OPINION: The Oyebisi Ilaka I know by Adebayo Adebimpe
“Never test good people, because they are like diamonds. If you hit them too hard they won’t break, but will only slip from your hands”
The above saying has deep meaning to it. Good people don’t make effort to show people that they are good. You just know they are when you meet them. One of such very good people whom God has blessed Oyo town, and I daresay Oyo state with, is Chief Oyebisi Ilaka, the Ladilu of Oyo empire.
A quintessential gentleman who would go to any length, even at personal discomfort, to meet the needs of his fellow man. A trained lawyer and a financial expert, Ilaka is a man of the people, who, though a noble by every standard, chose to be counted among the plebs.
Ilaka’s generosity knows no bounds. Is it the countless number of indigent students from within and outside Oyo town that he has bestowed scholarships ? The numerous hospital bills he has paid ? Houses he has helped to complete within Oyo town ? Cars he has given out ? Let us not mention the businesses that he has helped build for others from his finances. The Oyebisi Ilaka I know enhances life, not terminate it.
Perhaps, he is too good for our clime.
As a successful lawyer based in the United Kingdom, he need not be here. Why would he surly his pristine credibility by joining the murky waters of Nigerian politics if not for the love that he has for his people ? Considering his antecedents, the likes of Ilaka would most likely have turned out as Mayor in a city like London. Rather, he chose to return to his fatherland to contribute his much-needed talents to the development of Nigeria.
It was against this backdrop that everyone was therefore in utter shock when we heard, a few days ago, that the affable Ladilu of Oyo was attacked at the Palace of Alaafin of Oyo where he had gone to honour an invitation, being a chief in the Palace. This revolting development left everyone befuddled as it is well known that Ilaka is not a man given to drama. In fact, it is uncharacteristic of him to engage anybody in loud arguments. According to reports, he was minding issues in the vicinity of the Palace when gunshots were heard. It was gathered that someone had been shot, supposedly by one of his aides who has since owned up.
However, in a most spuriously conspiratorial and highly reprehensible development, which many have termed political, the Ladilu has been held in incarceration for a deed he knows nothing about. The Oyebisi Ilaka who I know is not a violent man. He is compassionate and peace loving. There is absolutely no way he would have authorized any violent act against anybody not to mention his people.
Let those behind this obviously politically-motivated frame-up to bring a good man down not rejoice yet. The Oyebisi Ilaka I know is not and can not be easily broken. Try as they may, it will be practically impossible to keep such a good man down. Nothing will take away the love of Ilaka’s from the hearts of the people of Oyo, and no amount of conspiracy will prevail.
The good book says a righteous man may fall seven times, but he will arise again.
The sun of Ilaka will rise reiteratively through this travail
Adebimpe Adebayo resident of Oyo town.