Ajiboyede was the last Alaafin to be buried at Oyo Igoho, the city Eguguoju intended as capital of the Oyo Empire. He initiated preparations for the return to the old capital. Ajiboyede was successful as king but he became increasingly unpopular towards the end of his long reign.

It was during his rule that the legend of Ajanlapa occurred, the man who in war traded Ajiboyede’s life for his own. He rewarded the brave soldier’s son accordingly and the victory this Ajanpala afforded him inspired his decision to celebrate. Shortly after this elaborate festival usually accompanied by human sacrifice, Ajiboyede lost his first-born son. In grief, he ordered the killing of many Oyo nobles who came to commiserate with him, alleging that their hands smelt of food recently taken and have come to mock him. The people were sure to rise up against him but he publicly apologized to subjects, upon the stern reprimand of a Moslem cleric’s son from Nupe land.

Tope Apoola
Profession: Writer