Ilara-Remo

Ilara is a member of the Remo Thirty-three Traditional towns. Ilara is founded on a plain ground slanting slowly towards Egudu. Ilara is bounded by the following Remo towns-Akaka, Irolu, Ilisan, Ode Remo and Egudu. The distance from Ilara to the other various boundary mates is under five kilometres except Egudu which is about a kilometre. Oral tradition says that Alara is a son of Oduduwa. The children of the same mother with Alara are Ajero and Orangun.

It is asserted that Alara left Ile Ife on his own with the intention of founding a community of his own. He left Ile Ife with his own people. He had his own Ifa priest whose name was Odugbaye. They wandered through the jungles and also through some human habitations. Their routes and partial settlements were not remembered for our record purposes. The routes and partial settlements were decided by his Ifa priest, Odugbaye. The only first settlement that could be remembered was Ijebu Ife where he came in contact with the Ajalorun of Ijebu Ife. After leaving Ijebu Ife, he came to Ijebu Ode the domain of the Awujale. The assertion goes further that the Alara and the Awujale did not meet in the residence of the Awujale. In the ancient period, two beaded

Kings should not meet face to face, this has changed now. The Awujale was informed about the arrival of Alara into his domain. The Awujale

as the assertion put it, left his residence and he received the Alara

where the statue of Obanta is erected today. There, they exchanged royal pleasantries one on one.

Alara’s movement did not end there. He wandered from Ijebu Ode to a place called Ajeregun which is known as Oko Oba. It is not far from Ogijo. Ajeregun is a Royal village. Alara stayed there for many years and he later took off for another (new) settlement. He left part of his people at Oko Oba (Ajeregun). The descendants of these people are still at Ajeregun up till today according to the assertion. The assertion went

on to say that Alara passed through Sagamu, Iperu, Ode Remo and

settled in Isara. The passage indicated that all those towns through

which Alara passed had settled down permanently before the arrival

of Alara. When Alara got to Isara he settled down with the Isara community. The place where Alara stayed was Igbo Abe. History says that Alara’s building is still at Igbo Abe in Isara till date. Alara left Isara and looked forward to another settlement. The next place of settlement was Idogun. He again moved to the present site of Ilara where there is permanent settlement till date.

The descendants of Alara are still in Isara today. They occupy the Igbo Abe area of settlement of Alara. The shrine of Alara is still in Igbo Abe in Isara. The shrine is preserved. All reigning Alara go to Igbo Abe in Isara to pour libations unto the gods of Ilara that were left behind. There is the legendary affinity between the Odemo of Isara and the Alara of Ilara. The affinity had been put in place by the Alara who settled in Isara, and the legendary participation has not been broken ever since.

History says that many Ilara descendants are in Ilisan. This was the effect of the internecine wars. Those in Ilisan are at a quarter popularly known as Ago-Ilara. These Ilara descendants still hold their allegiance to their home town. They trek from Ilisan to farm their land in Ilara. Ilara is a federated town. There are two communities in Ilara, Ilara original and the remnants of Egudu community. Both towns co-exist in Ilara despite their lean population. Both communities live peaceably together.

There are five ruling houses in Ilara. They are as listed:

1. Eyiga

2. Abejoye

3. Agbore

4. Adegosoye

5. Lerenja

There are seven King makers in Ilara. They are as listed:

1. The Olisa

2. The Oliwo

3. The Apena

4. The Otunbamojo

5. The Odi

6. The Balogun

7. The Iyalode

Many Kings have reigned in the history of the town. As at the time

of writing, twenty-three Kings have reigned in Ilara. Many of the Ilara Kings cannot be remembered by names except the following:

1. Oluna akoda kankan bi ina

2. Eyiga ‘le d’oye

3. Adogansoye

4. Odumose

5. Atunlute

6. Sonubi

7. Lerenja

8. Agbere

9. Agbore

10. Adebayo

11. Adekoya

12. Oba E. O. Awobajo

History says the Alara has some peculiarities which other Remo Kings do not have. The peculiarities are in the area of antiquities. The first Alara brought out from Ile Ife the following antiquities and these being his insignia of Kingship:-

(a) ancient beads

(b) Gold

(c) a beaded crown with sixteen birds

(d) Royal wears and regalia

It is asserted that the Alara is the most senior King in Remo as he is rated as one of the principal Yoruba Kings. The truth in the assertion that the Alara is the most senior Oba in Remo is debatable. The Alara was not the first to settle in Remo. At his arrival he met many or even almost

all the other settlements in Remo in place. In respect of crown, some earlier Remo Obas claimed bringing crowns from Ile-Ife to Remo. Whatever the crowns, they are crowns as long as they are regarded as such. The crown of the Alara has no comparison in the Division, the assertion continues. The royal wear of the Alara has no equal in this division. The three-a-piece dress, heavily beaded known as “Ewu- Oku” is not in possession of any other Remo King as the assertion says.

The Ilara community took off with the traditional religion like other Yoruba Kingdoms. When the Missionaries came they penetrated all Remo towns and Evangelised the people. Ilara was not an exception. The Anglican Mission and the Methodist took roots in Ilara as small as it is. There was an elementary school in Ilara which the two Missions founded. Several Ilara sons and daughters that passed through the school had been and will always be big men and women in the Nigerian society. There are two orthodox churches in Ilara and many Pentecostal churches. The Islamic religion is not lagging in the community. There is a mosque where Muslims worship their Allah. There are Christians, there are Muslims and there are Traditionalists.

There are the following quarters in Ilara:-

1. Itun Iraye

2. Itun Abe

3. Abejoye Compound

4. Itun Omo

5. Ayegbami

The Ilara community are farmers. The distant Ilara people are either traders or craftsmen, and some are in the services of the government and mercantile houses. The resident Ilara sons and daughters make use of their Akuro, Idogon and Idokosi land as farming plots.

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