The Ife palace authority on Wednesday asked the world to disregard reports of the death of the Ooni of Ife, Okunade Sijuwade, saying it remains the only credible authority to announce the demise of the king.
The palace also denied Oba Sijuwade had passed on.
News of the passage of the first class traditional ruler in the South-West of Nigeria broke late Tuesday evening and has been widely published across all media formats.
But addressing journalists at the palace of the Ooni in Ife, the traditional high chief of the land, Joseph Ijaodola, dispelled claims Mr. Sijuwade died in a London hospital Tuesday.
The Lowa Adimula of Ife, accompanied by the secretary, Royal Traditional Council, Adetoye Odewole, who spoke on behalf of other high chiefs, denied the news being circulated across sections of the media.
The traditional chiefs said if the Ooni had passed, the palace would be the first to know, and would be the only authority to announce the development.
They described reports of the monarch’s death as mere rumour, the type they said had been spread about the traditional ruler in the past.
They recalled that the Ooni was rumoured to have died in 1982 and in the year 2004, and called on residents of Ile-Ife to discard the rumour and carry on with their businesses.