HIGH CHIEF OLANREWAJU BASHORUN: A MAN WITH MANY FEATHERS IN A SINGLE CAP – AZEEM SALAKO

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Let us make no mistake, the emergence of High Chief Olanrewaju Bashorun as the Seriki of Ota Awori Kingdom was by divine providence. Certainly, he came in, already made, and in the company of his global knowledge, skills, exposure, influence, and wherewithal. He mixed, combined, and rather than behaving according to the vanity of his hyper noble status, he chose the path to harness them in solidifying the revered stool of the Olota of Ota. His unalloyed patriotism made the stool impregnable, above all, he is a gleeful subordinate to the supremacy of our traditional authority, his leader, the Olota of Ota – HRM Oba (Prof) Adeyemi Obalanlege.

Make no further mistake, this piece is not an embellishment aimed to massage opulence, far from it. Most likely, and with the benefit of hindsight, although I couldn’t care less, the write-up will not still suit the desirability of the honoree. An act which in itself signaled and singled out the characters he embodied – humility, simplicity, and humanity. Already, a literary celebration of High Chief O.T.A Bashorun is ripe but the prospectus is not ready for a reason that such prose that will prosecute the magnificence of High Chief Olanrewaju Bashorun, the incumbent bearer of the highly coveted and revered title of Seriki of Ota Awori Kingdom is an equivalent of a doctoral thesis.

Needn’t I say more that the relevance and enormity attached to the title of Seriki in Ota Aworiland surpass the stool of many monarchs in Yoruba land. The appellation; “Seriki Ota bi Oba Ibomi” loosely means; “the title of Seriki in Ota land is equivalent to stools of some monarchs in Yoruba land”, which eulogizes the bearer of the Seriki title in Ota land is a popular vocabulary in the parlance of Yoruba history. The first Seriki in Ota land, Alhaji Shittu Bashorun was highly influential, wealthy, and a political heavyweight especially in the era of Action Group. His name was not only synonymous with the title, it was the same for Ota in the circle of his fellow aristocrats. His clout, rank, and personage had drawn eminent personalities including Chief Obafemi Awolowo to his home in Ota.

Thence, due diligence must be observed, and any text espousing the modern history of Ota Vis a Vis Awori land is adjudged incomplete without revering this title as an essential historical commodity. Another phenomenon is the carriage of the incumbent bearer of the title, his unmatched loyalty to the Olota of Ota, his impeccable support to the stool, his humanitarian works in the Ota community, his selflessness, patriotism, and immense contributions to the development of the Ota community has without any doubt makes his office amongst that of its co-equal, the most visible, and significant in both administrative and strategic governance in the traditional institution in Ota land.

As I have documented it in one of my articles, entitled: “Honorific styles in the Yoruba traditional institution”, I emphasized that it is trite that the Seriki of Ota enjoys the honorific style of being referred to and revered as “Oloye Agba”. Additionally, the title is earned and foregrounded in law, with historical relevance. His eminence High Chief Olanrewaju Bashorun doubles as the Chief of staff to Olota of Ota Oba Professor Abdu Kabir Obalanlege. He is a dependable ally of His Royal Majesty and enjoys his total confidence. I have conceived this bosom relationship as a tautology of history. There are empirical data that validate this fact and I shall vividly explore this in my forthcoming treatise.

I have decided to celebrate this year’s birthday with a conceptualization of his chieftaincy title, its import, significance, and the enormity of its relevance talking the history of Ota land. Many other things about the quintessence of his personality are being reported all over the media.

A total man of totality. The man with many feathers, of many parts, and whose glorious paths remain a mystery to all. High Chief OTA Bashorun cannot be defined. At best, he is described and the description itself is according to one’s face and phase of his benevolence, philanthropism, humanitarian, and mentorship.
On the joyous occasion of his birthday, I wish him everything good. More prosperity. Increasing wealth. Longer life, and absolute protection of God. For him, and his entire household. Amin.

Hip, hip Hurray.

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