The Seriki family, which is laying claim to the Olubadan of Ibadan throne, has filed a suit seeking to restrain the Oyo State Governor, Abiola Ajimobi, the Attorney General of the state and the Olubadan-in-Counoil from recognising or installing the Balogun Olubadan of Ibadan land, High Chief Saliu Adetunji, as the next monarch in Ibadan.
The claimants filed the suit numbered 1/149/16, though their counsel, Abideen Adeniran, before an Oyo State High Court.
The claimants, Chief Adebayo Oyediji, Chief Olalekan Fakunle, Chief Rasidi Abinupagun, and Chief Gabriel Kofoworola, acting on behalf of the Seriki family, said aside Adetunji, the defendants must not enthrone anyone as the Olubadan pending the hearing and final determination of the suit.
They also prayed the court to restrain Adetunji from parading himself as the Olubadan-designate.
The statement of claims was supported by a 38-paragraph affidavit deposed to by the first claimant in the suit, Chief Oyediji, and was received with an official stamp of the High Court Registry, Ibadan, on February 8, 2016.
The motion was also supported by exhibits A and B, which were the certified true copy of the judgment obtained by the applicants against the Olubadan of Ibadan and others in suit No: I/313/88 and a copy of the CTC of the enrolment orders of injunction made by the High Court in suit no:I/421/07, restraining the respondents from filling vacancies occurring in the Olubadan of Ibadan Chieftaincy and other chieftaincies covered by the order of interlocutory injunction.
They claimed, “If this interim order of injunction is not made before the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction, the respondents would fill the vacancy in the Olubadan of Ibadan chieftaincy immediately on the 12th of February, 2016 and present this honourable court with a ‘fait accompli.’
“There is real urgency in this case because the ‘res’ to be preserved is the Olubadan of Ibadan Chieftaincy and the respondents have concluded their plans to install the defendant as the next Olubadan of Ibadan in spite of the pendency of the order of interlocutory injunction and in spite of this suit and the claimant learnt of this plan only on February 1, 2016.
“If this situation should be allowed to occur, the applicants would suffer irreparable harm and injury as an irretrievable damage would have been done to them as the appointment of the third defendant (Chief Adetunji) as the next Olubadan would be irreversible and this would be a very grave injustice to the applicants, who had already obtained an order of the High Court against the defendants to restrain them from filling the vacancy in the Olubadan of Ibadan Chieftaincy.”
A son of the Olubadan designate, Alhaji Mikail Adetunji, who spoke on behalf of his father to our correspondent in Ibadan, said it was too early to react to such claims by the Seriki family.
“I can speak on behalf of my father but this is not the right time to say anything. We will consult with the kabiyesi-in-waiting and whatever he feels about such a claim will be communicated to the media at the appropriate time. It is not an issue to treat immediately,” he said.
Meanwhile, Governor Ajimobi’s Special Adviser, Communication and Strategy, Mr. Yomi Layinka, told our correspondent that the Seriki chiefs had the right to seek redress in court if they felt that they have a genuine case to pursue.
He stated that the state government would wait for the outcome of the court’s pronouncement on the issue.
He said, “It will be speculative to say anything on the matter for now. If it’s true that the Seriki line has gone to court to further vent their grievances, it’s their legitimate right. Like we have always maintained, since the parties are in the court, we shall cross the bridge when we get there.”
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