Who still remember that hearsay story of a semi-illiterate but smart king from a town called ikire in the present Osun state that they used to tell us back then? You don”t go and read about the history of Ikire town
OK. Let me gist you. Several decades ago, there lived a king, who was a merchant dealer, semi illiterate but quite smart and very intelligent. He was a real community mobilizer and was so engrossed with the development of his people – a virtue that made him to become the king. So, we were told.
Ikire land, had so many bad roads then, nothing like Ife-Ibadan road, that you see today. Everywhere was purely dusty and badly un-motorable. There were no electricity, no drinkable water and lots of social Amenities that could give a town a facelift. In short, the town has no government presence. And the King wanted to bring some things to the town at least.
So, one day, there were news that filtered in, that a white Gov- General is coming from Ibadan to see the Ooni in Ife then, and would have a stopover at Ikire, to see some timber workers.
As the king heard of this, he was so happy that he will see the General for the first, and will serve as a perfect opportunity to tell him some of the things that are badly in need of in his town.
Then a problem arises, he really can’t express himself very well in English and he doesn’t want a translator, because that may portray him as a pure village head unlike a king that is educated that the whites always want to relate with. So, the wise king got some tutors. They taught him what to say, in form of a speech, but the king formulated his own, in the best way he knows how to express himself.
And the long waited arrived, the king met the whiteman in the Forest with his palace entourage fully decked in their cultural regalia of Aso oke.. The white Governor was happy to see them, he felt honored and was ready to hear them out. Then the king began to read his speech written on a piece of paper, but he was reading something else, the one he had crammed.
He started by putting on his pair of glasses, to portray him as an educated fellow.
Then he began by saying.. “Royal royal ooo… Eeeh eee! Welcome gomina gomina. You’re a kingi, ayamu a kingi.. Kingi meji pade arawon! Ikire wanti wanti INA… Ikire wanti wanti omi, ikire wanti wanti ona baba ona l’ona apomu”.. Then he concludes by saying, “this is me to you ooooo gomina gomina, your royal royal” [Your lordship, you are most welcomed the governor. You are a king, so am I. Two kings are meeting today. Ikire needs Electricity badly. Ikire wants drinkable water. Ikire needs good roads, from Apomu side].
The whiteman who was already picking some Yoruba words before then, just laughed heavily and asked if what he was thinking was what the king was seeking for. The few educated town’s men nodded in affirmation and told the Gov in better ways, what the king was saying.
Just as the king is now, seated nodding his head and muttering a particular word, saying “there you are, dia you are.. Han han! Boserigan niyen, there you are”
Since then, the wonderful town of Ikire never remained the same again, as the Gov general not only gave them roads, but electricity and pipe borne water.
Moral lesson: Say it the way you know how to say it, people would help you understand it.