As the succession to the throne of the Alaafin of Oyo gets underway, the Agunloye Ruling House of Oyo Kingdom, Oyo state, has agreed to entertain only 50 aspirants in the race to produce the next Alaafin of Oyo.
An elder in the ruling house said the family decided to streamline the number of aspirants, to make the process easier.
According to him, the Agunloye family is made up of five branches – Ilaka, Akingbeyin, Gbadegesin, Agogo Ija and Owoade – and the larger family has agreed that each branch, should limit its aspirants to 10.
“We have agreed to limit the number of aspirants to 10 in each family branch so we won’t have an uncontrollable number. I pray it works.
“Aspirants are to submit their letter of intent to their family heads who will take them to the larger Agunloye family meeting, scheduled for May 21. Leaders of the larger Agunloye family will then take the letters to Baba Iyaji (head of princes) in Oyo, who will hand over the applications to the Oyomesi for final selection”, he added.
Consequently, families have scheduled meetings to decide on their aspirants in any time soon.
Meanwhile, the former Minister of Police Affairs, Jelili Adewale Adesiyan, has declared his intention to ascend to the stool.
In a letter to the Chief Baba Iyaji of Oyo, Mukaila Afonja, who is also the Head of Princes, Adesiyan said as a great grandchild of Adesiyan, and descendant of Atiba, he is putting his foot forward to succeed Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III and would be bringing to the stool his wealth of experience in leadership gained over the years.
In the meantime, the Baba Iyaji had earlier told journalists that succession moves had started discreetly among interested princes, as according to him, the procedure was that interested princes from the next ruling house, submitting their applications to him but he was yet to receive any.
However, according to the white paper on Oyo State Chieftaincy Gazette 2001 Page 356, II, it was declared that only one ruling house is in Oyo — Atiba Ruling House, this therefore allows all Atiba descendants to vie for the throne of Alaafin.