Abiodun was the Alaafin of Oyo who finally ended the tyranny of Basorun Gaha. Abiodun, also known as Adegolu was a tall, handsome, slim man of very dark complexion. The wise king showed no visible resentment of the infamous Basorun Gaa’s ways and he paid him homage without wearying. The cup of the Basorun’s iniquities was now full, as well as his sons’, as they killed for pleasure and flaunted their unquestionable authority, taking revenues where even the King is not due. In spite of Abiodun’s careful dealings with Basorun Gaha, it became clearer his life was not to be spared, for the warlord was even getting bored with his subservience. One night, Abiodun went out of the capital city disguised and consulted his subordinate from a smaller town who perfected a plot with him. In the appointed day, the nation rose against Basorun Gaha’s children and butchered them. Finally, the very powerful tyrant who terrorized even the king was made to prostrate in the full glare of everyone. He was ridiculed and killed, his memory left as a stern warning to all usurpers and abusers of power.

Alaafin Abiodun’s successful reign is incomparable to his cousin’s and successor’s, Aoole, who resumed albeit inexplicitly, in the ways of the despotic, short-lived kings. Abiodun lived a long, peaceful life, and he died in April 1789, holding the empire, which extended to Dahomey, Popo and Bariba provinces together. He was second to the last Alaafin to rule united Yoruba country for his reign was followed by revolutions that brought independence to various districts of Oyo Empire. In hindsight, Abiodun appears to have devoted too much time and resources to getting rid of Gaha, that the state was consequently weakened.

Tope Apoola
Profession: Writer