Oba of Lagos

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Portrait of Oba Rilwan Akiolu, 2006

The King of Lagos is the traditional, yet ceremonial, sovereign of Lagos, a coastal Yoruba settlement that went on to become one of the largest cities in Africa after first giving its name to Lagos State, the acknowledged financial heart of contemporary Nigeria. The king has no political power, but is sought as a counsel or sponsor by Nigerian politicians who seek support from the various residents of Lagos. Among other ceremonial roles, the Oba also plays a central part in the Eyo festival as well as indulging in tourism advertisements on behalf of the city, often stating, "you've gotta go to Lagos".

The Kingdom of Lagos was under Benin suzerainty until about the 1830s when tribute requests from Benin were rebuffed by Obas Akitoye and Dosunmu.[1]

The current Oba of Lagos, His Highness Oba Rilwan Akiolu, has served in the position since May 2003.

The Royal Seat[edit]

The official residence of the king, since 1630, is Iga Idunganran, a castle constructed by the Portuguese over the course of close to a century. It is today a very popular tourist site.

List of Obas of Lagos[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Smith, Robert. The Lagos Consulate, 1851-1861. Macmillan. p. 90. ISBN 0333240545. 
  2. ^ a b c Plainsail. "Erelu Abiola Docemo Foundation". eraffoundation.org. 
  3. ^ "LAGOS". iinet.net.au. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i Adewunmi Elegbede. "Kingdoms of Nigeria, The Nigerian Database of Rulers, Kings, Kingdoms, Political and Traditional Leaders". kingdomsofnigeria.com. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g Slavery and the Birth of an African City. p. 46. 
  6. ^ a b c d Slavery in Africa and the Caribbean. p. 95. 
  7. ^ a b c Historical Dictionary of Nigeria. 
  8. ^ a b "Eko Adele... - Odu'a Organization of Michigan". facebook.com. 
  9. ^ a b c Slavery and the Birth of an African City. 

Further reading[edit]