Insiders in the palace said that the remains of the paramount ruler left London in a hired air ambulance on Friday and was taken to the palace under the cover of the night yesterday.
According to the sources, the body is lying in a secret part of the palace named Ilegbo, a sacred place where all Oonis gather with their relatives and where highly-prized rituals take place within the parturiency of the palace.
Only the monarch’s male children, highly ranked priests and chiefs are reportedly having permit to entree that inmost recess of the palace and sight the Ooni’s body.
“Even the Oba’s female children can’t come here, tradition does not allow them to sight the Oba at this time,” one of the sources said.
Palace sources said the announcement of the Oba’s death had to be postponed to let his wives and family members move their personal property from the palace, and for the traditional clerics to perform some “compulsory rituals”.
“Members of his family who were with him in London had to hurry back home to remove their personal effects because once his death is declared all their property will belong to the people. They won’t be able to take anything from the palace anymore,” another source said.After the death of the Ooni of Ife, traditionalists in Ile-Ife have announced a seven-day sacred traditional Oro festival.