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Owo Kingdom is ruled by Princes who are descendants of Olowo Elewuokun according to Ifa consultation. The king is often assisted by appointed chiefs collectively known as, ‘Edibo Ologho’. The kingdom on its own is a factory of tradition and culture divided into 5 major quarters administered by Olowo’s Royal brother, His Royal Highness, Oba Kofoworola Oladoyinbo Aruliwo III, Ojomo Oluda of Ijebu Owo. While Chief Ojumu assisted by Chief Sasere and Chief Elerewe headed Igboroko quarters; Ehin Ogbe quarters is headed by Chief Osere; Iloro quarters is headed by Chief Akowa loja and Isaipien quarters is headed by Chief Ajana.
His Royal Majesty, Kabiyesi Alayeluwa, Oba (Dr.) Ajibade Gbadegesin Ogunoye III, Olowo of Owo and Paramount Ruler of Owo Kingdom presides over the Royal Council meetings called, ‘Ugbima Aleli’ which is made up of revered traditional High and titled Chiefs and village Heads of surrounding towns and villages.
The Ugbima Aleli is held every nine days (Isisan) to settle disputes, deliberate on the socio-economic development of Owo and also recommend Chieftaincy titles to whosoever deserves it.
Olowo’s Royal Courts popularly referred to as Aghofen Olowo is the seat of power in Owo Kingdom from time immemorial and has housed the Olowo who is regarded by his subjects as a semi-divine king, second in rank to Orisa (supreme god) both residentially and officially.
The Monarch’s selection is by divination and announced through the kingsmakers while an Olowo must come from the sons of past Olowos (Omo Ologhos). After which the Iloro chiefs consisting of senior chiefs collectively known as Ighare under the leadership of Chief Akowa loja and others collectively known as Ugbama play significant roles in the installation.
The installation and coronation lasts for about 3 months and involves lengthy traditional rites which distinct the king from the ordinary. As such, the king lives in ordained ceremonial and secluded areas of the palace and rarely appears in public except on ceremonial outings. The Olowo is approached only with reverence and regarded as the fountain of justice and source of honour by his people.
Olowo’s palace is perhaps the largest in the entire Yoruba nation spreading across 99 hectares of land. It houses over 100 ancient courtyards out of which 17 remain untampered till date. These include: Ugha Okonren, Eyinode, Akomaduse, Eduma, Ugha Okegha, Inoli, Ugha Oke (Uli Ade), Odouli, Oke-Agwe, Ugha Oluwa, Ugha Moron and Ugankun amongst others. The disappearance of most of these courtyards is as a result of disintegration and facelift of sections of the Royal Court. However Palace historians still recognizes the sites where traditional ceremonies are performed as well as for other needs.
From the 11th Century to the present time, Owo Kingdom has had 32 Olowos namely: Ojugbelu (Arere, Omalagaye) 1019-1070 A.D. (51 years); Olowo Imade, 1070-1106 A.D. (36 years); Olowo Korodo, 1106-1156 A.D. (50 years); Olowo Agwobojoro, 1156-1209 A.D.(53 years); Olowo Odondon, 1209-1260 A.D. (51 years); Olowo Ajegunren, 1260-1305 A.D. (45 years); Olowo Asunsola, 1305-1332 A.D. (27 years); Olowo Renrengenjen, 1340-1356 A.D. (16 years); Olowo Asunsoma, 1356-1386 A.D. (30 years); Olowo Geja/Ogeja, 1386-1430 A.D. (44 years); Olowo Imagele, 1430-1481 A.D. (51 years); Olowo Alamuren, 1481-1539 A.D. (58 years); Olowo Omasan, 1539-1578 A.D. (39 years); Olowo Omaro, 1578-1600 A.D. (22 years); Olowo Osogboye, 1600-1648 A.D. (48 years); Olowo Alubiolokun, 1648-1690 A.D. (42 years); Olowo Otutubosun, 1690-1719 A.D. (29 years); Olowo Ajagbusiekon, 1719-1760 A.D. (41 years); Olowo Ajaka, 1760-1781 A.D. (21 years); Olowo Elewuokun, 1781-1833 A.D. (52 years); Olowo Aghagunghaye and Sons, 1833-1876 A.D. (43 years); Olowo Adaraloye, 1876-1880 A.D. (4 years); Olowo Aladetoun, 1880-1889 A.D. (9 years); Olowo Aralepo Olubila, 1889 A.D.; Olowo Olagbegi Atanneye I, 1889-1902 A.D. (13 years); Olowo Ogunoye, 1902-1913 (11 years); Olowo Olateru Olagbegi I, 1913-1938 A,D, (25 years); Olowo Ajike Ogunoye, 1938-1941 A.D. (3 years); Olowo (Sir.) Olateru Olagbegi II, 1941-1966 A.D. (25 years); Interregnum period, 1966-1968 (2 years); Olowo Adekola Ogunoye II, 1968-1993 (25 years).
On these 25 years, Olowo (Sir.) Olateru Olagbegi II was on suspension order. After the demise of Olowo Adekola Ogunoye II in 1993, the Ondo State Government under His Excellency, Evangelist Bamidele Ishola Olumilua revoked the suspension order and re-installed Olowo (Sir.), Olateru Olagbegi II back to the throne of his ancestors to complete his assignment in the world.
Olowo (Sir.) Olateru Olagbegi II, 1993-1998 (5 years); Olowo David Victor Folagbade Olateru-Olagbegi III, SAN, 1999-2019 (20 years); Olowo Ajibade Gbadegesin Ogunoye III, 2019 to date.