Former President, Olusegun Obasanjo yesterday prostrated for the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, the Ojaja II, when he paid homage to him in his palace.
He described Oba Ogunwusi as his father and father of the Yoruba people, saying he was pleased that Ife people did not pick a wrong person to occupy the throne.
Obasanjo won the admiration of those present when, in his agbada, he prostrated for the Ooni.
He prostrated twice: when he arrived the palace and when he was leaving.
He said it was an honour for the Ooni to pay a visit to anybody, advising those Oba Ogunwusi had visited to reciprocate the gesture by supporting him in his effort to bring unity to Yoruba race.
He said those singing ‘Owu Lakokoda’ should stop and not sing it again, especially at the Ooni’s palace, because Ife is the cradle of humanity.
The former president, who expressed support for the unity move by the Ooni of Ife, explained that the move by the Ooni was important for the progress of Yorubaland.
The former president urged the Ooni not to relent in ensuring unity among the Yoruba, adding that Ife remained the source of Yorubaland.
He said: “I commend the role of Ooni in ensuring peace in Yorubaland. Continue what you are doing, especially your unity course. I am happy with the move taken so far.
“It is only a sign of honour for the Ooni to visit anyone. That does not stop Ile-Ife from its position in the history of Yorubaland.”
Obasanjo, who prayed for the progress of Ife and Yorubaland, apologised for not being present at the Ooni’s coronation.
Responding, the Ooni expressed appreciation of the former president’s visit.
The Ooni described Obasanjo as a prominent leader in Africa, saying: “He loves Yoruba culture and had been promoting it.”
The Ooni had been visited by many Yoruba monarchs, including the Alafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, the Awujale of Ijebu-Ode, Oba Sikiru Adetona, to encourage unity in Yorubaland.
Dignitaries present during Obasajo’s visit included Dr Femi Okunnu, Femi Majekodunmi, Chief Oyewole Faseye, Chief Abiola Ogundokun, Ayo Balogun, and a host of others.