Oba Abdulrasheed Akanbi brings transformation to ancient Iwo kingdom

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Oba Abdulrasheed Akanbi brings transformation to ancient Iwo kingdom

Oba Abdulrasheed Akanbi brings transformation to ancient Iwo kingdom
April 26
10:04 2016

• Ancient Iwo kingdom now called greater Iwo empire
• Changes his title from king to emperor
• Sets up food & clothing bank for the poor

The ancient town of Iwo is seriously undergoing great transformation. In fact, a lot has happened to the town since Oba Abdulrasheed Akanbi became the new Oluwo of Iwo last November.

Apart from the palace wearing a new look with a new palace extension having been built and declared open by the Sultan of Sokoto, the new king has embarked on a few project.

A few days back, the Oluwo of Iwo announced that Iwo in Osun State has attained the status of an empire and should be called “Greater Iwo Empire” henceforth.

Akanbi, says with the new status, the people of Iwo would start enjoying improved welfare. He said, “Looking at what makes an empire, I realised it needs to have 10 to 15 kings. I have in the Greater Iwo Empire over 27 ancient and powerful kings. Some of them have been kings before some major kings in Yoruba land.

“Having an empire in this modern day is not about wars; it is about dreams, aspirations and how to drive towards the goals. Iwo is now ‘Greater Iwo Empire,’ so I am also attaining a new status, which is Emperor of Greater Iwo Empire and that is how I am being addressed now.

“It is a vision, but one that is divine, spiritual and godly. Many things have changed in Iwo now. We have food and clothing banks now, which are big iron boxes like the ones found in Canada and Britain. Food items and old and new clothing are put in the boxes as donations, which are transferred to the sorting centre and distributed to people who need them.

“We will start by feeding anyone who is hungry through our food bank programme at the palace three days a week, starting from Monday. People can walk into the palace to eat a delicious meal once a day. It is limited to three days now because it is a test run; later, it will be available all days of the week.

“We have a new National Open University centre, which we sponsored to have in Iwo. Then we have a state-of-the-art medical equipment costing about N1bn to equip the state hospital. The equipment is on its way to Nigeria from Canada, and the plan is to have a medical facility that is bigger than the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi Araba.

“We are equipping the whole hospital with electrical beds, resuscitating machines, ultrasound machines and so on. It is being done with the support of the Canadian government.

“We are also fixing the about 40km Iwo-Osogbo Road with the support of the Osun State Government.”

In another development, Akanbi urged the Osun State Governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola, to borrow more money to run the state. The monarch told one of our correspondents in Osogbo on Friday that borrowing more money was a “sure” way the state could come out of its current financial crisis.

The Consultant to the Osun State Government on Information, Mr. Sunday Akere, recently put the amount borrowed by Aregbesola administration at N122bn.

The repayment of the debt and others inherited from the previous administration is having a serious impact on the economy of the state, which was paid a paltry N6.23m from a monthly allocation of N2.4bn after deductions were made from the source to service the debt.

But despite this, Oluwo said the state needed to borrow more money to start projects that would generate revenue for it. He said, “Osun State should borrow more money and that is my advice to the governor. We cannot stay at a point like this and be expressing fear.

“The kind of debt Osun State needs is the fund that will be invested in projects which will boost its internally generated revenue. I am not saying we should borrow to provide free meals for pupils and welfare projects.

“We only need to negotiate a long term repayment plan so that repaying it will not be an unbearable burden to us.”
Since Oba Abdulrasheed Adewale Akanbi came in he has embarked on a mission to restore the lost glory of Iwo. Within the few months of his coronation as the new Oluwo of Iwoland, he has proved that his choice was the best for the community.

Immediately Oba Akanbi was installed the 16th Oluwo of Iwoland, he began make the necessary moves towards the development of Iwoland. He has leveraged on his wealth of experience and exposure and this has helped him in a lot. Being a Canadian returnee, this has helped him in attracting dignitaries both home and abroad to the ancient city of Iwo.

His first step Oba took immediately he was installed was to dig about the beginning/history of Iwoland. He posited in one of his speeches that he believe that the past is the key to the future. And for any leader that is desirous of better tomorrow, such must give credence to his source.

This made the Oluwo to begin a thorough investigation into the life and time of Ooni Luwo Gbagida, the first and the last female Ooni of Ife and the mother of Prince Adekola TELU, the progenitor of Iwoland. He went to the extent of sending a delegate to Ife and they came back with a comprehensive report on Ooni Luwo Gbagida. This give all and sundry an insight on the importance of the stool of Oluwo among the Obas in Yoruba land. Oba Adewale started with an all-inclusive rebranding of the Stool of Oluwo.

He embarked on a massive reconstruction of the Oluwo palace to a standard one that can compete with any palace in the country. He has also renovated the tomb of past Oluwo of Iwo. The tomb is now taking a new and befitting look.

The mosque inside the palace has also been renovated. The entire environment of the palace is now looking royal courtesy of the revered monarch.

Oba Akanbi is a bent in uniting the good people of Iwoland regardless of creeds, religion and belief. True development can only be achieved in an atmosphere of peace and this has prompt him to continue the preaching of importance of peace and harmonious living as the only panacea to development. He has been working on bridging the gap between various religion adherents in Iwoland. He has attracted a good number of personalities to Iwo including former president of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo and the Sultan of Sokoto who is doubled as the Ameer of Muslims in Nigeria,Alhaji Abubakar Sa’ad. Top Yoruba monarch like the Ooni of Ife, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, The Onikate of Eketaland, Oba Ademola Saheed, The Osolo of Isolo Kingdom, Oba Kabir Agbabiaka are few of the high rank traditi nal rulers that have visitedthe throne of Oluwo of Iwoland. Oluwo has equally visited a good number of raditional rulers including the palace of Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi and the Alake of Egbaa palace

The Oluwo recently called for the meeting of Traditional Council in Iwoland. This is a meeting of more than 26 traditional rulers in the kingdom. This is aimed at uniting the entire Iwoland and promote mutual respect and understanding among her populace. The meeting was necessary for the progress and development of Iwoland and as well to bring together the three local government that made up Iwo kingdom in social and political front. Oba Adewale Akanbi also endorsed the coronation of two new kings in Iwoalnd. These two traditional rulers are the Onisaara of Feesu, HRH Oba Moshood Alamu Oparonke 1 and the Oloja of Agberire, HRH Oba Oye Alajide Gbadewole.
The revered monarch recently facilitated the distribution of hundreds of helmets to the Okada riders in Iwoland. The distribution of helmets was sponsored by Mr M. Balogun, a Canadian based indigene of Iwoland insupport of Oba Adewale Akanbi lIufemiloye Telu 1. The new Oluwo of Iwo has assured of his commitment to provide and facilitate a good number of employment opportunities for the teeming youths of Iwo. Oba Abdulrasheed also launched a new initiative that aimed at clothing the vulnerable in Iwoland and as well feeding of the less privilege.
A clothing donation bank has been placed at strategic position within the city for collection of used and new clothes and shoes from donors. Oba Adewale Telu 1 has also facilitated the shipping of medical equipment to Iwo. This equipment when eventually installed in our various health facilities, it will help to bring succor to the general masses in terms of assess to good medical facilities.
So far so good, the reign of Oba Akanbi has remained a blessing to all and sundry in Iwoland. The hope of the average indigenes of Iwo is very much high and much is expected from him. The new Iwo is ‘coming alive and the breath of hope is obvious among the populace. May his reign continue to be a blessing to the good people of Iwoland. The best anyone can do is to support different initiatives of Kabiyesi so as to achieve Iwoland of our dream.

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