Residents threaten to scatter planned coronation of "imposed" monarch

Residents of Orile-Ilawo in the Odeda Local Government Area of Ogun State, have threatened to embark on a paralyzing protest at the location of the coronation ceremony of Alexander Macgregor as monarch of the community.

The residents hinted that they would ensure the coronation ceremony did not take place because it is illegal and an alleged imposition by the government against the choice of the people of Orile-Ilawo.

They insisted that Macgregor planning to hold a coronation outside Orile-Ilawo is a strong indication that he is not accepted by the people of the community and he knows he can’t hold it there.

There are digital invitation fliers, flying around on social media of a proposed "grand coronation ceremony" of Macgregor as the Olu of Orile-Ilawo at the cultural center on Abeokuta.

The event, scheduled to hold from August 31 to September 3, would have the grand coronation ceremony taking place at Cultural centre, Abeokuta, a location which is more than 70 kilometers away from Orile Ilawo.

Going through the widely circulated invitation card, it was observed that none of the activities lined up for the event is expected to take place in the community where Macgregor is expected to rule over. 

But, the residents said they would ensure the event does not take place so as to protect the tradition of Orile-Ilawo. 

They lamented that despite several resistance, complaints, and several pending lawsuits before competent courts in Ogun State, the government allegedly imposed Macgregor on them. 

They noted that Macgregor decided to hold his coronation several kilometers away from the community because he has legitimacy challenges and he is not entitled to the throne.

The residents also revealed that in the little time Macgregor spent since imposed and installed as Olu of Orile-Ilawo, he has continued to intimidate and harass them by creating a militia group. A group of boys known to the community as hoodlums have continuously used uniforms and berets purportedly given to them by Alex Macgregor, using dangerous weapons including guns, axes, and machetes to threaten the lives of the people of Orile Ilawo.

These militia groups are also suspected given the uniforms given to them by the purported monarch to be part of the evil perpetrators of kidnapping along Odeda-Poro Town- Olodo axis of Odeda Local government because they come with bikes, wielding guns, machetes, charms several dangerous weapons to threaten the lives of their people. 

They alleged that the militia group is continuously threatening their wives, and children, preventing them from going to their farms or cutting their trees, and planning to take possession of many lands that Macgregor is absolutely not entitled to, on his behalf. They seize their machines and tools and even demand ransom on behalf of Macgregor in the name of the king It should be noted that Macgregor has no village or relation in any of the villages or communities in Orile Ilawo or elsewhere. 

While appealing to Governor Dapo Abiodun to stop the coronation ceremony, the residents stressed that the event could lead to a serious breakdown of law and order in the state. Most especially because the majority of the residents are angry about the continuous affront to their traditions and the laws. 

A resident, Mrs Dorcas Abiola, said “The Ilawo people have truly been subjected to several levels of abuse by a singular family who perhaps believe they own the people. This evil power and control is exerted through all manner of tactics in other to jettison the will of the people of ILAWO for obvious personal aggrandizement and the government needs to investigate and understand this thoroughly. Our people can’t sleep anymore and turn blind eyes”

Another resident, Lanre Okanlawon said “This reckless impunity is possible because of a backing of wealth and it has to be stopped for the sanity of our community. This certainly will not end well if the government of Dapo Abiodun continuously allows this man to perpetuate these acts against residents and refuse to revisit nor stop this injustice meted on our people of Orile Ilawo. 

“We reckon that the so-called monarch is very desperate and struggling to grant legitimacy to his occupation of the stool. However, we need peace restored in Orile ILAWO  by deposing this monarch imposed on us by a few bad eggs we have identified in this last administration of Prince Dapo Abiodun which prevented the warrant chiefs (kingmakers) to perform their statutory role. Orile ILAWO has been noted for its tranquility, peace, enterprise, and orderliness, which all flow from its hallowed traditional institution, the group enthused." Said Abiola Gbadebo.

"These time-tested values were recently ruptured by the interloper role played by some key officials in the last administration, who set aside laid-down rules in the succession procedure towards the appointment of a new Olu of Orile ILAWO, by using the instrumentality of their offices to appoint warrant officers skewed in favor of Macgregor to play the role of kingmakers".

“Our request, again is to plead with Royal Majesties, Alake and Osile of Egbaland, and particularly the government of the day to uphold the truth and not allow the highly exalted stool of Olu of Orile Ilawo to be continually bastardized and desecrated with money. They can’t continue to turn a blind eye or ignore these allegations. We know that posterity will judge us for whatever choice we make and that is why we are choosing what we know and believe is completely right as passed to us by our ancestors."

“Macgregor has also made several attempts to harass community members with police, writing unsubstantiated petitions to virtually every police station to intimidate members of the community who have been resilient in the capacity to approach the courts and seek Justice.”

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