The Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo, and the Olota of Ota, Prof. Abdulkabir Obalanlege, are set to clash over a disputed land in Iju-Atan in the Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government Area of Ogun State.
Following threats by both sides, anxiety has gripped residents of the disputed area which comprises six communities – Ajegunle, Onigbongbo, Ketu Oluyomi, Atan, Kooko and Iju.
Speaking on behalf of Egba, the Alatan of Atan, Oba Olatunji Oluyomi, who was installed by the Alake accused the Olota of Ota and two other monarchs of claiming ownership of the land which he said was not under their prescribed authority.
The Alake representative said the Olota in company with the Onilogbo of Ilogbo, Oba Samuel Ojugbele, and one others had allegedly taken possession of Egba land in the disputed area.
Oba Oluyomi further accused the Olota-in-Council of continuous trespassing despite several court judgments restraining them from the land.
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The monarch explained that the Gbalefa was a portion of Egbaland, claiming that only the Alake, the paramount ruler of Egbaland had prescribed authority on the land based on the history of the community.
He said, “The Olota and his subjects are using land grabbers to take over some of our land. We are trying to check them and this has made us write a series of letters to the government and police to notify them about the invaders.
“We have five judgments that declared that the Olota does not have any power on Gbalefa, but it is as if the Olota, Onilogbo and Oniko are just taking the law into their own hands.
Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo, the Alake of Egbaland remains the prescribed authority of Gbalefa peninsula and its environs based on the historical antecedents of Gbalefa peninsula.
“Both the Ota and Gbalefa districts are under the control of Alake of Egbaland, but both are quite different from each other despite that they are both under the same Ado-Odo/ Ota Local Government.”
He added, “On the prescribed authority, the Alake of Egbaland has successfully installed about 25 Baales and seven chiefs in Gbalefa peninsula without any hindrance.”
When contacted, the Olota of Ota insisted that there was nothing like Gbalefa land, describing it as a “fraud.”
He warned the Alake-in-council to desist from the attempt to take over the land that does not belong to it.
He added that the historical fact did not support the Egba claim.
He said, “I must explain that my subjects will not quarrel over any land that does not belong to them so; if they are allegedly quarrelling with anybody over a piece of land, it means the land belongs to them.
The monarch added, “The security agencies are aware of the development and I want them to caution those causing confusion.”
He challenged the Alake-in-council to produce the judgment that ordered it to take over the Ota land
He said the matter had been appealed and won, urging the security agencies to stop the Egba people from taking over the Ota land to avoid crisis.