The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja II, has urged the federal government to review the constitution to give more authority to traditional rulers than local government chairmen. This was reported by Newsflash Nigeria, which covered the eighth anniversary of the Nigeria Most Influential Awards held in Abuja.
The Ooni, who was represented by Onifegunwa of Ifegunwa, Oba Adedire Adewole Solomon, said that the constitution has reduced the powers of traditional rulers and made them subordinate to the government. He said that this was unacceptable and that there should be a constitutional amendment to reflect the personality and influence of traditional rulers in their communities.
He said, “As the established authorities, we require a review of the constitution. According to our constitution, the government has complete authority over the traditional ruler. There is a clause in the constitution that makes the king less powerful to the extent that even a local government chairman has power over a monarch. It is not done, there should be a review. Position is good, but personality matters.
“Ooni is extremely simple. He is a realist. With that, he is aware of the needs of people and communities. It makes no difference where you stand, but how close are you to the grassroots?
“The Ooni previously told the National Assembly members that although they live in wealth and luxury, how many of them can spend a week in their hometowns and villages? It’s what we Kings do.”
The Ooni of Ife is one of the most respected and influential traditional rulers in Nigeria. He is the spiritual leader of the Yoruba people and the custodian of their culture and heritage. He is also known for his philanthropic and humanitarian activities, as well as his advocacy for peace and unity among Nigerians.