OJO ABURUMAKU: DOUBLED AS “BAALE OF OGBOMOSO” AND “AARE ONA KAKANFO” OF YORUBALAND
Written By Johnson Okunade
Ojo Olannipa “Aburumaku” after the death of Baale Odunaro in 1865 became the 14th Baale (king) of Ogbomoso and at the same time the 11th Aare Onakakanfo (Generalissimo or Field Marshal) of Yorubaland.
Thus, Ojo Aburumaku became the third Aare Ona Kakanfo produced by Ogbomoso in Yoruba history. According to Ayo Adelowo, of the 15 Aare Onakakanfos to date, 7 are of Ogbomoso extraction. Of the old and new Oyo Empire which produced 12 Aare Ona Kakanfo (6) hailed from Ogbomoso.
Nicknamed “Aburumaku” because of his wickedness and stubbornness which he exhibited from the youth. He was commonly referred to as Ojo Aburumaku in his time.
Ojo Aburumaku’s father, Toyeje Akanni nicknamed “Alebiosu” meaning one who shines like the moon is an important and significant figure because his ascension to the throne of Ogbomoso had far reaching results and effects not only on the course of Ogbomoso history but indeed on Oyo empire as a whole.
Toyeje Akanni (1808-1831) also doubled as the 9th Baale (king) of Ogbomoso and 7th Aare OnaKakanfo (Generalissimo) of Yorubaland. He was Otun (Deputy) Aare Kakanfo to Afonja before becoming Baale of Ogbomoso.
He succeeded Afonja of Ilorin at a point when the peace and order that reigned during the kingship of Alaafin Abiodun was no more. Toyeje Akanni was exceptionally brave; he took part in war campaigns and tried all his best to bring back order to Old Oyo Empire (Oyo-Ile).
On the other hand, Ojo Olannipa (Aburumaku) was not like his father, Toyeje Akanni (Alebiosu). In the words of Professor Oyerinde N.D., Ojo Aburumaku was determined and desperate, for instance, to get rich rightly or wrongly.
In another instance, Chief Oyebisi Okewuyi also mentioned how Ojo Olannipa Aburumaku used contact and connection to become Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland from Alaafin Adelu without going to any war or having any reputation that qualifies him for the post.
As the Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, Ojo Aburumaku had no war to fight. Just to fight his enemies, Ojo Olannipa “Aburumaku” fomented a civil war in his native Ogbomoso which he then had a good sport of putting down with severity.
As an Oba and Aare, Ojo Olannipa Aburumaku’s greatest achievement was that in 1860s, following Ibadan’s pattern of Warlord, he instituted the title of Balogun and added it to the kingmakers.
According to Professor N.D. Oyerinde in his book, Ìwé Ìtàn Ògbómòsó [A History of Ogbomoso]. Ojo Aburumaku installed Odufopo as the first Balogun of Ogbomoso, Ayoola Ajibowoje became the first Otun Balogun, Ilori became Osi and Popoola was made Bada.
In his days, Ojo Aburumaku did as he like with nobody to question his actions. Afterall, he was Aare Onakakanfo (Generalissimo of Field Marshall) of Yorubaland, the Supreme head of the Ikoyi Esos; the 70 military commanders who make the Yoruba warrior caste.
In his days, Ojo Aburumaku was eulogized in the following manner:
Èsó Ìkòyí won kìí gbofà léyìn
Iwájú ni wòn fií gbota
Àgbà Ìkòyí tó gbójó ikú tórèé gbálú
Ìkòyí Èsó, arógun yò
The military commanders doesn’t use there back to receive shot arrows
They face bullets with open chests
Veteran military commander that celebrates expected deaths
The Military Commander that jubilates when he sees war
Ojo Aburumaku died in September 1869. Among the children he left behind include Otunla, Itabiyi, Folarin, Oyeleke and Oyekan.
By the time of Aare Aburu’s death, his son Otunla unilaterally on his own usurped the throne.
- Ogbomoso In The Early Times, Modern Era And In Today’s Contemporary World – Written By Chief Oyebisi Okewuyi (JP)
- Ogbomoso, The Journey So Far – Written By Ayo Adelowo
- Ìwé Ìtàn Ògbómòsó [A History of Ogbomoso] – Written By Professor N.D Oyerinde
Written By Johnson Okunade
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