As Owu people in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital prepare to elect the 14th Olowu, the kingmakers to perform the traditional duties have been unveiled.
The 13th Olowu of Owu-Abeokuta, Oba Adegboyega Olusanya Dosunmu, Amororo II, joined his ancestors in December last year after a colossus reign of 16 years.
Oba Dosunmu hailed from the Amororo Ruling House, one of the six royal houses in Owu-Abeokuta. Other ruling houses are Otileta, Ayoloye, Akinjobi, Akinoso and Lagbedu.
The next ruling house to produce Oba Dosunmu’s successor, according to available records is the Otileta royal, which produced the first Olowu in Abeokuta, Oba Pawu in 1855
The 1957 Chieftaincy Declaration Law in the state has charged the kingmakers, who are from certain Owu compounds with the selection responsibilities.
Among the recognised Owu kingmakers are the Akogun, who is the chairman, Obamaja, Orunto, Oyega, Olosin, Osupori, Omolasin.
However, warrant chief or chiefs may be appointed as deemed fit by the government in place of any kingmaker if there is any vacuum.
Such an appointment by government usually happens during an interregnum, as only a sitting Olowu is traditionally empowered to install a kingmaker.
Already, five candidates from different families of the next ruling house, Otileta are already jostling for the converted throne.
Among them are Prince Dr. Saka Adeola Matemilola, an Applied Mathematics and PhD holder from the Cambridge University, United Kingdom and Prince Niyi Adejumo Olatidoye, a retired Permanent Secretary in Ogun State
Others are Adeyinka Abolade, an Alumni of the premier university, University of Ibadan Dr. Kazeem Olanrewaju Babatunde Bakinson, current Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Institute of Town Planning, NITP, Lagos and Adeyinka Oluyemi Abolade.
Also in the race are Dr. Kazeem Olarewaju Babatunde Bakinson, a notable Town Planner and current Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Institute of Town Planning, NITP, Lagos chapter
There are also Princes Adeboyejo Kabir Gbademu, Sunday Adebayo Adelanwa, Owookade Adesina, Semiyu Adelani among others are also eyeing the exalted position.
Meanwhile, the Secretary to the Abeokuta North Local Government, Hon. Odusiji Kabiru Ayinla has directed the head of Otileta family to ensure early selection of a new Olowu.