Crisis Over Iya Oloja Rocks Ikorodu As Council Chair Insists On Constitutional Power Over Market

Kunle Adelabu

-Traders protest, clamour for Isikalu

-Asiwaju Ikorodu, other eminent personalities intervene

Hon. Wasiu Adeshina, Chairman, Ikorodu LG addressing protesting traders at the council secretariat during the week. With him, Princess Folashade Oba, Vice Chairman, Alhaji Afinni, Secretary to Ikorodu LG, Alhaji Junaid Owokodu, former Chairman IKODASS LG, Mr Oyefusi and other cabinet members

The crisis that has been brewing over the position of Iya Oloja in Ikorodu Central Local Government, erupted during the week as market leaders and members stormed the Ikorodu Local Government Secretariat, to protest over an alleged imposition of a candidate on them by the Council boss, Hon. Wasiu Adeshina.

The protest, which began at the Ikorodu Plaza at Ita Elewa, saw many of the traders carrying placards along the Oriwu Road, Ojogbe and along the TOS Benson Avenue, to the council secretariat where they were attended to by Hon. Adeshina and other officials of the council.

They carried placards with inscriptions: ‘Wasiu Adesina, you are our Chairman, not our King. Do not Divide Ikorodu Into Two’, ‘Do Not Create Division Within Market Men and Women, Our Chairman Wasiu Adesina’, ‘Say No To Imposition of Iyaloja By Chairman Wasiu Adesina’, ‘We Don’t Want Your Girlfriend As Iyaloja, Chairman Wasiu Adesina’, ‘Deaconess Olubusola Accepted; Olubukola Osho rejected’, and ‘The Marketers Have Decided Not On Iya Oloja, Don’t Force Your Candidate On Us, Chairman Wasiu Adesina’ and ‘Chairman, This Is A Warning From All The Marketers In Ikorodu, Sir’.

Some of the market leaders that participated in the protest were: Alhaja Mutiat Abeni Ojulari, Iyaloja, Ayangbure International Market; Chief Jaiyesimi Wasiu, Babaloja General, Ikorodu Central LG; Chief Ahmed Gafaar, Babaloja Gberigbe market; Mr Akorede Ganiu, Majeoba Foodstuff general; Madam Jemilat Awobajo, Iyaloja Eleweomo, Sabo market and Madam Agboworin, Iyaloja Eledie among others.

Alhaji Afinni appealing to the protesting Marley men and women at the Ikorodu LG secretariat

Many of the market leaders that spoke with our reporter during the protest, stated that the Iyaloja General – elect, Deaconess Isikalu, also doubled as the Iyaloja Ikorodu Central LG, and that there is no need for the council to appoint another.

But the Council Chairman, Hon. Adeshina, has insisted that the power to supervise and manage markets is vested on the Local Government Authority by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

On this basis, the Ikorodu LG Council boss said that he has followed the due process in selecting the Iya Oloja for Ikorodu Central Local Government in person of one Mrs Bukola Osho, for confirmation.

Following the death of the former Iya Oloja of Ayangbure (Sabo) International Market and that of Ikorodu Central LG, Alhaja (Chief) Taofeekat Abiodun Allison who was also conferred with the title of the Iyaloja of Ikorodu Division, in July 2023, the Ayangbure of Ikorodu, His Royal Majesty, Oba (Engr.) Kabir Adewale Shotobi, in September, installed Alhaja Mutiat Abeni Ojulari, as the new Iyaloja for Ayangbure International Market, Ikorodu, popularly known and called ‘Sabo’ market.

It was gathered that the selection and the installation of Chief (Mrs) Ojulari had its drama as the Council did not support the intervention of the palace and had to lock up the market but the traditional group, we gathered, forced the market opened for the new Iyaloja to access and for trading activities to go on.


