Alaafin: Court to hear kingmakers’ suit against Makinde Thursday

The High Court 1 sitting in Oyo, Oyo State, on Tuesday, adjourned till Thursday, October 2, for hearing a case instituted by five kingmakers against the State Governor, Seyi Makinde, the State Commissioner for Local Governments and Chieftaincy Matters, as well as Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, over the vacant stool of Alaafin of Oyo.

The PUNCH had reported that the kingmakers in Oyo town, popularly known as Oyo Mesi, dragged the governor and two others to Court to abort the process for the selection/appointment of the candidate for filling the vacant stool of the Alaafin of Oyo candidate by kingmakers.

The stool became vacant after the passing of Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, who reigned for 52 years and died at the age of 83 in April 2022.

The claimants, however, in suit no, HOY/38/2023 are Basorun of Oyo, High Chief Yusuf Ayoola; Laguna of Oyo, High Chief Wakeel Oyedepo; Akiniku of Oyo, High Chief Amuda Yusuf; Areago Basorun of Oyo, High Chief Waheed Oyetunji and Alapo of Oyo who is also Warrant Officer for Alaapini of Oyo, Chief Gbadebo Mufutau, and they were all present in Court.

The lead Counsel to the claimants, Kazeem Sobaloju (SAN), had in his argument pleaded for a stay of status quo pending the determination of the substantive suit.

Sobaloju said, “The claimants have two motions before the court. Motion exparte on an interim order of injunction and motion of notice on the interlocutory injunction.”

But Counsel to defendants, E.O. Ojebisi said they have just been served the motions not up to five days as required by the law on the service of notice.

Ojebisi, therefore, asked for more time to file a counter affidavit.

In his argument, however, Sobaloju urged the Court to grant an order of stay of status quo as a result of the urgency in the matter.

He said, “The kingmakers had performed their traditional role of selecting the new Alaafin as enshrined in the Chieftaincy Law but the state governor instead of approving the process asked them to start the process anew.”

Justice Ladiran Akintola, however, told the counsels to agree on a date for the hearing as there is no urgency in the matter, adding that the defendants should be allowed to be joined in the suit with the filing of a counter affidavit.

Justice Akintola said, “It is after this that I can rule on the stay of the status quo.”

He, therefore, adjourned the hearing of the case till tomorrow, Thursday, October 2.

Meanwhile, some indigenes of Oyo town, staged a peaceful protest at the entrance of the High Court, protesting in delay in the selection of new Alaafin.

They carried placards with different inscriptions such as, “Oyo Mesi follow tradition not money; Alaafin stool is not for sale; On Alaafin: Let dignity reign; Alaafin: Due process, Ife consultation are sacrosanct and a host of others.”

They pleaded with the state Governor, Makinde, to use his good office for the selection of the paramount ruler.


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