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Families of deceased Ogun monarchs to determine mode of burial

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Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, on Monday, took a copy of the controversial bill regulating installation and burial rites of traditional rulers in the state to the private residence of the Awujale of Ijebuland, Oba Kayode Adetona, in Ijebu-Ode, Ogun state and signed it into law.

The bill was titled “Obas, Chiefs, Council of Obas and Traditional Council Law of Ogun State, 2021- A bill for a law to provide for an approved method for the selection, appointment and recognition of Obas, Chiefs and Traditional Council in Ogun State and for purposes incidental and supplementary to them.”

It sought to make “a law to provide for the preservation, protection and exercise by traditional rulers of their fundamental rights to be installed and buried according to their religions or beliefs and for other related matters.”

Traditional worshippers had opposed the bill, describing it as an attempt to erode the culture of the Yorubas.

Despite the opposition from the traditional worshippers, the assembly passed the bill late last year and forwarded it to Abiodun for his assent.

At the private residence of the Awujale, Abiodun who  was  joined by the Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Olakunle Oluomo; the Chairman of the State Traditional Council and Akarigbo of Remoland, Oba Babatunde Ajayi; the Olu of Ilaro, Oba Kehinde Olugbenle; and the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Oluwasina Ogungbade, signed the bill into law.

Speaking shortly after signing, the governor said the new law now empowers families to determine how remains of monarchs would be buried.

He said “The traditional institution is the oldest form of administration and a very dependable and reliable one at that.

“This law was promoted by kabiyesi, the Awujale, during his tenure as the chairman of the Ogun State Traditional Council.

“I believe that one of the unique things about this law, besides the fact that it spells out a method of selection of Obas and chiefs, is a clarity that this law now provides as it relates to the passage rites of our kabiyesis (monarchs).

“This law seeks to improve on previously existing Western region laws or where there had been ambiguity as it relates to how our kabiyesis will be buried. Henceforth, this law now empowers the families to determine how our kabiyesis will be will be buried.”

In his remarks, the Awujale said the signing of the bill by the governor has guaranteed him his re-election.

He noted that both Muslims and the Christians “are grateful to him for signing the bill.”

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