After the emergence of a new Iyaloja for Sabo market,the process began for the selection of Iya Oloja General for the Ikorodu Division, with some of those that vied for the position of the Iya Oloja of Sabo, also contested for the coveted position. .

In all, seven candidates put in for the position, and were first screened by a Committee which had Otunba Ganiyu Olusegun Abiru, former Clerk/Permanent Secretary, Lagos State House Assembly, Alhaji Jimoh Alogba, Baba Oja Ayangbure Market, Comrade Kehinde Okeowo, former NULGE Chairman Ikorodu Local Government, Mr Akeem Rotimi Erogbogbo, Chairman IKODASS and a lady Lawyer, as members.

The team, THE IMPACT gathered, settled for Deaconess Oluwabusola Elizabeth Isikalu, the Chief Executive Officer, Busiq Fabrics. The report of the committee, we also gathered, was asked to be reviewed by another committee of eminent and seasoned administrators which included Senator Adeseye Ogunleye, former Senator and Minister of Works, Alhaji Amid Oduborisha, President, Oriwu Club, Alhaji Babatunde Rotinwa, former Head of Service, Lagos State, Alhaji Alogba, Baba Oja of Ayangbure Market, High Chief Folake Shokunbi, Iyalode Ikorodu and Alhaji Fatai O. Lasisi, former Special Adviser to the Governor Ambode on Taxation and few others.

The Ayangbure of Ikorodu and other eminent personalities confirmed the setting up of the committees at the presentation of certificate to the preferred candidate for the Iya Oloja General for the Ikorodu Division, at the palace in December 2023. At the presentation were other Iyalojas and Babalojas across the other five Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) in Ikorodu Division and other parts of the state.

But while the palace was waiting for the installation date of the Iyaloja General, the market, which the contests for the Iyaloja of Sabo and that of the Division has polarized, became more polarized as the Chairman announced that Mrs Bukola Osho has been presented to him as the Iya Oloja of Ikorodu Central.

It was gathered that Mrs Osho contested and participated in the two processes that produced Alhaja Mutiat Abeni Ojulari, as the new Iyaloja, Ayangbure International Market and Deaconess Busola Isikalu as the Iyaloja General of Ikorodu Division.

Protesting market men and women at the Ita Elewa

The implication of the present development is that the three positions occupied by the late Alhaja Allison, is now divided between three market leaders, but to some of the traders, the Chairman’s position is an affront on the traditional institution which traditionally owns the market which the Local Government now exercises supervisory roles over.

It is on this basis that market leaders and members across markets in Ikorodu, embarked on the protests during the week to the Ikorodu LG Secretariat and the Ayangbure palace.

Protesting market leaders also argued that the Council boss only have four markets out of the 42 across the Ikorodu LG within him that are rooting for his candidate.

However, Hon. Adeshina, in a statement signed on Thursday, stated the Council’s position on the crisis, emphasizing that Forth Schedule of the Constitution empowers the local government regulatory power over markets within which he has acted.

With the Council Chairman were Princess Folashade Olabanji – Oba, Vice Chairman, Ikorodu LG, Hon. Adebowale Adebola, Council Leader, Ikorodu LG, Hon. Omotayo Awolesi, Councilor, Ikorodu LG, Alhaji Afinni, Secretary to the Ikorodu LG, Alhaji Junaid Owokodu, former Chairman, Ikorodu LG, Supervisory Councilors and others

“In reference to the wide agitations and the misinformation making the rounds on the appointment of the Iyaoloja General of Ikorodu Division, I would like to state for the records that the fourth schedule of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended in 1999, is clear on the duties of the Local Government, which include “the consideration and the making of recommendations to the State Commission on Economic Planning or any similar body on the ‘establishment, maintenance, and regulation of slaughter houses, slaughter slabs, markets, motor parks, and public conveniences”.

“This affirms my stance that the supervision of the appointment process of the Iyaoloja General is constitutionally under the purview of the Local Government Secretariat”.

