- The Oba of Benin has made a historic first visit to the nation’s capital, Abuja, since his coronation
- The monarch was received by Benin chiefs, prominent sons of Benin- including the APC national chairman, John Oyegun- and well wishers
- The APC national chairman expressed hope that the Oba’s visit would bring peace, hope and change to the country
Omo N'Oba N’Edo Uku Akpolokpolor, the Oba of Benin, made a historic first visit since his coronation to Abuja, the nations’ capital, on Wednesday, November 22, Premium Times reports.
The monarch’s aircraft landed at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport at about 5:05pm; and he was received by Benin traditional chiefs, prominent Benin indigenes and friends.
NAIJ.com gathers that amongst the prominent Benin sons who were on hand to receive the Oba, was John Odigie-Oyegun, National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
According to Oyegun, the monarch’s visit was ‘historic’, as it was his first since he was crowned.
He stated: “The Oba’s visit is bringing peace, hope to the country and change in the nation.
“Everybody here as you can see came to give him a rousing welcome. It is a historic occurrence, our new Oba, a unique Oba with a unique culture.
“We also have a unique president in the person of Muhammadu Buhari with a unique way of doing things. A lot of good things will come out of this visit.”
Also speaking, another prominent Benin son and member of the House of Representatives, Johnson Agbonayinma, said that as a proud indigene of Edo state, he couldn't help but tell his colleagues in the green chamber that he had a 'caring' Oba.
In his words: “There is a saying that if you do not value what you have, somebody else will help you devalue it.
“I value my traditional institution and all I can do is to tell my honourable colleagues, friends of Edo, to let them know that we have a caring King.
“I am happy to see the crowd that came to receive the Oba; I ask God to bless them and the chiefs as well.
“This is to tell you that our Oba is one who deserves all the respect accorded to him without being sentimental.
“It is a glorious day as his mission is to also show appreciation to all those who supported him during his coronation. It will be an honour to understand that we have an Oba who cares about the unity of the country.”
The Oba’s visit was also described by the president of the Benin community in Abuja, Dickson Omoregie, as a joyful occasion.
He stated: “That is why he is starting here in Abuja to visit his children, we are delighted to receive him. When your daddy comes to visit you, you are so excited; It is a joyful day for us Edo people in Abuja.’’
Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari Thursday, November 23, expressed delight with the stabilising roles that the Eweka Dynasty of Benin Kingdom had been playing in the affairs of the country.
Speaking while receiving the Oba of Benin, His Royal Majesty, Omo N’Oba Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba Ewuare II at the State House, the President said that Nigerians have reasons to be proud of the stabilising roles Benin chiefs had played right from the colonial era to the current period, not only in the Delta region but the entire country.
In a statement issued by his senior special assistant on media and publicity, Garba Shehu, President Buhari singled out the role of the immediate past Oba of Benin, Oba Erediauwa I, whom he described as his “back bone of support” when he was Federal Commissioner of Petroleum Resources and the late Oba was a Federal Permanent Secretary.
“I cannot hold back my emotions, talking about my relationship with your predecessor. After General Murtala Mohammed was assassinated, I was moved from the North-East as governor to Ministry of Petroleum. Your father was then Permanent Secretary. My relationship with him was very strong. I have lost count of the number of visits to his palace as Oba,” he said.
President Buhari praised the late Oba for “stabilising that part of the country because of his firmness. I must also commend the immediate past governor, Adams Oshiomhole for stabilising Edo State.”
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com previously reported that President Muhammadu Buhari made a two-day working visit to Edo state with a visit to the palace of the Oba of Benin, Omo N'Oba N'Edo Uku Akpolokpolo Ewuare II.
The visit was geared towards commissioning some of the projects of then-Governor Adams Oshiomhole.
The president commissioned the New Central Hospital, and the Upper Siluko Road, in Benin City.
Edo traders lament about President Buhari - on NAIJ.com TV: