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HRH Erelu Tinuade Onaneye Talks About Her Life

She is one of the distinguished Nigerians who are doing well abroad. She is like a cultural Ambassador abroad, spreading the gospel of Yoruba Culture and tradition.

 A few days back, HRH Erelu Tinuade Onaneye spoke to City People Publisher Seye Kehinde about her life. Below are excerpts of the interview.

Please introduce yourself. Who is Erelu Onaneye?

By the Grace of God, I'm HRH Tinuade Mabel Onaneye, The Erelu Oodua of Aye Kingdom and Irawo Oni Oodua of Yorubaland.
I'm an accomplished entrepreneur, career woman, philanthropist and a royal ambassador, a custodian of tradition, values and culture, born in Ode-Aye in Ondo State, into the royal famous of Ogunleyes, Alli family of Aye, who were known at the time to be successful customary lawyer, my mother was a trading merchant. I was raised in Oyo state and Lagos by my Aunt Ogunyemi Alli and presently based in USA.

I'm naturally an outspoken person, fearless individual, blunts and down to earth personality. Say it as it is. And that's why it's extremely difficult for me to hide my feelings most especially when I have issues with immorality. I socialize and make friends easily. By virtue of my position, as Erelu to the monarch or palace, I'm supposed to make more friends, teaches, educates, awareness, protect and promoting the royalty than making enemies and build bridges instead of walls.
 Lastly, I'm a spiritualist not religious, passionate about helping people because as they say, whatever you do for yourself remains and dies with you but what you do for people lives after you. I love to put smiles on people's faces.

What have you been up to?

I have been up to quite a lot. Fixing issues and mending walls as far as it has to do with Yorubas, homes and abroad. I have in my capacity wade into weighty issues capable of causing rancour among our people in diaspora and home. The issue of fake self-imposed Yoruba kings in diaspora. I kicked and campaign against it not to Bastardizing our reached culture and heritage. Obas inheritance is not for the commoner. The Yoruba Obas supported my mission and today, the fake obas are no more recognized in our society home and abroad.

For instance, when one of the wives of Alaafin Oyo, Olori Basirat Adeyemi was alleged to have been having extramarital affairs with the Fuji icon, Alhaji Wasiu Ayinde, I launched investigation into the matter and found the person who happened to the main source of the woe informant and berated him and enjoined him to tender an unreserved apology to Iku Baba Yeye, Alaafin Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi and the entire Oyo Kingdom and Yoruba people. Same way I lent my voice to curtail the excess of Oluwo of Iwo-land Oba Abdulrasheed Akanbi.

Professionally, asides being an accomplished businesswoman, I'm a Pharmacy Technician, trained at the prestigious Tarrant College, Texas. I had worked in few hospitals and retail pharmacy and in the course of my professional services, I've been involved in many humanitarian activities with the support of the health organizations I worked with, to offer quality and free health services to my people in Nigeria and Haiti communities. 
For instance, in 2014 and 2016 respectively, I mobilized a team of medical experts from United States to communities in Aye kingdom, Irele, Ilaje and others in Ondo State to render free medical services and free medical equipment to our people. Those selfless gestures prompted the Halu of Aye kingdom, HRM Akinmusayo Williams Akinlade and the councils of chief to consider me for a highly revered inheritance traditional title in 2012. The Erelu Oodua stool.

I noticed you wear white always, why is this so?

Yes, I wear white clothes most times because it's symbolic and spiritual. There's a uniform for every office. I'm a pillar of a proud heritage and custodian of highly revered culture. Pope wears his sacred religious regalia, same for other priests. So being the Erelu Oodua, a title which is considered sacred and spiritual must have it's peculiarities. So, putting on white clothes goes with the call. Again, white symbolizes peace and considering my title which revolves round ensuring my people live in peace and harmony without fear or prejudice. White also symbolizes purity and liberty. 

A holder of my kind of title must be pure in heart and transparent in his or her dealings so as not to bring reproach and shame to the royal traditional institutions that deemed him or her fit for the revered stool. Yeah, it's possible to come across my pictures online where I wore multi colored. Those are undoubtedly old pictures of mine which I may have taken before ascending this sacred stool.
For records, I wear white always and it's simply part of me.

 You are always at the forefront of Yoruba issues. Why is this so?

First, they say to whom much is given, much is expected. Being conferred a highly traditional title of this kind calls for greater responsibility and that's why I cannot afford to be silent and indifferent in the face of serious issues in Nigeria, Yoruba land and international (diaspora). Like I mentioned earlier, my primary mission is to build bridges and not walls. I have lended my voice on countless number of issues that affect lives and Yoruba nation as a whole. 
I have granted interviews, issued press statements on different issues and called on government to attend to urgent issues when necessary. In all of these, I can boldly say I have recorded quite an impressive results and I haven't stopped. "Say no to rape and gender inequalities"

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  1. A proud Daughter of ours. Keep the flag flying chief.