The Oluwo of Iwo, Oba Abdulrasheed Akanbi, has expressed displeasure over comments on some politicians in Osun State which considered them as ‘ajele,’ which means ‘outsiders’ in Yoruba language.
He described them as uncivilized and agents of underdevelopment.
Oba Akanbi said rather than disparage them, Osun State people should celebrate the so-called Ajeles for their exposure and rich experience, which if well applied, will help develop the towns and the state at large.
The traditional ruler said he would love to be described as an Ajele of civilisation and development.
He said this in an interview with reporters on Tuesday at the Free Medical Outreach for Iwo residents by the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate in the Osun State governorship election, Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola.
Oyetola’s campaign is christened ‘Ilerioluwa’. The initiative was undertaken by the Ilerioluwa Free Health Mission.
Over 2,000 residents of Iwo benefited from the project, which began at the weekend in Ejigbo.
The word Ajele had surfaced since the beginning of the state’s election campaign as a derogatory word for candidates that are not ‘home grown.’
Oba Akanbi said the towns, communities and the entire state of Osun need ajeles to bring in development because of their exposure and experience.
He said: “What I heard is that some people are calling some other people ajeles. They said Oluwo is also an ajele. What is ajele? Ajele is somebody who brings civilization to your domain. You can see the free medical services being offered here today. Iwo has lacked civilization because back in the days, we pushed civilization out”.
“That’s why Iwo has not been developed. We want people, even those in the Diaspora to come and better the lot of this country. We are in dire need. Anybody that calls indigenes living outside the town, state or country ajele is uncivilized.
“We want Diasporans to come because of their exposure. Who is actually not an ajele one way or the other? If you study Law in Nigeria, you have to go to Lagos, Abuja or Enugu for your Law school. That’s outside your locality. It then means that everybody is an ajele one way or the other.
“Ajele is about civilization. And this is what we want. We want development. The way to develop is not by sitting down in a local area. We need exposure. As the Oluwo, I’ve brought civilisation to my domain because of my exposure. So, if they call me an ajele, I’m happy to be one.”