The Ijebu expedition which was a classic 19th-century British colonial expedition through force was motivated by a good number of factors as follows:
- The Ijebu people closed their trading routes to Lagos.
- George Catar the new Governor of Lagos, capitalized on the maltreatment of the former acting Governor; Denton, and attacked the Awujala in 1892.
- The Ijebu people refused to admit Christian missionaries into their land.
- The Awujala was not on good terms with the Ibadan people and as a result refused to sign a trade treaty
- The expedition force led by Col. Scot defeated the Awujala’s forces at Yemoji and Pobo respectively in 1892 and that was the first step in the British occupation of the Yoruba land.
- Meanwhile, the Igba, Abeokuta, Oyo, and Ibadan recognized the superiority of the British powers over theirs in 1893 and submitted to the authority.