Interview, Society

Subomi Balogun’s Revelation

Veteran banker and founder of First City Monument Group, Otunba Subomi Balogun has made some revelations.

The octogenarian who is the Head of Princes and Princesses in Ijebuland, speaking at the New Year Prayer and Thanksgiving Service, an annual event in his palatial house in Ijebu, Ogun State, said that;

“Why I get so much involved is not only because I am the President of the Laity. I also come from some of the most illustrious chieftaincy houses. I happen to be the Olori Omo Oba or the Head of Princes and Princesses in Ijebuland. Because of these pre-eminent positions, I get dragged in or I voluntarily offer myself to participate.”

“Thanking God annually is very personal. When I look back and see what the Lord has done for me among myriads of Ijebu people, I think I can just thank Him. I am opportune and I always want to show my appreciation to God. That is why I am very much involved with the annual prayers.”

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“It is not only the Christians that attend the event. My Muslim brothers and sisters are always invited, too. The Ijebu society is very unique. All of us are intertwined. There is no one who is a Christian and does not have a Muslim relation. And there is no Muslim that does not have a Christian relation.”

“When my mother was alive, she was the Iyasuna or the most senior woman among the Muslims. So, we don’t know any difference in Ijebu society. We are all together. There is hardly any Ijebu family you will trace and you won’t find a combination of Christians and Muslims. I am proud to be one of them.”

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“Being originally a part of the Ijebu royalty and a distinguished descendant of the legendary Ijebu king, Oba Tuwase, the roles were either hereditary or bestowed upon me by my people. Oba Tuwase was the Ijebu king who signed a treaty with the Queen of England to allow the British to enter Ijebuland in 1892. He also allowed the preaching of the Christian Gospel in Ijebuland and donated the land on which the first church in Ijebuland was built.”

“He also gave the land on which the Central Mosque was built. He occupies a cardinal position in the history of Ijebuland. And I happen to be one of his distinguished descendants. My mother happened to be a great-grandchild of that king. More than this, I have a very strong lineage to most of the important chieftaincy houses in Ijebuland.”

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“I cannot be in any retirement. Through the grace of God, I still have my faculties around me. At 85 years, not many people are as mentally alert as younger Nigerians. Certainly not many people of my age can walk around without using a walking stick. I am still agile. I am not retired. Although it is true that I don’t go to my office every now and then, whenever I have the opportunity, I just pop in to see what is going on.”

“There are certain things that I do, which make people to wonder. For example, I still remember things that happened to me about 70 years ago in detail. I still write long theses and I still prepare speeches and do many things.”