By Emmanuel Adigwe and Ayodele Oluwafemi
The sight of Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the National Leader of the All Progressive Congress sitting and exchanging pleasantries with the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi has set tongues wagging, on the social media.
The incident happened at the coronation of the Oniru of Iruland, Oba Omogbolahan Lawal.
In Yoruba culture, traditional rulers are highly respected and greeting them entails prostrating for men and kneeling for women.
The video and pictures of the incident, in which the Ooni of Ife entered the coronation venue after the event had started and Tinubu appeared to have remained on his seat while exchanging greetings with the monarch, has led to different interpretations.
Reacting to the incident, former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode tweeted that Tinubu’s action was insulting to the people of Ife and the Yoruba at large.
Fani-Kayode tweeted: “That the Asiwaju of Bourdillon refused to stand up to greet the Ooni of Ife speaks volumes. This was not only deeply insulting to every Ife & indeed son & daughter of Odua but it is also a crying shame. Would a northern pol. leader refuse to stand up for his traditional ruler?”
Some of those who commented on the incident criticized Tinubu for what they perceived as total disregard to the Yoruba culture and the authority of the Ooni of Ife.
Some others, however, took to defence of the APC national leader, arguing that he was already on his seat before the Ooni of Ife came in.
Others also said that the Ooni by going to every event he is invited is also devaluing the throne.
Truth is bitter@fasasiAkeem7 wrote: “The present ooni has been disgracing & desecrating that stool if he respect himself 1000 of Tinubu can’t dare him. But Tinubu’s arrogance this day is becoming unbecoming.”
Akorede@Akorede04 wrote: “I think u need to work on ur sense of reasoning. Ooni is the first traditional ruler in Yoruba land. Tinubu refusing to stand up to greet Ooni is a total disrespect to the whole of Yoruba land. Even high rank Kings stand to greet Ooni. Forget sentiment, Tinubu is a disgrace on this.”
Prince Adedoyin Alatishe@AAAlatishe wrote: “Yoruba obas need to do better and restore respect to the royal institution. Saheed elegushi has no right to be seated while Ooni of Ife was making his way to the high table. Same as Asiwaju and the new oniru. Its very wrong and disrespectful.”
Demola Fowosere@Fowosere_Jnr wrote: “I miss the late OONI OF IFE. SIJUWADE ERI OGUN.”
Ayekooto@DeeOneAyekooto wrote: “His Aides have become VP, Minsters, Governors, Lawmakers etc. See these two Kings, they were also his aides. TINUBU is blessed by GOD. Only God’s enemies hate GOD’s WORK.”
akinrinsola@Z__Chameleon wrote: “Tinubu is too old to be modern day anything.”
Ayekooto@DeeOneAyekooto wrote: “TINUBU d Man who supported GMB without receiving ANY PERSONAL BENEFIT. Not appointment, not contracts, not oil, not even National Honours. U may say he nominated ppl into government, how many politicians do that, they’ll rather be there personally, abi no be this game of treachery?”
J Ndubueze Ejiofor@joeejio4 wrote: “So u r expecting Tinubu to prostrate to him like Davido so what? Let me tell you live and direct oni of ife did not stand up to great Tinubu. He entered in the middle of the program and he was going to have his seat beside Tinubu. Don’t be mislead my FFK article please.”
LEGENDARY PAPASAM@FirstPapasam wrote: “What was the Ooni supposed to do to show he has problems with it? The Ooni was just wiser and more mature at the said event. This your comment is wrong.”
Felixaeome@felixaeome wrote: “The picture below is utter disrespect to the king nd ife kingdom plus yoruba nation. Awolowo never sat down when a king was upstanding. Can Asiwaju do same to Awujale or Oba of Benin? Ooni sef stop going uppandan.”