Monarch, Muslims at loggerheads over stool of Chief Imam of Apomu in Osun

The Alapomu of Apomu, Oba Kayode Adenekan-Afolabi, and the Muslim community in Apomu are currently at loggerheads over the stool of Chief Imam of the town in Isokan Local Government Area of Osun State.

As gathered, the hullabaloo began after the demise of the immediate past Chief Imam of Apomu. The next in rank to the deceased religious leader, according to sources, that was supposed to take over was not allowed, as a powerful group with the Muslim community in the town rose against the next-in-rank and threw their wait behind another person, who is also in the chieftaincy line of the Chief Imam.

The development reportedly led to a cold war in the Muslim community in the town and it could not be resolved till the recent installation of Oba Adenekan-Afolabi as the Alapomu of Apomu.

The new monarch was said to have taken bold steps by suspending the activities of League of Alfas in Apomuland purportedly to prevent breakdown of law and order, and he later installed Alhaji Abdulrasaq Akinyele as Chief Imam of the town.

The installation, however, sparked faceoff between the monarch and the Muslim community in Apomu, which culminated in a petition written by Muslims in Apomu to the Osun State governor, Alhaji Adegboyega Oyetola, to intervene in the crisis for amicable resolution of the palaver. The Muslims also questioned why the monarch, who is a Christian, would be the one to choose Chief Imam for the town.

The content of the petition was made known to journalists on Tuesday when former Chairman of Muslim Students Society of Nigeria and the chairman, the Imam of Oke Alfa, Apomu, Adeyemo Yahaya, led some Muslims in the town to the secretariat of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Iyaganku, Ibadan, to express their displeasure over the development, saying the town needs quick intervention of the governor to avert bloodshed.

He stated that in spite of the intervention of the League of Imams and Alfas, Osun State Council, led by the chief Imam of Osogboland, Alhaji Musa Animasahun, the Alapomu of Apomu adamantly insisted that he won’t allow the right person to take over.

According to Yahaya, it was universally known that emergence of Chief Imam is promotional, which the next person would know when it is his turn to become a chief Imam, saying: “It is known all over the world that once a Chief Imam dies, his deputy, and known as Naibi takes over from him, while his other followers remain on queue behind the Imam until it is time for them.

“But the story is not the same in our town. It is true that we had issues before now. But the police had settled it for us until the new monarch came around and decided to bring a man, who is not known and installed same as his own Chief Imam.

“The entire Muslims in Apomuland therefore urge the governor of the state, Adegboyega Oyetola, to intervene before the issue goes out of hand. Our people, though peace-loving, won’t allow this matter unchallenged. We appeal to the authorities to take appropriate steps.”
But in a telephone interview with journalists in Ibadan, Oba Adenekan-Afolabi, said kings in Yorubaland own mosques, therefore he has the right to select the right person to lead Muslims in his domain, adding that he had to dissolve all the activities of Alfas in Apomuland to avert bloodshed.

(The Sun)

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