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Ogun Monarch Suspended Over Naira Notes Abuse

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Ogun Monarch
Ogun Monarch knitted naira notes

The Olu of Owode in Owode Local Government of Ogun State, Oba Kolawole Sowemimo, has been suspended by the Egba Traditional Council over the alleged defacing of naira notes.

The two-month suspension without salaries was reportedly announced during the traditional rulers’ meeting on Friday.

Speaking to PUNCH about the matter, Oba Sowemimo acknowledged the decision, stating:

“They said the suspension was due to the way I spent money on one musician.”

The monarch revealed that the suspension, initially set for three months without salaries, was reduced to two months after he apologized during the meeting.

Oba Sowemimo, who had earlier apologized to the Federal government for the distasteful act, said: “I accept the verdict of the council because it is the person that we love that we chastise, so I am good with the decision,” he said.

The controversy arose from a viral video in the second week of January, where the Olu of Owode knitted N1000 notes together to form a long rope of naira. Subsequently, the monarch was seen wrapping the roped naira notes around the neck of the popular Fuji musician, Wasiu Ayinde, during a party.

Ogun Monarch
Ogun Monarch knitted naira notes.

The monarch’s actions, which violate Section 21 (3) of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007, prompted the Egba Traditional Council to take action. The act considers spraying, dancing, or marching on the naira during social occasions to be abuse and defacing of the currency, and this is punishable by fines or imprisonment.

The Oba’s suspension was reportedly endorsed at the Egba Traditional Council’s February statutory meeting chaired by Oba Adedotun Gbadebo, the Alake and paramount ruler of Egbaland.

The council’s Ethics Committee recommended the suspension, emphasizing that during this period, Oba Sowemimo should not present himself as a traditional ruler, attend government or public functions, and would not receive any payments.

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