State creation: Oluwole Oke’s irreconcilable and illogical postulation

State creation: Oluwole Oke’s irreconcilable and illogical postulation




News media were awash with a legislative proposal on creation of three new states in the south west geo-political zone by Hon Oluwole Oke representing Obokun/Oriade federal constituency in Osun state.


Hon Oke who is the Chairman House Committee on Judiciary made case for the creation of Ife-Ijesa state from Osun, Ijebu state from Ogun and Oke-Ogun state from the present Oyo. As much as the proposal, aimed at keying into the envisaged constitutional amendment plan of the 10th assembly as enunciated by the Speaker of the House of Representatives Abass Tajudeen in November, is laudable as it meets the aspiration of many people, Oke’s structuring poster lacks correlation with the reality on ground.


He obviously is ignorant of local and sectional idiosyncracies, as evident in his alleged proposed grouping. He should have just recommended the states deserving split, sticking his neck out to name the proposed states and suggesting the capital city and constituent parts detracts from what could have been termed a noble attempt.


Of particular interest is his presumption as it relates to Oyo state. He sat in his Obokun constituency and drew a pattern for Oyo state. He shot himself in the leg by his awkward structuring formula. To my knowledge, four new states have been demanded by various sections in Oyo state in the past – Oba state, New Oyo state, Oke-Ogun state and Ibadan state. Oba (from Oba river), is a dream conceived in Ogbomoso in the same version as Osun and Niger states – Niger and Osun are also names of rivers, incidentally the three once lived as beautiful women married to the legendary King Sango!


The Ibadan people are eyeing Ibadan state on the basis of the city’s agelong role as capital of Yoruba country. Their aspiration particularly is hinged on the fact that the two other cities which were capitals of the old regions, Kaduna and Enugu, have long transformed into autonomous states – Kaduna and Enugu states.


However, the strange postulation by Oke flies in the face of reality in the case of the Pacesetter state. It lacks empirical argument. It’s illogical lumping the two local governments of Ogbomoso North and South, with this so-called Oke-Ogun state, leaving the other three out. Stranger is cutting off Oriire local government, which has traditionally been part of Oyo North senatorial district along with the other two. Oriire even shares boundaries with Oke-Ogun area standing between Ogbomoso metropolis and Oke-Ogun but he has excised the council area. Oyo North senatorial district boasts 13 local governments and he is now recommending it to be a state with 12. It’s strange.


To me, Ibadan state should be created while others continue as Oyo state. Ibarapa by its location can cast its lot with Ibadan. The Ogbomoso five local governments cannot be split and put into different states, both on historical and legal bases. Pre-Nigeria, the communities constituting the five were under the suzerainty of Ogbomoso and a land dispute between Ogbomoso and Oyo ended with the Supreme Court affirming the disputed land belongs to Ogbomoso. How will one Mr. Oke now advance an illogical arrangement?


Meanwhile, creation of states is remote under a civilian administration, nonetheless, his proposal as illogical and irreconcilable as it’s should not be overlooked. Nobody knows the future, if the idea Mr. Oke pushes out gets ingrained in the consciousness of the people especially those in the corridors of power it may be irreversible when the chips are down.


In the final analysis, Ogbomoso is the best bet as the new capital city of Oyo state in the event Ibadan state is excised. In terms of antecedent, contribution to state and national development, human resources, infrastructures, location, accomodations, facilities, population and whatnot, none comes near her.


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