The Chairman alleged that the council was not in any way involved in the process of selecting the Iyaloja for Sabo and that of the Division.

“During the tenure of the former Iyaloja General, late Alhaja Taofikat Allison, there was an existing structure for markets in Ikorodu Local Government”, he said.

“After her demise, our king, Oba Kabir Shotobi, the Ayangbure of Ikorodu, single-handedly selected Mutiat Ojulari as Iyaloja of Sabo Market without following any formal selection procedure. Despite turning down the advisory from the Local Government on the faulty selection process, the king directed his chiefs to break into the Local Government’s office in Sabo Market.

“Moreso, the king set up non-market men and women to screen the candidates for the position of Iyaloja General of Ikorodu Division, without allowing the market men and women across Ikorodu Division to appoint their Iyaloja General nor reference to any Local Governments within the division, to which the committee appointed Busola Isikalu”, he added.

In exercising the power vested in him by the law, Hon. Adeshina said that he directed leaders in 12 markets to produce a candidate for the position of the Iyaloja, and that they produced Mrs Bukola Osho as the preferred candidate.

“It is important to note that Ikorodu Central, like other LCDAs in the division, is entitled to have its own Iya Oloja for the Local Government. It is on this premise that I directed the heads of all the markets within the Local Government during a stakeholders meeting, to select someone who will head the affairs of the market in the Local Government. The market leaders brought Mrs. Bukola Osho to the Local Government Secretariat for confirmation as the Iya Oloja of Ikorodu Central”, Hon. Adeshina said.

“Ikorodu Central houses a number of markets with a well-established structure. Some of these markets and their heads include: Gberigbe Orelade Market – Iyaloja Yusuf Shakirat Mojisola, Igbo-Oluwo Market – Iyaloja Alhaja Nimotallahi Ajetunmobi, Obun-Ale Market – Iyaloja Bunnmi Adenuga, Ajegbayi Market – Iyaloja Muinat Oshodi, Ikeoluwa Market – Iyaloja K. Shittu, Afowoji Market – Iyaloja Nimota Bakare, Sholafun Market – Iyaloja Mrs. Akinlabi, Ejina Market – Iyaloja Sherifat Shodipo, Laketu Market – Iyaloja Mojisola Dallas, Gbodu Market – Iyaloja Monsurat Hazmat, Ebuoso Market – Iyaloja Mojisola Showole and Ladega Market – Iyaloja Alhaja Jemilat Fatuga.

Hon. Adeshina, concluding his statement, stated that the Council will only recognise any candidate that gets the recognition of the Iya Oloja General of Nigeria, Chief (Mrs) Folashade Tinubu – Ojo.

“Since the market has its own well-constituted structure, it is crucial to state that my office would only affirm candidate that is recognised across the division and formally endorsed by the Iyaloja General of Nigeria”

In an attempt to nip the brewing controversies surrounding the selection of Iya Oloja of Ikorodu, a team of eminent personalities in Ikorodu Kingdom, led by Asiwaju (Pharm.) Steve Anifowoshe, the Asiwaju of Ikorodu Kingdom, has taken steps to intervene.

THE IMPACT gathered that the team, which also includes Alhaji Wasiu Olokunola, a former Permanent Secretary in Lagos State, Chief (Mrs) Modupe Ogunsanya, wife of the Aremo of Ikorodu, Chief (Mrs) Elizabeth Odulate, wife of the Olootu Mosene family of Ikorodu among others, visited the Council Chairman on Friday, to discuss how to resolve the crisis and prevent it from degenerating further.

Speaking with Deaconess Isikalu, who said that she was accepted by the generality of market men and women in Ikorodu and also emerged as the preferred winner in the two screening processes, appealed for calm and unity in Ikorodu.

She said that the structure is that all the markets in Ikorodu, are under the Iya Oloja General who, according to her, also doubled as the Iyaloja for the Ikorodu Central LG.

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