral as a way of covering his true identity? But can Bola Tinubu deny that the last Osun State Governor Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola from Iragbiji is his nephew—the son of his senior sister?
Femi Fani-Kayode says he attended University of Cambridge but showcases his psycho-intellectual stupidity with the carriage of Usumanu dan Fodiyo University graduate like Quota Prof Mamoud Yakubu. After all one does not need competitive entrance examination to be admitted to University of Cambridge but the ability to pay the fees. For him to claim Yoruba origin simply shows the depth of his acute gangrenous dementia founded on insane rascality. I have several times in the past told Femi Fani-Kayode that he is a Nupe man and not Yoruba and if he has forgotten his ancestry and genealogy, let me state them once again.
His great grandfather Rev. Emmanuel Adedapo Kayode was a Sierra Leonean liberated slave of Nupe origin recruited by Bishop Samuel Ajayi Crowther to help in the translation of the Bible to Nupe language. In the process of his assignment he not only changed his identity to Yoruba but was ordained an Anglican Priest by Bishop Samuel Ajayi Crowther, who later sent him to Ile-Ife as the pioneer missionary. He subsequently adopted Ile-Ife as his hometown. To fully integrate himself into Yoruba ethnic society, Bishop Ajayi Crowther arranged a wife from the prestigious Cole family of Victorian Lagos for him. His wife’s brother was indeed the founding Principal of Abeokuta Grammar School from 1906 t0 1920, and the founding Principal of Oduduwa College, Ile-Ife. Femi Fani-Kayode should therefore be informed that his real State of origin is Niger State; and his real ethnic identity is Nupe and not Yoruba. So he has no business challenging the Igbo in Lagos State.
Bayo Onanuga as someone with questionable Yoruba identity should be a shameless man indeed for questioning the right of the Igbo in Lagos State to vote for their preferred candidates, a State he is as much a stranger as any Igbo man. May be his present role as the defender of the defenceless Bola Tinubu appears to have acutely blurred his sense of debased Yoruba ancestry founded on his great grandfather’s Nupe origin.
Bayo Onanuga should have been advised to quietly occupy his beggarly office of Bola Tinubu’s Presidential campaign spokesman if he actually understands his polluted Nupe ancestry. A man whose great grandfather was a Nupe slave who escaped the notorious Ijebu mass slave sacrifices of 1892 against British invasion and sought refuge with Otunba Biodun Onanuga’s great grandfather who subsequently adopted him as his slave till later British colonial emancipation should be ashamed to call himself a bona fide Yoruba man much more questioning Igbo positive presence in Lagos State.
- Dr. Nwaezeigwe is Odogwu of Ibusa & Combatant Political Historian Research Fellow@Exile, Institute of African Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka; International Coordinator, Nigerian Diaspora Council for Defence of Democracy (NDCDD).
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