By Rasheed Abubakar
The Executive Director of Ankor Pointe Integrated, Dr. Saka Adelola Matemilola has emerged the 14th Olowu of Owu Kingdom, a first-class traditional title in Abeokuta North Local Government Area of Ogun State.
Dr. Matemilola, a member of LightHouse Muslim Community, Lekki, Lagos will replace the late Olowu, Oba Adegboyega Dosunmu, who returned to his Creator in December, 2021.
Dr. Matemilola’s appointment as the new Olowu was confirmed today, Monday, July 25, by the Ogun State Governor, Prince Dr. Dapo Abiodun, weeks after he was screened alongside other princes by the former President Olusegun Obasanjo-led kingmakers of the Owu kingdom in Ogun State.
Muslim News findings revealed that the emergence of Dr. Matemilola, who bagged Ph.D. in Applied Mechanics from the prestigious University of Cambridge, UK, will finally put to rest the question of “who becomes the next paramount ruler of the ancient Owu Kingdom.”
Saka, a young, vibrant, dynamic public servant and human capacity developer, hails from Matemilola ruling house in Soke Compound, Owu, Abeokuta.
The new Olowu, a visiting Scholar, Institute of Petroleum Studies (IPS), University of Port Harcourt, could not be reached as at the time of filing this report on Monday.
Those close to him, however, told our correspondents that he is excited about his emergence as the Olowu of Owu, which he has on several public occasions described as a call to service of his beloved kindred and the right step for him to take.
Before his announcement, Dr. Matemilola had contributed immensely to the development of his community, providing water boreholes; monthly feeding allowance to the needy, dedicated financial support for healthcare, donating books, rebuilding of school facilities, and successful construction and continuous maintenance of the Matemilola Heritage building, among others.
Back home in Lagos, Dr. Matemilola has been committed to the growth and wellbeing of the members of his community.
Muslim News reliably gathered that the new Olowu was among the brains behind Lighthouse Mosque scholarship award for 4 (four) members of the community who graduated with First Class from different Universities. They were presented with a cheque of N200,000 each as a way of encouraging academic excellence.
As a devout Muslim, Dr. Matemilola has joined a league of religiously conscious individuals being elected into traditional kingship.
Muslim News can authoritatively confirm that Dr. Matemilola’s emergence as the new Olowu will not affect his belief, as Governor Dapo Abiodun in January 2022 signed into law, the chieftaincy bill stopping the imposition of rituals during the installation and burial of an Oba.
With the new law which was initiated in June 2020 by the Awujale and paramount Ruler of Ijebuland, Oba Sikirulahi Adetona, the new Olowu and other traditional rulers in Ogun State can now be installed without the usual rites and rituals considered antithetical to divine faiths or religious beliefs.
Saka was born on 4th August 1964. He is a member of Section 3 of Otileta Dynasty, which comprises of Oluyalo and Olajisoye families. Section 3 of Otileta Dynasty are descendants of Ìyá Àgbà Bolajoko, the third wife of Oba Olapetiji Asunkungbade Otileta I, who reigned at the Owu homestead from 1405-1437.
Saka is a great-great grandson of Chief Oluyalo, who was made the Omolefon of Owu in 1878. His grandfather was Oba Okanloye OTILETA XXII, who was the last Olowu at Owu homestead before Owu people moved to Abeokuta in 1834, under the leadership of Chief Fehintopoola.
It was Chief Oluyalo who granted permission for the corpse of Oba Okanloye to be exhumed and re-buried in Abeokuta, before Oba Pawu, the son of Chief Fehintopoola, could be crowned in Abeokuta in 1855, eleven years after he was made Omolefon.
In 1890, following the death of Oba Aderinoye, Chief Oluyalo was appointed to the Owu throne in 1891. However, three days to when he was to enter Ipebi (orientation camp), his son Kadejo died. While still in mourning, his second son Olanloye died within 3 months.
Chief Oluyalo was devastated by this sad event and subsequently left Ipebi. He then requested that the Olowu slot be reserved for any of his children in the future. In sympathy with Oluyalo, all 4 ruling houses in Otileta declined to accept the throne of Olowu on that occasion.
As the Olowu throne could not be left unoccupied for too long, in 1893 the kingmakers appointed Adepegba as the Olowu. Adepegba was a descendant of Akinolu, who was a paternal brother of Oba Olowu Otileta.
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