By Eric Elezuo
The saying, “who the cap fits, let them wear it” aptly applies to the prolific legal luminary turned traditional ruler, Oba Adedokun Abolarin, the Òràngún of Òkè-Ìlá in Osun State as he receives the degree of honour of Public Administration (Honoris Causa) of the prestigious Leeds City University, Ibadan Oyo State.
According to the letter of award, signed by the School’s Registrar and Secretary to the Council, Mrs. Oyebola Ayeni, Oba Aboderin merited the honour as a result of his “immeasurable support and selfless service to the University since inception, your credentials as a worthy role model to the our students and academic community, your solid credentials in grassroots and urban development and your excellent example of royalty worthy of emulation; not forgetting your philanthropic gestures by way of sponsorship of many indigent students in your community to be educated and lifting your subjects out of poverty with your varied development efforts.”
It is worthy of note that the award of honorary degrees of Lead City University is specially given to people of exceptional merit and character. Consequently, the Oba is eminently qualified to be so honoured. The award will be presented to Oba Abolarin during the University’s 12th Convocation ceremony on Tuesday, November 5, 2019 at the school premises.
Born on September 24, 1958, the Òràngún of Òkè-Ìlá, in Ifedayo Local Government area of Osun State, Oba Adedokun Abolarin hails from the Obasolo Ruling House, one of the three ruling houses among which the title rotates in Òkè-Ìlá.
Oba Adedokun Abolarin, who was installed on December 8, 2006 is reputed as a well educated professional, versed in law. He attended the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife (formerly University of Ife) where he merited a Bachelors of Law degree, a Master’s Degree in International Relations, as well as B.Sc degree in Political Science. At installation, Oba Abolarin chose the title, Aroyinkeye I, which is translated as “one who finds honey to tend the title”.
Until his installation 2006, the new Òràngún of Òkè-Ìlá was a licensed law practitioner with the Supreme Court of Nigeria. He was also the Principal Partner of Dokun Abolarin & Co., a firm of Solicitors and Legal Consultants, which had served as Company Secretary to various corporations among whom are Tell Publications (Publishers of Tell Magazine), Pacific Holdings, Peachtree Communications Ltd, Sportsmark International and Springtime Development Foundation.
A well tutored academic on Nigerian government and politics, the royal father has a wealth of researched and flawlessly written books covering the period 1914 amalgamation to the present. In his writings, he evaluated component elements of federal, regional/state, and local government administration, analyzed Nigerian foreign policy, political parties and pressure groups.
A kind husband to his wives, dedicated father to his biological children and subjects, Oba Aboderin has left nothing to chance in his quest to see that the best happens to his community, bringing his knowledge and experience in life affairs to bear. As a result, his developmental strides have generated thrills and excitement among his people both at home and in the Diaspora as well as those who have cross his path.
An educationist to the core, Oba Abolarin is the Founder of Abolarin College, Oke-Ila-Orangun, Osun State. In his assessment, the school was set up to fight poverty through education and strictly for indigent students of Nigeria. The school has not fallen short in achieving the lofty ideal.
Oba Aboderin is married to many wives and is blessed by a good number of children.
The royal father rules over Òkè-Ìlá Òràngún, a mostly agrarian town of about 35, 000 persons according to the 2005 population census. The people of Òkè-Ìlá Òràngún kingdom speak a distinctive dialect of the Yoruba language called Igbomina (or Ogbonna). Apart from agrarian occupation, the town has a significant number of artisans, traders, hunters of wild game, school-teachers and other worthy professionals.
Òkè-Ìlá Òràngún is famous for the energetic dancing and acrobatic skills of its Elewe, the region’s primary Egungun, a dancing masquerade ensemble representing the ancestors during various traditional festivals. The Egungun Elewe is unique to the Igbomina Yoruba sub-group. There are other less popular but unique and peculiar Egungun in the kingdom.
As the Oba adds yet another meritorious feather to his cap, this is wishing him the best as he functions in the newest capacity.