Unfortunately, the significant historical event of the Yoruba’s successful retaking of Ilorin from the descendants of Alimi, and its subsequent return by the British, often remains in the shadows. It is crucial that this event finds its place in the curriculum of primary schools in the Western region.
Within Ilorin itself, the journey to establish a proper emirate was challenging. The influential Yoruba war chiefs aimed to reinstate the traditional Yoruba political system, wherein the chiefs within a kingdom would select their king. The Emirs, however, resisted this change. By 1895, the chiefs were gaining significant ground in this contest. This situation led to Emir Momoh taking his life after setting his palace ablaze. The victorious chiefs then installed Sulaiman as Emir. This was the state of affairs when the forces of the British Royal Niger Company arrived and conquered Ilorin in 1897.
In the subsequent years, it was the British who formalized Ilorin as a fully-fledged emirate, aligning it with the Emirs of Hausaland. The Emir seized this opportunity to exert various emirate-style controls over Ibolo and the north.
This historical episode, marked by resistance, change, and foreign intervention, deserves recognition as part of the educational curriculum, ensuring that future generations understand the complexities and dynamics of their heritage.