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Monday, 16 October 2017

OPINIONS ON AARE ONAKAKANFO: The Cap Fits Gani Adams.

AARE ONAKAKANFO: The Cap Fits Gani Adams by Ogunwusi Bamidele Segun.

 

Bob Nesta Marley, the legendary reggae king says in one of his popular hits that  "Who the cap fit, let them wear it".

Who is Aare ONAKAKANFO?


In ancient times, it was a position that symbolized the might of Oyo Empire. The Aare Onakakanfo was the generalissimo of the Yoruba army. He either conquered or died. The kakanfo must never be defeated. To everybody’s shock, the mystique and tragedy have refused to depart from that office even in modern times.

Samuel Johnson, the foremost authority on Yoruba history described the Kakanfo as fearless and courageous; irascible and prone to warfare. 

To buttress his position, Johnson submitted a most effective piece of evidence: Kakanfo Ojo Aburumaku had no war to fight. He fomented a civil war in his native Ogbomoso which he then had a good sport of putting down with severity. Afterall, he was Aare Onakakanfo, the Supreme head of the Esos, the 70 military commanders who make the Yoruba warrior caste.

Search for Gani

In the last 19 years, many names have dominated  discussions as possible Aare ONAKAKANFO of Yorubaland.

From Alani Akinrinade to Olusegun Obasanjo, from Victor Omololu Olunloyo to Gen Aduwo and from  Faseheun to Bola Tinubu.

Thank God Gani is not a moneybag because if he is, many people would have argued he bought the title. 

Looking at antecedents, I am  convinced he deserves it more than the last two occupants who were politicians.

Oba Adeniran Alabi, Oba Adeyemi 11 gave the title to Ladoke Akintola to spite Awolowo and he got  deposed for that singular act. Akintola was Aare between 1962 and 1966.
The last occupant, MKO Abiola got the title not because of his contribution to Yorubaland but was meant to boost his CV for Presidency. 

For me, the last  true warrior of the title was Aare Latoosa who later became Olubadan between 1914 to 1925.

For 37 years the title was vacant before it was given to Akintola.

It was vacant again for 22 years before MKO Abiola emerged and 19 years later, the title which has gone to notable warlords from Ajase, Ijaiye, Ibadan, Ogbomoso has berthed in the remote town of Arigidi Akoko to a man who is older in intelligence, experience and maturity than his 47 years.

Congratulations, Aare Gani Adams

Segun Bamidele Ogunwusi a Financial Journalist for Independent Newspapers writes from Lagos.


HOW OTUNBA GANI ADAM EMERGED AS THE 15TH AARE ONA KAKANFO OF YORUBALAND
- By Adejare Ibrahim. 
Few months ago, we were with the Alaafin of Oyo in the palace. We were about five in his private office (Prince Adeyemi Akeem, Prince Adeleke Adeyemi, Otunba Ajeje Rasaki and I). He was taking us through some lessons on Yoruba history. In the cause of our discussion, the issue of the Aare Ona Kakanfo was raised by Prince Adeleke. Kabiyesi, in his response said: 
"Yorubas are blessed with many illustrious sons; who are capable of being saddled with the exalted; but taxing, position of Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland. Due to one reason or the other, some are avoiding it".

Based on his pedigree and influence across all divides in Nigeria; especially in Yorubaland, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu was approached, but he declined the sumptuous offer. He forbore, not borne out of fear, but as a result of the attending heavy tasks required of the office, which he may not have the luxury of time to expeditiously perform. He said "Asiwaju Tinubu has been penned down for another title, the Asiwaju of Yorubaland". This will be done in collaboration with other prominent monarchs in Yorubaland.

Furthermore, he said, "Chief Olusegun Obasanjo is equally capable and eminently qualified, but age is no more on his side. I would have loved him being the Aare Ona Kakanfo. Obasanjo is brave and fearless". Fayose and some other prominent Yorubas were also mentioned. The Alaafin then assured that: Though, it is the prerogative of the Alaafin to appoint anyone deemed fit for the title, but further consultations will be made. By these assertions of Kabiyesi, it became emphatic and expedient that the two gladiators, Tinubu and Obasanjo, are out of the race. 

