By Trevor Oluwole
A former Oyo State Governor and a High Chief in Ibadan, Sen. Rasheed Adewolu Ladoja has praised the verdict of the State High Court in favor of the Olubadan in Council, describing it as a victory for Ibadanland.
In a statement signed by his media aide, Lanre Latinwo, Ladoja said it was not a personal victory for him because what triggered the suit he filed in court to challenge the government decision was the need to preserve the globally cherished custom and tradition of Olubadan succession system, which he described as smooth and rancor-free.
The statement reads, “ The judgment has vindicated us as purists who abhor any contamination of a rancour free succession process that has become the envy of many cities all over the world. I do not in any way see it as a personal victory but as a victory for the whole Ibadans.
The Oyo State government had earlier set up a commission on May 19 , 2017, to review the Olubadan stool accession and the Ibadan Chieftancy system. The commission’s report recommended the creation of more monarchs in Ibadanland, leading to the installation of 21 kings by the governor on August 27, 2017, at the Mapo Hall, Ibadan.
A State High Court presided over by Justice Olajumoke Aiki, has on Friday, declared the review of the 1957 Olubadan Chieftaincy Declaration and other Related Chieftaincies in Ibadanland, which was done by the Justice Akintunde Boade-led Commission, as unconstitutional, illegal, null, void, and of no effect. Thereby ordering that the new 21 Obas installed by the state Government be unseated.
Justice Aiki held that wearing of beaded crowns was beyond the powers of Sections 10, 12 and 25 of the Oyo State Chiefs Law.
“Section 25 of the Chiefs Law could not be treated in isolation to the provisions of parts two and three of the Chiefs Laws, especially sections 10, 12 and 25, which did not give power to the governor to review the Olubadan Chieftaincy Declaration.
The court concluded that Governor Ajimobi acted beyond his constitutional powers. She stated that a judicial commission of inquiry could not amend or further amend, review or further review the chieftaincy declaration.
Meanwhile, Ladoja has praised the verdict, describing it as a victory for Ibadanland and also a Defense for Culture.
The deposed “kings” are Chief Lekan Balogun, the Otun Olubadan of Ibadanland; High Chief Eddy Oyewole, Ashipa Olubadan of Ibadanland; High Chief Akinloye Owolabi Olakuleyin, Balogun of Ibadanland; High Chief Tajudeen A. Ajibola, Osi Balogun of Ibadaland; High Chief Latifu Gbadamosi Adebimpe, Asipa Balogun of Ibadanland; High Chief Kolawole Adegbola, Ekarun Balogun of Ibadanland; High Chief Abiodun Kola-Daisi, Ekerin Olubadan of Ibadanland and High Chief S. Amidu Ajibade, Ekarun Olubadan of Ibadan. Others are Chief Lasisi Akano, Onijaye of Ijaye; Chief Ismaila Olasunkanmi, Oniroko of Iroko; Chief Moses Olasunkanmi, Onikereku of Ikereku; Chief Mudasiru Omodele Adebayo, Baale Olodo; Chief Victor Sunday Okunola, Elegbeda of Egbeda; Alhaji Wahab Olabamiji Okedina, Baale Okelade-Okin; Chief Olabamiji Ahmed Thomas, Alakufo of Akufo; Chief Gbolagade Muritala Babalola, Onido of Ido; Chief Dauda Omotoso, Baale Awotan; Chief Tiamiyu Labiyi Ladipo, Baale of Abanla; and Chief James Oladipo Obisesan, Baale Akanran.