After over a century of filling the stool of Ooni, Giesi Ruling House of Moore, Ile- Ife, yesterday said it was ready to produce the next monarch for the town. The last Ooni to emerge from the Giesi Ruling House, Derin Ologbenla, reigned between 1880 and 1894.
Consequently , a journalist, Prince Adesoji Isaac Fadehan, became the first contestant from Giesi Royal Family. Prince Fadehan yesterday signified intention to contest the stool. Fadehan, who is currently the Director General of Osun State Broadcasting Corporation, OSBC, said the stool of Ooni cannot be occupied by an individual who has no right to royalty by birth and lineage.
Addressing a press conference in Osogbo, spokesperson for Giesi Ruling House, Prince Kunle Adelowo, said the rotation of the stool among the Ruling Houses favours the emergence of a prince from Giesi Ruling House.
Adelowo added: “As indicated by government declaration captioned; ‘The Ooni of Ife Chieftaincy Declaration’ reference number CB141/7/1/540 dated 22nd August, 1977, addressed to then Executive Secretary of Oranmiyan Local Government, Ile-Ife, from the office of Military Governor of Oyo State of Nigeria and duly signed by then Secretary to the Military Government and Head of Service, paragraph (a) in the letter states that; ‘the order of rotation among the ruling houses should be as follows: Osinkola, Ogboru, Giesi, Lafogido.
“To buttress our claim, we like to refer to another memorandum released by the Executive Council of Oyo State of Nigeria number OYSGM,(80) 107 dated 16th September, 1980 captioned ‘ Appointment of a new Ooni of Ife, Memorandum by the governor’.
“ Paragraph (1) of the memorandum states that the Ooni of Ife is a category one ruling house chieftaincy in Oranmiyan Local Government area ( which now comprises of Ife Central, Ife East, Ife North and Ife South local government area of Osun State) to which part II of the Chief’s Law, Cap 19 has been applied. It has an approved and registered declaration provided for four ruling houses, the identity of which is as follows: The Osinkola House, Ogboru House, Giesi House and Lafogido House in that order of rotation.
“ We want all and sundry to please note that the Osinkola House produces our father Oba Adesoji Aderemi who ruled for 50 years in Ile-Ife and was immediately succeeded by Oba Okunade Sijuwade from Ogboru House who has just transited to greater glory.
It then follows that the next ruling house to produce the next Ooni of Ife should automatically and normally come from Giesi Ruling House as per the two government approves rotational arrangements sited above.” He added that Giesi Ruling House has resolved to work together in order to ensure the best candidate is produced to fill the stool vacated by Oba Okunade.
“We hereby unequivocally state that the entire members of the family Giesi Ruling House, Moore Ile Ife, are set to produce names of competent and credible candidates that can easily ascend to the exalted throne of Ooni of Ife,’’ he added.