After all, it is not that there are no other people of high profile besieging the palace of Kabiyesi, jostling for the burdensome title. However, the title of Aare of Ona Kakanfo is not that ceremonial. It means the Generalissimo of Yorubaland in the real sense of it. The Aare Ona Kakanfo heads the Alaafin's special military force and the entire army of the Yoruba nation. Holding this premium title is arduous, onerous, laborious and demanding. You must think well, before taking such a task. It is no child's play. Therefore, the Aare Ona Kakanfo is the exclusive preserve of the greatest Yoruba tactician.

Otunba Gani Adam is one of the besiegers who intermittently throng the palace of the Alaafin for the title of Aare Ona Kakanfo. I have seen him in the palace on many occasions. Gani Adams may not be liked by all, but give it to him, he is definitely paying his dues. Without mincing words, Otunba is a force to reckon with in Yorubaland. Take it or leave it, this young man has made indelible imprints. As a human being, he is not perfect. He has his shortcomings, deficiencies and inadequacies. Nevertheless, he is eminently qualified and up to the task. He is educated and well-known. His name is not strange to anyone. Mention him anywhere, he is known. Gani Adam is a household name. His OPC and OPU are the strongest forces the Yoruba nation can parade anywhere. He has close relationship and good rapport with all the southwest governors. He is an icon in his own right.

His Imperial Majesty, the Alaafin of Oyo, after extensive and exhaustive consultations, has revealed his choice. He has picked Otunba Gani Adam as the 15th Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, The Field Marshal of all sons and daughters of Oduduwa. This is a carefully made choice. The same Alaafin that installed Chief MKO Abiola is the same the Alaafin that has opted for Gani Adam_ a difference of almost thirty years! 

In spite of the wide acceptance that greeted the choice of Abiola, it was still contested by the Late Amuda Olorunosebi, the Ashipa of Oyo, in the Oyo State High Court by his legal Counsel, Chief M.L. Lagunju. Everybody cannot accept a decision uniformly. We are not the same. It was the brilliant defence of the legal luminary, Chief Afe Babalola, in the presence of Justice Aderemi of the Oyo State High on behalf of the defendant, The Alaafin of Oyo, that later earned him the prestigious title of the 'Aare Bamofin of Oyo Kingdom'. The suit was struck out for lack of substance. Alaafin was vindicated in the verdict of Justice Aderemi. Chief MKO Abiola was installed as the 14th Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland on Saturday, 14th of January, 1988. I was quite young at that time, but I was there. 

 List of All the 15 Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland


*Mogaji #Gboyega_Adejumo*
submitted that:
After Alaafin Shango had initially divided Yorubaland into Ekun Otun and Ekun Osi under the headship of Gbonka and Timi, about a thousand years ago, then came Alaafin Ajagbo mogun'leti Ale elemele, 700 hundred years ago who further divided the realm into Four, adding Ekun Ebolo and Ekun Epo, and made The Aare Ona Kakanfo to be the Head, with 3 provisos;

1, THAT NO KAKANFO MUST LIVE IN OYO!
2, THAT NO AARE MUST ATTACK HIS OWN MOTHER'S HOMETOWN OF IWERE-ILE!
3, THAT NO AARE MUST ATTACK ILE-IFE!

Here's the *List of All the 15 Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland* to Date and where they hailed from.
1. *Kokoro Gangan of Iwoye Ketu Benin Republic/Ogun State*
2. *Oyapote of Iwoye Yewa Egbado Ogun state*
3. *Oyabi of Ajase Benin Republic*
4. *Adeta of Jabata Oyo State*
5. *Oku of Gbongan Osun State*
6. *Afonja of Ilorin Kwara state*
7. *Toyeje of Ogbomosho Oyo State*
8. *Edun of Gbogun, Obafemi Owode Ogun State*
9. *Amepo of Abemo Ido Oyo state*
10. *Kurumi of Ijaye Oyo State*
11. *Ojo Aburumaku of Ogbomosho Oyo State*
12. *Latoosa of Ibadan Oyo State*
13. *Ladoke Akintola of Ogbomosho Oyo State*
14. *MKO Abiola of Abeokuta Ogun State*
15. *Gani Adams of Akoko Ondo State*
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