Oba of Benin wades into OPC leadership crisis

Otunba Wasiu Afolabi addressing Oba Ewuare II

By Jethro Ibileke

The Benin Monarch, His Royal Majesty, Oba Ewuare II, has mediated in the crisis between the warring factional leaders of the Odua Peoples Congress (OPC).

towards resolving the misunderstanding that led to the division of the socio-cultural group.

Aare Prince Osibote and Otunba Wasiu Afolabi, have been at loggerheads over who should lead the socio-cultural organization, following the death of its founding leader, Dr Fredrick Fasheun.

They however arrived at the consensus following mediation by the Benin Monarch who met them separately in his palace in Benin City.

They both expressed appreciation to the Oba for promoting friendliness among the ancient City of Benin and Ile-Ife.

Addressing the Monarch, Osibote said, “We are your subjects and your sons; there is nothing that we can do without Benin, as far as Odua is concerned.

“We are from here and Ile-Ife in Osun State are very important to the organization. Without this, we cannot move forward.”

In his remark, Afolabi who gave a background of how OPC began years ago, said, “I appreciate your comments. We will call the few people that are outside together. We are really glad for your goodwill.

“Next time, we will be here as you have directed. We will make sure that we reach out to all aggrieved members and those who still harbour grudges.”

After listening to the two warring leaders, Oba Ewuare II who called for unity, welfare and cultural values of the people, also cautioned the OPC leaders against mistrust or partisan interests.

While reiterating the need for attitudinal change, the Monarch charged members of the socio-cultural organization to shun partisan politics and form a formidable force to reckon with.

Oba Ewuare also promised to reach out to the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi (Ojájá II), for further talks on the matter.