10 Years On: Celebrating Developmental Strides Of Timi Edeland

  • PublishedMarch 11, 2018

Ten years ago, the current Timi of Edeland, Oba Munirudeen Adesola Lawal, Laminisa I, was installed as a king. Since then, there have been tremendous developments in the land. Kazeem Mohammed reviews the developmental strides of the monarch as he marks tenth year on the throne.

Ede is one of the major ancient towns in Yorubaland, established by an historic warrior. There are two Ede lands: Ede-Ile and the present Ede. Ede Ile was a land belonging to Alaafin of the old Oyo Empire.

In the ancient times, merchants travelling to and fro the old Oyo Empire were always troubled by miscreants, waylaying them to rob them of their belongings and money. Disturbed by this threats and insecurities, the then Alaafin, Sango of Oyo Empire sent one of his powerful lieutenants, Timi Agbale Olofa Ina to protect the merchants from the miscreants by escorting them across the routes to old Oyo Empire. History has it that Olofa Ina stayed under a particular tree known as Igi Ede very close to Awo, where the merchants are usually robbed and when the merchants are coming from Apomu, he would escort them, passing through Igi Ede  and would return to the tree, his chosen haven. The protection from the Olofa Ina gave the merchants sigh of relief.

When some of those merchants were travelling and it was late, they would stay under the Igi Ede with the protection of the Olofa Ina and continue their journey when the day breaks. That was how people started building huts around this tree and from that the name ‘Ede’ was coined.

After the reign of Olofa Ina, another brave lieutenant of the Alaafin Sango, Alapo Tiemi Tiemi was also sent to continue with the job and history has it that from the name “Alapo Tiemi Tiemi under Igi Ede” the title of Timi Ede was coined. He was known to be the first Timi and was very popular with his flaming arrow.

As a warrior, Timi is always known for its flaming arrow and it has used the arrow, coupled with other charms to fight many wars and defeat several opponents. According to the Timi of Edeland in an interview with a National Newspaper (Not Osun Defender), Ede still has those powerful identities of the ancient time, saying, “We still have the samples of the flaming arrows. We also have Opa Oranmiyan, which is the staff of war. Immediately you allow that Opa Oranmiyan to touch the ground, that place would be deserted by people. We still have all these historic mementoes intact here till today”.

However, the current Timi of Edeland, Oba Munirudeen Adesola Lawal was installed on January 16, 2008, with his official coronation held on the 5th March, 2008. He had formerly served in different public quotas, most especially, he had headed various departments as a lecturer, HOD and Dean at the Osun State Polytechnic, Iree where he had served since December 1992.

Since the assumption of office by the monarch 10 years ago, Ede has become an ancient town to reckon with in terms of socio-economic and human development. According to Timi of Edeland, when he ascended the throne, “We had what I cannot call an hotel, because there wasn’t any standard hotel. Few years of my ascension to the throne, Blue Petals Hotel was built in Ede. Similarly, the Western Sun Hotel was also established. There are several other hotels now that have been built in Ede.

“In education, that is the area where I think God has actually answered our prayers. This is due to the fact that when I ascended the throne, there was no single university in Ede, though we had the Federal Polytechnic in Ede, which was sited here during the reign of my predecessor. By that time when my predecessor was on the throne, we were yearning for at least, a university in Edeland but it didn’t come.

“During the reign of my predecessor, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Church, Baba Adeboye came to Ede for a crusade and after the crusade, he approached my predecessor and he told him that he had nothing to give except land that can be used to build church. Later, Pastor Adeboye came back with Redeemed Church delegation, seeking land to establish a university and the king willingly released land to him. But, unfortunately, there were crises because some people felt that the university, being a Christian university should not be sited in Ede, a predominantly Muslim community.

“There was a lot of conflict and that actually led to the establishment of the temporary campus of Redeemer’s University in Mowe, Ogun State. When I came on board, the university had started producing graduates from Mowe. So, I took so many steps and God answered my prayers and by January, 2012, all the management of Redeemer’s University came from Mowe to Ede as its permanent site. By 2014, they moved all the students from all the faculties to Ede. That was how we had Redeemer’s University in our town.

“Also, I was barely three months on the throne when I was approached by Dupe Adeleke Sanni that my son, Dr. Deji Adeleke wanted to establish a university in Ede. We started looking for land and that was how I was able to allocate land to him. That was how we have Adeleke University.

“Another son of Ede, Late Pa Ilori came to me that he wanted to establish a College of Education in Ede. Before that time, he had already established a primary and secondary school in Ede. Similarly, I allocated land to him to establish the college. There are so many private secondary schools that have been established in our community, including Winner’s Secondary School, along Aisu road.

“In terms of financial institutions, we have First Bank, Skye Bank, Wema Bank and Unity Bank. When I came on board, we had only four fuel stations, but, now I cannot count the number of fuel stations that we have in Ede. In a nutshell, there has been impressive social and economic growth in Ede since I ascended the throne”, Oba Adesola Lawal counted.

In celebrating 10 years developmental achievements of the monarch, who the Chairman Central Planning Committee of the celebration, Professor Siyan Oyeweso described as an upright monarch, Ede town is expected to be in celebration mood on Saturday, March 10, when a one-week celebration would be rounded off.

Oyeweso said the 10th Anniversary is worthy of celebration, as “in the 500 years of Ede history, this will be the first time that Laminisa will be ruling in Ede and within 10 years, there have been tremendous development

He said: “It is significant that we celebrate our monarch because he is an upright monarch and when you look at the phenomena development in the last 10 years under him, you will agree with me that we must give kudos to his foresight and his efforts in sustaining peace between Ede and its neighbouring communities”.

Oyeweso who mentioned Redeemer’s University, Adeleke University and Ilori College of Education which have found their feet in Edeland within 10 years of Oba Adesola’s rule, said the impact of these are phenomena and are worthy of celebration.

He also noted that Ede has produced prominent individuals under Oba Adesola Lawal in the legal profession, entertainment industry, education, business, politics and many more, adding that Ede has always been a peacefully town where Muslims and Christians co-exist peacefully unlike many other communities.

According to him, these are pride that must be celebrated, saying at a press conference that the significance of the celebration was to celebrate the development that have come to Edeland since the monarch ascended the throne 10 years ago.

Among the programmes laid down for the celebration, he said, were the Cultural carnival with the monarch on Monday, visit to the neighbouring towns on Tuesday, Special Prayer session for the monarch and the town on Wednesday, installation of chiefs on Thursday and Jumat Service to be followed by the Anniversary lecture with the Emir of Kano, Muhammad Sanusi Lamido as the keynote speaker and Professor Olutayo Adesina, a Professor of History from the University of Ibadan and Secretary Nigeria Academy of Letter as guest lecturer on Friday. The Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi is expected to grace the event. Saturday would be the grand finale where prominent individuals would be honoured with chieftaincy titles and fundraising to the tune of N1 billion for an ultra-modern Timi Palace.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *