History was recorded in Imoru kingdom, Ose Local Government Area of Ondo State on Thursday, as people from all walks of life gathered to witness the turning of the sod of a modern Palace for the ancient community.
The ceremony was performed amidst fanfare and glamour, devoid of any encumbrance.
During the carnival-like event, the Olumoru of Imoru kingdom, Oba Oluwarotimi Obamuwagun, alongside the community leaders laid the foundation of the king’s new palace to the admiration of the Imoru sons and daughters who gathered to witness the historic event.
Hundreds of members of the community who were overwhelmed with joy, joined the monarch to celebrate the milestone being recorded during his reign.
Speaking at the event, the Olumoru of Imoru kingdom, Oba Oluwarotimi Obamuwagun, said he was naturally happy for the turnout of eminent indigenes of the town for the event, a feat he noted had never been recorded since the inception of the kingdom.
According to him: “Our palace is old and currently in a bad shape. So, I decided after my enthronement that I would build another one and I thank the merciful God for helping us to start the modern palace project today. Today, we lay the foundation stone of the main palace.
“There’s no gainsaying that Imoru community is in a hurry for growth and development. It is also racing breathlessly to catch up with the rest of the world in civilization and modernity.
“Therefore, the construction of a modern palace is a very ambitious project, and with God on our side, it will become a reality soon. It shall be the place of abode of all monarchs and our trophy of unity.”
The Nigerian Monitor gathered that the projects on the palace ground are constituted in three phases; (a) main palace, (b) cultural and traditional library that will contain artifacts and history of the kingdom, and (C) a standard hall.
Olumoru, further stated that: “I am therefore using Engr. Funso Kupolokun, former GMD, NNPC, as a point of contact in thanking all sons and daughters of Imoru for their generous donations.
“I also plead that we should continue to donate generously to enable us complete this palace edifice which shall be our trophy of unity, on record time.
“I also appeal to our friends in Ondo State, Nigeria and across the globe to assist us realize this our beautiful dream.
“We shall also set up a hall of fame and hall of recognition for indigenes and non indigenes who assisted us at anytime to get to our Canaan land”.
Speaking on how he brought together the sons and daughters of the land both home and abroad, the monarch attributed it to God’s grace, stressing that he can’t really explain how God has been doing it, but he is sure that it is the Almighty that is behind the scene working, and He is merely using him.
“Today, I am the most supported Oba in the history of Imoru community. I give glory to God,” he stated.
His words: “Most of the ancient structures here are all down and out; educational, social, cultural and even political structures are all down. We’re trying to revive the structures one by one and it’s not going to be an easy task. So, through the instrumentality of God, we’ve started.
“By the time I got to this place as an oba, I knew what it was and I know what it is today. So, I know that He will work wonders. We started by ensuring discipline in this place and we’ve gotten that right. We still have some skeleton of indiscipline but not as bad as it used to be.”
The monarch said the community is working assiduously to have electricity. He stated that it will be extended to the town soon, since they are tiredlessly pursuing it and God is also working with them.
In his speech, one of the illustrious sons of the town, Hon. Olayato Aribo, also appreciated God for making the day a reality.
In his words: “When Kabiyesi was enthroned, prominent indigenes of Imoru were called that we need to have a befitting palace and we all agreed to it. This is the first project in the land and I pray that God will make it a success. With the joint effort of our children both home and abroad towards the success of this project, I can say they have done creditably well.
“Today, I am representing all the children of the soil, both those that are at home and in the foreign land. We are going to lay the foundation of this palace, the palace to be built is going to be one of the best.”
While giving a breakdown of the project, Aribo disclosed that the palace will have 7 rooms, a big kitchen, private siting room, palace hall, 2 dining rooms, a reception, a laundry, a store, a library, a gym room, a study room, a museum for storage of ancient items and artifacts and a big hall.
He, however, revealed that all materials and resources needed for the success of the palace project are already available.
He, then urged all and sundry, including groups and clubs to partake in the donation towards the construction of the palace, saying no amount is too little.
Speaking further, Aribo said: “Any king without a palace is a lesser king, known as Baale in Yoruba Land. This one is coming at the right time in this town and we are happy about it.
The beauty of it is that all sons and daughters of Imoru are contributing towards the building of this palace. We already have all that we need to put this in place, and hopefully before the end of next year, this project would have been completed.”
Also speaking, the Christ Apostolic Church District Council Chairman, Pastor Benjamin Olatoye, who appreciated God for the wonderful thing He has done and for the good thoughts of the people of the land to have a modern place where the head of the community should live, implored everyone to put God first in all things they do, so as not to have any difficulty from begining till end.
He said everyone should believe that God is ready to build a befitting palace for the community and then prayed God will finish the work that has commenced.
While congratulating the Oba and every member of the community for the good work being done, Olatoye, urged everyone to trust, rely and have confidence in God for provision, and not to compromise their faith.
He prayed for peace of mind and longlife for Oba Obamuwagun and all sons and daughters of Imoru kingdom, advising members of the community to be in one accord for the progress of the town.
The Olumoru, Oba Oluwarotimi Obamuwagun, thereafter led the personalities present and community leaders to the foundation laying of the new palace, which was preceded by reading of Bible verses and prayers conducted by Pastor Benjamin Olatoye.
In her comment, Prophetess Helen Bamidele, who represented Imoru sons and daughters in diaspora, appreciated God for making the day a reality.
She then prayed that God almighty in His mercy should help the community to complete the palace in record time.
Chief Adekusibe Obamuwagun and Olori Abosede Obamuwagun also expressed gratitude to God for counting Imoru worthy of the enviable project, adding that the palace will bring unity, joy and progress to the kingdom.
The event was graced by many dignitaries including, Pa Afelumo Eniolorunda, Pastor Joseph Ilesanmi and others.