Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Sunday, installed Oba Abdulwasiu Omogbolahan Lawal, Abisogun II, as the 15th Oniru of Iruland, in Eti-Osa Local Government Area of the state.
Until his recent resignation, Prince Gbolahan Lawal was the Lagos State Commissioner for Agriculture.
Lawal succeeds Late Oba Idowu Abiodun, who passed on in September 2019, at the age of 82.
Speaking at the occasion of the Installation and Presentation of Staff of Office, Sanwo-Olu described traditional rulers as strategic in the society.
He said that the traditional rulers were not only symbols and custodians of traditions and cultures, but also rallying points for all of society; agents of stability and development.
The governor commended Lawal on his emergence as the new Oba, while calling on the people of Iru Kingdom to work with him.
”It is my firm expectation that you will all rally round your new Oba and join hands with him for the growth and progress of Iruland, and of Lagos State.
”Given the pedigree of His Royal Majesty, I have no doubt that his reign will be a progressive one.
”Your Royal Highness, I pledge the full support of the State Government toward the realization of your vision for Iru Kingdom.
”It is heartwarming to see how the Kingdom has grown in leaps and bounds in the last few decades, rising to become one of the economic nerve-centres of Lagos State.
”Our administration will continue to accord this part of the state, like all others, the attention you deserve, in terms of infrastructure, economic empowerment, human capital development, and security,” he said.
According to Sanwo-Olu, there is no doubt that the future of Iru Kingdom continues to be bright and promising.
He said that the ascension of His Royal Majesty, Oba Abdul-Wasiu Omogbolahan Lawal, Abisogun II, marked the start of the next phase of the journey into a bright and promising future.
”I commend the Kingmakers and elders of Iruland as well as the ruling houses for the peace and mutual understanding that have characterized the process that has led to the installation of the new monarch, within a period of less than one year after the demise of the previous Oniru.
”This is a remarkable feat, worthy of commendation and emulation. I enjoin His Royal Majesty to build on this foundation. There is no better way to ascend to this worthy throne than in this atmosphere of goodwill and harmony.
”As the father of all of Iruland, you have an important responsibility to strengthen the existing bonds of unity for the overall development, peace and progress of this historic kingdom,” Sanwo-Olu urged Oba Lawal.
The Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu urged the new monarch to move the Oniru family forward and lead the palace better than he met it.
Akiolu also called on the new Oba to take the education of the people of Iru Kingdom seriously and take heed to the advice of elders.
He urged the newly crowned monarch to be wary of sycophants who were only interested in feathering their nests.
Akiolu also urged Lawal to embark on immediate reconciliation of all aggrieved royal members of Iruland for the progress, unity and peace of the kingdom.
”You must leave Iru kingdom better than you met it and not another way round.
”Your selection is divinely commissioned and you show appreciation to God by ensuring justice and fairness in your dealings with everyone,” the Oba of Lagos said.
In his acceptance speech, Oba Lawal assured the sons and daughters of Iruland that his reign would be an open one, as he would be fair and just to everyone.
He said that he would work together as a formidable force with Prince Ajasa to transform Iruland and Lagos State as a whole.
”I consider it a divine call to succeed the legendary Oba Abiodun Idowu Oniru, who reigned for 25 years. I pray to Olodumare to grant him, and the souls of all my departed forebears’ eternal rest.
”Iruland is very central to the commerce and economy of development Lagos State. I want to assure all and sundry that Iruland will continue to accommodate business development on all fronts, and remain home for all tribes, and races.
”Iruland will continue to align with the vision of our forebears for a cosmopolitan, thriving, and prosperous Lagos.
“Our vision is that Iruland will in no distant future rival the likes of greater New York City, in the United States of America,” Lawal said.