The Oluwo of Iwo in Osun State, Oba Abdulrasheed Adewale Akanbi, has accused the Ooni of Ife, Oba Enitan Adeyeye Ogunwusi, of ordering his bodyguard to push him out of the way during the meeting of the National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria, held in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.
The allegation was contained in a statement by from Oba Akanbi’s palace on Friday.
The statement reads: “The bodyguard of the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, in what seemed to be an errand message, pushed Oluwo at the public gathering of the first-class paramount rulers held at the Presidential Hotel, Port Harcourt, the capital of Rivers State last Tuesday.
“Dignitaries at the event were taken aback by what they considered as a desecration of the crown as the bodyguard of the Ooni pushed a first-class paramount ruler, Oluwo.
“As shown in the pictures, the Ooni was called to make a vote of thanks as the Oluwo was engaging the Minister of Interior, Abdulrahman Dambazau, who came to represent President Muhammadu Buhari.
“While the Ooni was coming to his seat, his security guard descended on the Oluwo and asked him to give way or he would push him. Oluwo tried to plead with him to be patient, but he (bodyguard) resisted. He then pushed the Oluwo.
“The monarch excused himself in order to maintain peace. The Ooni was observing and he felt satisfied with the action of his guard. Oluwo stepped aside and thereafter revisited his conversation with the minister.”
But Ooni Ogunwusi has denied the allegation.
In a statement by his Director of Public Affairs, Moses Olafare, Ogunwusi said: “There was no altercation between Oluwo and anybody at that venue at all.
“Kabiyesi Ooni went to make his speech in his capacity as a co-chairman of the National Council of Traditional Rulers. On his way back to the seat right beside the representative of the President, General Dambazau (retd.), on sighting Oluwo who had come to the high table to take pictures with some dignitaries while the programme was still ongoing, he waited for some minutes to allow Oluwo leave the way to his seat.”