The Aboro of Iboro, Abayomi Salako, has threatened to sue the Olu of Imasayi, Luqmon Kuoye, and his people over the naming of a road under construction by the Ogun State Government.
The two communities are neighbors in the Yewa North local government area of the state.
But Salako said the indigenous Imasayi are their tenants, having been given the land they settled on by their Iboro people’s ancestors.
A few days ago, the Iboro community was in turmoil after Mr. Kuoye and his chiefs stated at a press conference that the Igani Okoto-Ayetoro highway, which is being built by the state government, is in Imasayi territory.
PREMIUM TIMES reported that in 2021 some residents attacked the Iboro who went to Imasayi to perform traditional rites on the disputed land.
Addressing reporters on the matter on Wednesday, Salako said there should have been no disputes over the land because “the records are there for everyone to see, unless they want to be biased.”
He continued: “Imasayi doesn’t have a single plot of land on that road, so I wonder how it could be called the Imasayi-Ayetoro road.
“There has been a series of violence between Iboro and Imasayi and I have told your monarch that I will not tolerate violence; anyone who fights will be reprimanded and that’s my own point. There is no reason for it (violence). The government is there to investigate it.
“Let the government get in on the matter, if we don’t agree, we go to court. There is no need to fight, I don’t believe in that, ”he said.
In his message to Mr. Kuoye, whom he described as his brother, Mr. Salako advised his fellow traditional ruler to seek knowledge about the disputed land from his community elders.
“If they have a single plot in that place, let them come out with the proof, I will give them the land. I don’t fight for whatever it is that he doesn’t belong to me, but he himself knows it,” said the Aboro.
Also speaking, Iboro Central Working Committee Chairman Kolajo Owolabi expressed surprise that the Olu of Imasayi reclaimed the road being built.
Mr. Owolabi said that the Iboro Public Health Clinic is situated next to the then Egbado Divisional Council, just opposite the road in question.
“The original boundary attesting to the fact that the Imasayi people are customary tenants on Iboro land is between Iboro and Ibese on the Iniya River along the Abeokuta/Ilaro highway, about six kilometers from the reconstructed Iboro/Ilaro highway. ayetoro
“It is irrational, irritating and provocative to now claim portions of land owned by their usual owner and which, of course, were never assigned to any of their ancestors.”
When our reporter visited the boundary of the disputed road, a signpost erected by the state government described the road as the Imaseyi/Ayetoro road, contrary to the Aboro’s claim that the road is called the Igani Okoto-Ayetoro road.
When asked about the road name conflict, Mr. Owolabi said: “Our investigations revealed that an engineer Deinde Falana, an Imasayi Indian working in the Ogun State Ministry of Public Works, perpetrated the act. road name change. in question to the Imasayi/Ayetoro road, during the administration of Col. Akintonde”.
Mr. Akintonde was the military administrator of Ogun State under the junta of General Sani Abacha.
Calling for a peaceful resolution of the dispute, the Iboro community leader urged the state government to address the boundary issue quickly and “resolve it honestly and sincerely, without any political manipulation.”
When contacted, the Olu of Imasayi said the road has been known as the Imasayi-Ayetoro road since time immemorial, adding that state government reporters usually visit it to comment on the level of work carried out.
“From time immemorial, it has been very clear that that road is the Imasayi-Igan Okoto-Ayetoro road. They have played a lot of politics, requesting that the name Imasayi be removed, but the government said that is what is on the document in the state archive.
“I am not the person who erected the sign there, if they have any issues about it, the proper authority should be contacted,” Kuoye said.