The Chief Priest of the ancient town of Ile-Ife, Chief Olajide Farotimi Faloba has described as untrue the news of the demise of Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuade.
He also described a report (not in Vanguard) that the remains of the foremost royal father had been secretly brought home as untrue insisting that the monarch was still alive.
Speaking with Vanguard yesterday at the Ile Oduduwa, an ancient grove believed to have housed the first Ooni of Ile-Ife, Chief Faloba debunked the reported arrival of the monarch’s corpse, saying Ooni was hale and hearty in the United Kingdom.
The Chief priest, who spoke in Yoruba language said: “I just came from the Ooni’s palace and there was nothing that showed that he (Ooni) is dead. If truly such happened, there would be restriction to the palace, the palace gate will be shut, market will be closed and all trees in the town would be cut down; these are part of signs that Ooni has joined his ancestors.
“In fact, Ooni’s son, Adegbite is having his wedding in Lagos as we speak. Thus it did not show any sign of mourning. If the rumour is true, we (himself and other chiefs at the grove) should be the ones to announce it. We are the owner of our culture, we are the owner of Oba Sijuwade.
”Obaship in Ife kingdom is sacred and should be handled as such,”, he added.