Former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, has expressed his strong disapproval of former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s recent actions towards Yoruba traditional rulers during a public event held in Oyo State. In what many describe as a humiliating display, Obasanjo ordered the Obas (traditional rulers) to stand up and sit down, sparking outrage and disappointment from Fani-Kayode and others.
During the commissioning of various projects in Oyo State, former President Obasanjo shocked onlookers by commanding the Obas to first stand up to greet the governor and then, moments later, ordering them to sit down. The manner in which this directive was delivered left many traditional rulers feeling demeaned and disrespected.
Fani-Kayode, not mincing words, expressed his dismay, stating, “I am deeply saddened and utterly mortified by the way in which former President Olusegun Obasanjo lambasted our revered traditional rulers in Oyo state and ‘ordered’ them to ‘stand up’ and ‘sit down’ as if they were children.”
He went on to highlight the stark contrast between Obasanjo’s recent behavior and his past actions, where he showed great respect and humility towards traditional rulers, even prostrating before them during his time as President. Fani-Kayode’s criticism is not only aimed at the former President’s actions but also at the perceived disrespect shown to Yoruba culture and its cherished traditional institutions.
Furthermore, Fani-Kayode drew attention to Obasanjo’s recent political associations, particularly his support for Peter Obi during the last presidential election, which, in his view, has eroded the former President’s standing in the eyes of many.
Fani-Kayode concluded by urging Obasanjo to respect himself and refrain from embarrassing those who still hold affection and respect for him. The incident has raised concerns about the treatment of traditional rulers and the preservation of cultural values in Yoruba land.