Image caption: Chief Imam
Ayilara family’s disclaimer: No cause for alarm – Chief Imam of Ogbomoso
The Chief Imam of Ogbomosoland, Sheikh Teliat Yunus Olusina Ayilara has reacted to a trending letter disclaiming he is from the Ayilara family of Oke-Agbede, Ogbomoso where he claims to have hailed from.
Ayilara family is one of the recognized families that fills the vacancy in the Chief Imam position in Ogbomoso and is the turn of the family to produce the occupant.
Following the transition of the last holder of the exalted position Sheikh Asafa Sanusi in 2021, Sheikh Yunus Telia Olusina Ayilara was turbaned as new Chief Imam.
However, not long after his ascension crisis erupted as a section of the Ayilara family came out to say he’s not a true born of the family accusing him of usurpation of the position and as such wanted him removed.
They wrote series of petitions to Islamic leaders and groups and the Soun-in-Council presently headed by Areago of Ogbomosoland, High Chief Sobalaje Otolorin, the Soun of Ogbomosoland, Oba Oladunni Oyewumi Ajagungbade III, who saw to his turbaning having joined his ancestors by the time the problem started.The Soun-in-Council consequently directed him to “step aside” as the Chief Imam, pending the time the matter would be resolved by which he would be barred from leading the Friday Jumat prayer any longer but he swiftly secured a court injunction restraining the instruction of the Soun-in-Council from taking effect.
He thus continued to serve in the capacity, though amid hullabaloos as opposition against him swelled, from Muslim faithful who aren’t even from the Ayilara family. But he persisted in functioning as Grand Chief Imam.
At certain points security agent waded in such as when about two hundred alfas were invited by the police and when some persons in the Ayilara family including a 78 year old man said to be the Mogaji were arrested at the Ogbomoso Central Mosque Oja’gbo on the allegation of trying to foment trouble targeted at the Chief Imam. The suspects were subsequently whisked to Oyo State Police Command headquarters in Ibadan.
During the period a group Ogbomoso Muslim Justice Forum (OMJF) headed by Alhaji Muhammed Taofeeq Lobanika was founded and this group continued to champion the cause of “justice” proclaiming that Shiekh Teliat Ayilara be removed.
But when it’s believed the matter is settling down, the Ayilara family has issued a petition again insisting he is not of their family and that he should be dislodged.
In the latest petition which has gone viral, and on a letterhead captioned, “Ayilara Descendant Family, Ogbomoso Nigeria,” addressed to the League of Imams and Alfas, Ogbomosoland, signed by Alhaji Yekeen Akanji (Baale), Mustapha Daudu (Chairman) and Musliu Fasansi (Secretary), and titled, “Disclamaint Of Mr. Teliat Yunus Olushina and Request of Expulsion as the Grand Chief Imam of Ogbomosoland,” his non-association with the family by birth was vehemently emphasized just as the demand for his deposition was stridently underlined.
The letter reads in full, “We humbly and sincerely wish to notify you that we-entire members of Ayilara family Ogbomoso in Nigeria and diaspora unanimously disclaim Telia Yunus Olushina as a bonafide son of Ayilara family. His initial nomination and presentation to the Pakoyi Musulumi, Imam-in-Council and Soun-in-Council was consequent of anti-party of some disgruntled elements amongst our family.
“Mr. Teliat Yunus Olushina has never been a member of Ayilara, Ogbomoso genealogy or ancestral lineage. He gave a lot of false contradictory historical background of himself. Therefore, Mr. Teliat Yunus Olushina has no birth right claim to any member of Ayilara family whose turn its His to present current Grand Chief Imam of Ogbomosoland.
“The entire Ayilara Ogbomosoland family members in Nigeria and Diaspora pray for immediate disposition of Mr. Teliat Yunus Olushina as Grand Chief Imam of Ogbomosoland and in his stead, the Ayilara family will present a bonafide and non-controversial candidate to the position of the Grand Chief Imam of Ogbomosoland.
“Thank you immensely and anticipation of an urgent consideration of Ayilara collective.”
However, in his reaction when ogbomosoinsightonline.com called him on phone, the personal assistant to the Chief Imam, simply identified as RK Teliat, admitting though the office of the Chief Imam had also seen the trending letter expressed confidence there was no cause for alarm.
Asked if the matter was not yet resolved he had submitted, “Well, the matter has been resolved, but after an issue is resolved you know there will still be areas to be straightened out, I want to believe a number of people who are still disgruntled are the ones fanning ember of discord. Nonetheless, we press on with our duty.”
Responding to an interjection by Ogbomoso Insight “So, there is no cause for alarm,” the PA responded in the affirmative “No, there is no cause for alarm. We have attended a programme this morning, with the Grand Chief Imam in attendance.”