On Thursday, Queen Naomi Silekunola, wife of Eniitan Adeyeye Ogunwusi, the Ooni of Ife, announced her divorce from the first-class king.
While announcing the divorce on Instagram, the queen said the Ooni is hypocritical. “His Majesty has a picture he would love the world to see and perceive him as and another one which is his true self,” she said.
Ooni Ogunwusi is loved by many for his charm and gestures, but he has been in the middle of several scandals and controversies. Here are some of them.
REAL ESTATE FRAUD
Before he ascended the Oduduwa throne in 2015, Ogunwusi was a real estate mogul. FIJ recently published a viral report on how he defrauded hundreds of unsuspecting people through Gran Imperio Group, his real estate company, and its subsidiaries, Howard Roark Ltd. and Metropole Interproject Ltd.
In what victims dubbed the biggest investment scam in Nigeria, Ogunwusi, through ‘Essential Homes’, an ambitious scheme to build and deliver 1,000 affordable bungalow houses to middle and low income earners by the end of 2015, Ooni swindled several home lovers out of billions of naira.
FIJ’s visits to the locations of the supposed estates revealed that the scheme never materialised, and despite petitions to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC), the aggrieved subscribers never got justice, as the agencies did not act on their complaints.
Owing to their links to the Ooni, the companies and their directors also ignored court judgments and disregarded out-of-court agreements.
On December 6, FIJ published a story on Ogunwusi’s role in a land grabbing tussle that involved the late Buruji Kashamu.
Kashamu had coveted and eventually used his political influence to grab N20 billion worth of land belonging to Adeniran Adedokun, a surveyor, in Ogombo Village, Eti-Osa Local Government Area of Lagos State.
Between 2008 and 2020, when Kashamu died, Adedokun did everything he could, including filing a suit, to get his land back, but all was to no avail.
Kashamu sold a portion of the land to the then Prince Ogunwusi, who would become king five years after, for N3 billion in 2011. In an audio obtained by FIJ, Ooni was heard revealing that despite Kashamu’s confession that the land was controversial, he bought it and paid N3 billion in cash.
After confessing to cursing Kashamu who later died mysteriously, Ooni confirmed taking charge by giving orders to developers to continue building on the land. When he met Adebayo Adedokun, the late surveyor’s son in 2020, Ooni told him to forget about the land because all of it would never be his again.
Ooni also told the surveyor’s son that much blood had been shed in the struggle for the land, and much had been buried in the ground.
Queen Naomi Silekunola may have been the latest to leave the king, but she isn’t the first and is not even the second! The three-year marriage produced Tadenikawo, the first and only son of the Ooni.
Before that, the Ooni was married to Adebukola Bambata, and then Zaynab Wuraola Otiti.
The marriage to Bombata was reportedly rocked by her inability to give Ogunwusi a son and her fallout with Princess Adeola, Ogunwusi’s daughter from a teenage romance. Also, Bombata was said to have resented Ogunwusi’s decision to ascend the throne because she never wanted to be in the limelight. Shortly after the prince became king in 2015, the couple parted ways, and Bombata relocated to the United Kingdom.
In March 2016, Ooni Ogunwusi got married a second time to Zaynab Otiti Obanor, popularly referred to as Olori Wuraola. But the union ended with the Queen’s application for divorce in August 2017. While the reason for the divorce was never made public, there was a suggestion that she was a victim of domestic violence.
TEENAGE ROMANCE AND CONSEQUENT ‘IRRESPONSIBILITY’
In the early ’90s, the Ooni, then a teenager, was in an intimate relationship with Omolara Olatubosun, also a teenager in Ibadan, Oyo State. In May 1994, the relationship resulted in the birth of Adeola Ogunwusi, a female.
Even though Adeola was born, the relationship did not lead to marriage. But FIJ understands that despite the Ooni’s public posturing, he has been an absent father in her daughter’s life, even till date, consequently leaving several question marks over whom the Ooni really is and whom the public believe him to be.
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