Former President Obasanjo Explains Why he Ordered Oyo Obas to Stand

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has shed light on why he ordered the Oyo traditional rulers to stand during a recent event in Iseyin, Oyo State. Speaking from South Africa where he was attending a burial, Obasanjo recounted the incident and expressed his surprise at the monarchs’ refusal to stand as a sign of respect for the governor.

According to Obasanjo, upon his arrival at the venue with the governor, he noticed that everyone else rose except for the Obas. He considered this a breach of protocol and a disrespect towards the governor. When it was the governor’s turn to speak, Obasanjo observed that everyone, including himself, stood up as demanded by protocol. However, the Obas remained seated.

Perplexed by their behavior, Obasanjo inquired about this practice in Oyo State and was informed that the Obas had always displayed disrespect towards their governor. This revelation prompted him to address the issue directly with the traditional rulers.

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Obasanjo emphasized that regardless of status or age, everyone must respect the governor as stipulated by the constitution. He highlighted the importance of observing protocols and maintaining respect for authorities. The former president stressed that disrespecting authorities is not part of Yoruba culture and urged the Obas to learn to deal with their governor with respect if they wish to be respected in return.

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While acknowledging his deep respect for traditional rulers, Obasanjo emphasized the need to strike a balance between culture and constitution. He stated that he has always shown reverence to traditional rulers, even during his presidency. However, he emphasized that it is crucial to recognize the constitutional hierarchy, which places the chairman as head of a local government, the governor as head of a state, and the president as head of the country.

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In conclusion, Obasanjo reiterated his belief in respecting both culture and constitution. He called for a harmonious relationship between traditional rulers and government authorities, emphasizing that one should not disrupt the other.


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