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21 kings: Olubadan asks Ajimobi to respect rule of law

21 kings: Olubadan asks Ajimobi to respect rule of law

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Olufemi Atoyebi, Ibadan

The Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji, on Tuesday, called on Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State to respect the rule of law by desisting from telling the public that the installation of 21 Ibadan kings was irreversible.

On Monday, the governor presented new cars to the 21 Ibadan kings and 15 others outside Ibadan.

In a statement signed by the monarch’s Personal Assistant/Director of Media and Public Affairs, Adeola Oloko, the Olubadan called on the public to forget the thought that the governor’s action had come to stay.

The statement said, “The public should perish the thought that the controversial approval of beaded crowns by the Oyo State Government to Ibadan high chiefs and baales was irreversible, as our case against the government is very alive. Recall that a judgment delivered by Justice Aiki of the Oyo State High Court had declared the whole chieftaincy reform illegal, null and void.

“Afterwards, the Oyo State Government decided to file an appeal against the ruling. My position is that if a case is in court, it is no longer open for discussion as this statement is automatically subjudice. If it is not reversible, why did the two parties have to go to court?”

The monarch also said that it was wrong to ascribe political connotation to the controversies that greeted the governor’s installation of the baales and high chiefs.

“The issue raised is customary and traditional in nature. My humble opinion is that the procedure for approval of beaded crowns for any chief or baale in Ibadan was not discussed at the Olubadan-in-Council level. If it was discussed, how would any of the High Chiefs bear two titles at the same time? Oba and High Chief? Abomination.

“The Olubadan is not opposed to provision of cars for traditional rulers by the state government, he, however, appealed to Governor Ajimobi to prevail upon the kings to release the 11 months’ salaries of palace members of staff which they  had been withholding along with Olubadan’s salary cheques, even when the allocations for traditional councils had been released.

“In order to avoid a breakdown of law and order in Ibadanland and beyond, the Olubadan has maintained a dignified silence. If the motive behind the reform was to modernise, then the reform had bred indiscipline and gangsterism.”

 One of the cases in mind was the failed attempt by the so-called new kings, backed by the state government, to undermine the authority of the Olubadan who decreed that there should be no masquerade dance.”

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