Appointment of Ogbomoso Chief Imam purely Soun’s discretion – Commttee 

The Aare Musulumi of Ogbomosoland, Alhaji Abdulganiyu Atanda Owodunni, has said the appointment of the Chief Imam of Ogbomoso is purely the discretion of the Soun of Ogbomosho. 

Alhaji Owodunni made this known while addressing a press conference on Saturday on behalf of the Ogbomoso Committee on Islamic Affairs.

The Aare, who led other members of the committee to the conference, condemned the imbroglio in the Muslim community, saying the raging insubordination to constituted authorities by certain individuals, which brought the community to near anarchy must stop forthwith.

While giving a brief history of the authority of the Soun of Ogbomosoland on Islamic matters, he pointed out that “the present Ogbomsoo Central Mosque at Oja’gbo was excised out of the palace premises.”

According to him, “The first officially appointed Chief Imam for the Ogbomoso Muslim community was Imam Muhammed Nafiu from Abogunde compound, Laka area, Ogbomoso. The then Soun who was not even a Muslim appointed him. Imam Muhammed Nafiu led the Muslim congregation between 1818 and 1870,” he said. 

He explained that since that precedent, “the Soun picks the Imam from any Muslim compound of his choice.

“We are hereby calling on the whole world to discountenance all these false accusations against His Imperial Majesty, the Soun of Ogbomosoland, Oba Ghandi Afolabi Olaoye Orumogege III. We shall not allow some extraneous forces to cause disaffection amongst us in Ogbomoso.” 

Owodunni maintained that, “In every family compound in Ogbomoso, there are Christians, Muslims and traditional worshippers enjoying strong bonds, and bonded in harmonious relationship that has ensured we never had any division amongst us.

“We intermarry and celebrate every festival together as one united family. Any ruling house in Ogbomosoland whose turn it is to produce a candidate for the throne of Soun can present any candidate of their choice, be it a Christian, Muslim, or traditional worshiper. That is how we are made. But some people are attempting to destroy this foundation of harmony but this will fail.

“Finally, we, the Muslim leaders, who have great stake in the affairs of the Muslim community in Ogbomoso, have taken the pain to explain how the Ogbomoso Central Mosque of Oja’gbo came into being and how it has been administered by the various Souns on the throne at every point in time.

“Our own peculiarity here in Ogbomoso is that the Ogbomoso Central Mosque is an ancestral heritage of the Soun Dynasty as the Kaaba – the Haram in Makkah and the Masjid Anabawy in Medina are the exclusive property of the Saudi Arabia Royal Family. And so the sole authority in the appointment of Chief Imam of Ogbomosoland that will lead the Muslim Ummah is that of the Soun.”