Youths storm palace, chase away Ile-Oluji monarch

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oba's_crownFOR hours, there was pandemonium in Ile-Oluji, Ile-Oluji/Okeigbo Local Government Area of Ondo State on Monday as angry youths stormed the palace of the traditional ruler, Oba Suulade Adedugbe, and chased him out of the town.

Oba Adedugbe, the Jegun of Ile-Oluji, ascended the throne twenty-three years ago.

It was the first time such an action, seen as a sacrilege, was done in the quiet town.

A first class traditional ruler, Adedugbe once presided over the Ondo State Council of Obas.

The youths stormed the palace about 9a.m. They were later joined by commercial motorcyclists (okada) and some elders to chase him out of the town.

His offence: the shifting of the proposed Federal Polytechnic which has been promised to be sited in the community to another town in the Sunshine State.

Adedugbe was later led to the house of one of his senior chiefs in the town, High Chief Oyebade Olaogbebikan Adeoba.

He was also accused of embezzling community fund, hijacking government projects meant for the town and writing of petitions against some indigenes.

While defending the embattled monarch, Adeoba described all the allegations levelled against him as false, unfounded and a blackmail.

He urged the youths to embrace peace.

The youths were seen with placards, such as “Bring back our school, Bad leaders, where is our Federal Poly in Ile-Oluji, Jegun must react to our demand, Federal Poly we need”.

The Area Commander of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), Ondo Area Command, Alhaji Hamzat Ameyi, later arrived in company of police officers to ensure that the protest did not lead to a breakdown of law and order.

One of the youth leaders, Mr. Idowu Akinbobola, declared that the protest, which had no political colouration, was carried out to demonstrate what he described as the rumour concerning the shifting of the proposed Federal Polytechnic to another town.

A woman chief in the community, Chief Martindale Olabanji, described the situation as unfortunate.

Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Wole Ogodo, said the Area Commander had moved to the town to bring the situation under control.

Ogodo added that the governor had been contacted and had moved to douse the tension in the town.

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