Kabba was recently agog with fanfare following the installation of its paramount ruler.
The ancient town of Kabba in Kabba-Bunu Local Government Area of Kogi State was agog recently as His Royal Majesty, Oba Solomon Oladele Owoniyi, Obaro Otitoleke Oweyomade I was presented staff of office and coronated as the 44th Obaro of Kabba.
The Kabba Township Stadium, venue of the coronation ceremony was filled to capacity as top government functionaries, traditional rulers, people of Okunland, friends and well-wishers of the Oba all trooped out to witness the historic and epoch-making event.
Kogi State Governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello had in July 2018 approved the appointment of Oba Solomon Oladele Owoniyi to fill the vacuum created by the former Obaro of Kabba, Oba Michael Olobayo who joined his ancestors in 2016.
Prior to the presentation of staff of office and coronation ceremony proper, various cultural troupes and dancers from within and outside the state took to the stage to entertain guests.
Various traditional rulers from within and outside the state who graced the event took their turns to pay homage and felicitate with the new Obaro.
Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello while presenting the staff of office to the new Obaro, urged him to use his position to galvanise peace, unity and development for Kabba and Okunland as a whole. He noted that the appointment followed all due processes and customs of the Kabba people.
According to him, the appointment took into consideration respects for the existing rotational arrangement amongst the Kabba, Odolu and Katu Ruling Houses in Kabba Kingdom and adherence to existing laws guiding the selection of an Obaro of Kabba – Edict No. 12 of 1995 titled “Obaro of Kabba, Filling of Chieftaincy vacancies and Guidelines for the Rotation of Ololu Titles” and conformed with the choice of the Kabba kingmakers.
“The joy, happiness and peace in the town since the appointment of the Obaro is an indication that we got the processes right and that we made the right choice.
The governor urged the people of Kabba and Okunland to give their supports to the new Obaro to enable him enjoy a peaceful reign, adding they can be no development and progress in the absence of peace.
Turning to the monarch, he urged him to resist every temptation to politicise his exalted office or to use the ancestral stool of his fathers as a tool for oppression.
He said that his administration holds the people of Okunland in high esteem and had embarked on number of projects to make life meaningful for them.
The new Obaro commended Governor Bello for the honour done not just to him as a person but the entire people of Okunland.
The Obaro, HRM Oba Solomon Dele Owoniyi, Obaro Otitoleke Oweyomade I, Obaro of Kabba, who is Chairman, Okun Area Traditional Council, was born on January 1, 1957 into the family of Mr and Mrs Timothy Owoniyi in Ile-Ife in the present day Osun State.
He started his Primary School Education there in 1964 and later moved to Saint Andrew’s Primary School, Egbeda, Kabba, Kogi State in 1966 where he got his first School Leaving Certificate in 1970.
In 1971, he proceeded to Ijumu Anglican Secondary School, Iyara Kogi State and graduated in 1975.
In the same year, he got admitted into the Jos Campus of the then University of Ibadan for his preliminary studies.
In 1976, as result of changes in the institution he and many other undergraduate students were moved to Ibadan, the mother campus where he graduated with a degree in History in 1979.
During his undergraduate days, he served as National President of Kabba Students’ Union in 1978. He participated in the one year compulsory National Youth Service Scheme (NYSC) in Niger State.
Immediately after his service due to his diligence and hard work, he got employed as a News Editor with the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA).
After a meritorious service with NTA, he got another employment opportunity with the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) in 1988 and retired in 2015 as a Deputy Comptroller.