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25 Mar 2017

"Lagos Lagoon Is Hungry And Angry" -Says Ifa Priest

Allwell Chiawolamoke Oji’s tragic death shook the nation to its foundation.

It reverberated across Nigeria with many giving suggestions on why the young doctor, who was widely viewed
as successful by Nigerian standard, did what he
thought was best for him.

There have not been any consensus on the possible cause of the act
since Sunday when the incident happened.
In an attempt to solve the mystery, Saturday
Telegraph team decided to consult the Ifa
priests. But, the journey to one of the Ifa
temples at Morogbo Village via Agbara, a
boundary town divided by a major road that runs
through to Badagry, was as tortuous as it was
interesting.
The temple, however, is very popular among the
inhabitants of the area. Right from the Morogbo junction, every one appears to know where it is located.

Within a few hours that the crew was ushered in, Chief Omo-Oba Olorunwa Ayekonilogbon, the
priest of Ifa deity, sauntered in clad in casual robe; his lieutenants, in more expensive attires, were in circle formation.

Together, they went
through motions of holy ecstasy, chanting incantations.

They muttered seemingly unintelligible, perhaps,
spiritual words and danced to beats of native
drums. Yet, the drummers were not anywhere
near the shrine. As this was going on, visitors
to the temple were being tutored on how to
behave in order not to incur the wrath of the
gods inside the outsized edifice. Women were
ordered to look away from the shrine as it is
forbidden to do otherwise.
Those who came for prayers and spiritual
consultations were asked to remove their
footwear as a condition before stepping into the
holy arena. As the first step preceding the
consultations, those awaiting cleansing were
taken to the inner chamber, where some
invocations were made. Others clapped and
danced to the priest’s tantalizing ditties.
This, according to one of the adherents, was
necessary to appease the gods and ancestors.
The chanting, no doubt, electrified the
atmosphere. “It is everyday process of
supplication here,” the priest said, after
completing what looked like an obligatory ritual
before commencing the business of the day.
Clearing his voice in a manner reminiscent of
Chief Zebrudaya of the famed New Masquerade, Ayekonilogbon, offered a very
lengthy prayer for all around, the nation and its
leaders, and surprisingly to both Christian and Muslim clerics.

“We prayed for everybody here because we
believe Eledumare (God Almighty) created all of
us. We do not discriminate as it is the case
with the Whiteman’s religions,” he told his
guest, with a tone of satisfaction. After due
consultation with the gods and his ancestors,
Ayekonilogbon, declared emphatically that
anything could have caused the death of Oji.
The young medical practitioner had brutally
ended his sojourn on earth on Sunday in an
unnerving manner when he plunged into the
lagoon after he allegedly received a call that no
one could ascertain where it came from.
Many theories and suggestions have been
advanced on what might have been the likely
cause of his action, the most prominent being
depression.
However, the Ifa priest said, such a theory
could just be a smokescreen. To him, that a
bird cried at night and a child died in the
morning could not be wished away as a mere
coincidence.
Traditionally speaking, he said, only two
theories could suffice in this case. “It is either
he was controlled using an African traditional
technique or the lagoon is hungry and angry.
“Considering that it was after Oji received the
call that he took his life in such a cruel manner,
speaks volume. If he was controlled through
African traditional way, no matter how he tried
to evade it, he could still have looked for or
waited to get near water before taking his life.
You also know that our religion believes in
destiny, it could have been his destiny as well.
“Again, if you look at the rate of deaths in the
lagoon in recent time, via suicide mostly, it is
equally possible the water is hungry and an-gry.
What His Royal Highness, Oba Rilwan Akiolu of
Lagos, needs to do now and urgently too, is to
assemble credible traditionalists, I mean Ifa
priests, to find out why the lagoon has suddenly
become angry. All what the Babalawos need do
is get close to the water, take a little for
consultation. Ifa is capable and would surely
reveal why all these things are happening.
Until that is done, we might be chasing
shadows.” Also, Chief Yemi Elebuibon, another
wellknown Ifa priest, spoke in a manner that
suggests that Oji could have been
‘programmed’ (hypnotized) to do what he did.
Eedi, he explained, is a bad omen in Yoruba
land. “It is a great offence for a person to
commit suicide; an abomination. Whoever does
that is considered to have brought dishonor to
his/her family.
“Yet, the traditional belief behind suicide is that
some people do not just commit the act on
their own, but for some mystical interventions.
However, some people could find themselves in
critical and unpleasant situations, and opt for
suicide as the last resort instead of living to
face the problem.
Whenever it happens proper inquiry is set up by
the king or head of the community where it
occurred to find the cause of the problem and
an Ifa priest is mostly called upon to prescribe
atonement to cleanse the city.”
Elebuibon nevertheless agreed that it is possible
for a person to harm himself or herself without
any diabolical undertone. “We live in a world
where we all have personal battles. We tend to
overcome them each time they arise as a result
of our mental strength but sometimes they
conquer us.
When this happens, a person may consider
suicide as his/her last resort,” the priest told
Saturday Telegraph. He said it could be
diagnosed through a session of Ifa consultation.
When a person consults Ifa, according to him,
the past, present and future will be revealed.

“Ifa gives warning about incoming dangers and the priest analyses the root cause of a certain predicament. Signs of hypnotism can range
from change in attitude, manner of speaking and so on and only people close to the person
can discover this.

“However, a person suspected or confirmed to be under hypnotism should seek help
immediately as failure will wreak havoc and may eventually lead to awful death of the
particular person and many others. Without proper spiritual care, sometimes, the
repercussions of some actions can influence a person’s life negatively.

Such a person will begin to act under the control of mystical forces,” Elebuibon added.

The renowned traditionalist also said there is history of suicide in Ifa mythology and that
hypnotism can only be prevented through
constant consultation with Ifa for spiritual fortification.

To Ayekonilogbon, Ifa is a religion, widely
worshiped mostly by the Yorubas in the South
Western part of the country. The 49-year-old
traditionalist hails from Ode-Erinje in Okutipupa,
Ondo State.
He believes that nei- ther Christianity nor Islam
– Nigeria’s two most professed religions is
superior to Ifa. This may be the reason he
wants Ifa to be embraced as a national religion.
Ayekonilogbon says with the deity accepted
Nigerians, corruption and allied vices in the
country will become history.

NewTelegraph

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