Apprehension as legal fireworks emerge over ascension to Olubadan throne


•Tradition’ll be followed to determine next Olubadan —Olubadan-in-Council

•Ibadan markets shut down for Late Olubadan

How Olubadan of Ibadan died —UCH

 •University of Ibadan, UI, mourns late king

Yorubaland has lost a mature, peaceful monarch —Gani Adams

Olubadan was a great monarch —PFN president, Wale Oke

Olubadan was progressive ruler who brought progress, stability to Ibadan —ACF

Apprehension is mounting in the camp of the Otun Olubadan, Chief Lekan Balogun, over legal fireworks that may hinder his smooth ascension to the throne of the Olubadan of Ibadan.The anxiety arose following the demise of Oba Saliu Adetunji, on Sunday and the need to install the next in rank to the deceased Oba Adetunji, who is the Otun Olubadan, Chief Balogun.

The controversial elevation of the Ibadan chiefs to Obas by the administration of late Governor Abiola Ajimobi is creating unease in the otherwise peaceful tradition of ascension to the Olubadan stool, which may be a stumbling block, as a pending court case on the said elevation had been reignited.

Consequent upon this, a reminder by solicitors to those involved  in the case was sent to Governor Seyi Makinde, yesterday,  to look before leaping into the installation of a new Olubadan.

In letter addressed, dated and jointly signed by former Attorney  General of Oyo State, Michael Lana and  Prof. Oyelowo Oyewa, SAN, in clear words, advised Governor Makinde to thread softly on the matter.

The full letter to the governor read: “Installation of a New Olubadan Of Ibadanland: May I firstly, commiserate with you on the demise of His Royal Majesty, Oba Saliu Adetunji, Aje Ogunguniso 1, the Olubadan of Ibadanland. May his soul rest in peace.

“Secondly, may I humbly draw your attention to a traditional aberration and illegality that may occur in an attempt to install another Olubadan of Ibadanland, in view of the existence of Suit No.!/22/2020-HRM Oba (Senator) Lekan Balogun & Ors V Governor of Oyo State & Ors.

“Kindly note, Your Excellency, that your predecessor in office, without thinking of the legal effects of his actions on the future of Ibadan traditional institution, conferred the title of Obaship on some Chiefs and Baales and gave them the right to wear beaded Crowns and coronets, in 2017.

“This action was challenged in Suit No. M317/2017-Chief Rashidi Ladoja V the Governor Of Oyo State. The High Court per Aiki 1, nullified the said conferment, which was actually a total contravention of both the Chiefs Law and the Ibadan chieftaincy customary law.

“However, the Court of Appeal, in Appeal No.CA/IB/99/2018 set aside the said judgment of Aiki J on technical grounds without touching on the merit of the case and sent the case back for retrial.

“Upon your Excellency’s assumption of office, it was resolved that the matter be settled amicably and same was settled through the instrumentality of a Terms of Settlement which became the judgment of the court. The said Terms of Settlement, recognised the illegality of the said actions and therefore, set aside the Gazettes by which the said Chiefs became Obas with a right to wear beaded Crowns and coronets.

These  Chiefs and Baales, were dissatisfied with this consent judgment and therefore, instituted two separate suits to set aside the consent judgment while at the same time clinging to the title of Obas(which actually is in contempt of court). On of these cases is Suit No: Suit No.1/22/2020-HRM Oba (Senator) Lekan Balogun & Ors V Governor Of Oyo State & Ors.

“Now, may I draw your Excellency’s attention to the fact that in committing this aberration which changed the Ibadan Chieftaincy customary law, the Olubadan Chieftaincy Declaration of 1957 was not amended and therefore, remains extant. Under that declaration and all relevant laws, no Oba can ascend to the throne of Olubadan. In other words, as long as the Chiefs still cling to the title of Oba, they cannot ascend to that throne and any installation of any of them during the pendency of that suit, is illegal, null and void.

“In the entire history of Ibadanland, we have never had such a situation where the legality or otherwise of the installation of the Olubadan would be an issue and this was what your predecessor did not take into consideration before venturing into an illegal journey. Ibadan Chieftaincy elevation had always been smooth and without any rancour to the envy of all other towns.

“It is in line with this legal situation that I advice, most humbly, that you should withhold any approval of any Chief to become the Olubadan, so that you will not also join in the desecration of Ibadan Chieftaincy Customary law.

“There are only two ways to deal with this situation: one is for the Chiefs to withdraw the aforementioned cases and the other is to wait for the court to pronounce on it before any step is taken to install an Olubadan. If the court holds that they have the right to be Obas and entitled to wear beaded crowns, then they are perpetually barred from becoming another Oba. Nowhere in the customary law of any Yoruba town is an Oba elevated to become another Oba.

“If, on the other hand, the court holds that the Terms of Settlement stands, and their obaship title is illegal, then they are free to be elevated to the post of Olubadan. The ball, your Excellency, is in their court.

“I wish you well as you consider, as an Ibadan man and as Governor, your place in history.”

Meanwhile, some Ibadan chiefs, yesterday, held a closed-door meeting at the home of the Otun Olubadan of Ibadanland, Chief Lekan Balogun, who is expected to become the new Olubadan, following the demise of the occupier of the stool, Oba Adetunji.

The chiefs, who were at the meeting at the Ali Iwo home of Chief Balogun, include the Osi Balogun of Ibadanland, Chief Abdulateef Adebimpe; the Balogun of Ibadanland, Chief Owolabi Olakuleyin; the Asipa Olubadan, Chief Eddy Oyewole; the Ekarun Olubadan, Chief Amidu Ajibade, among others.

Though details of the closed-door meeting were not disclosed, Vanguard gathered that the chiefs met over the next line of action on apprehension generated by their previous elevations.

Ibadan markets shut down

Meanwhile,  the entire markets in the city of Ibadan were shut down, yesterday, by the market leaders as a mark of respect for the Late Olubadan of Ibadan Land,  Oba Adetunji, who passed on on Sunday.

There were no activities at the popular iso Pako market, Bodija Ibadan,  as the sellers complied with the directive of the market leaders to shut down buying and selling as a mark of respect for the Late Olubadan.

Tradition’ll be followed to determine next Olubadan —Olubadan-in-Council

Meanwhile, the Olubadan-in-Council has declared that tradition would be followed in naming the next Olubadan of Ibadan, regardless of their elevation to Obas.

A statement at the end of a two-hour closed-door meeting held at the residence of Otun Olubadan, Chief Lekan Balogun, yesterday, said members of the council would meet to announce the next Olubadan of Ibadan in line with tradition after the mourning of Oba Saliu Adetunji is over.

However, the Osi Olubadan, Chief Rashidi Ladoja and two other members of the council were absent at the meeting.

The council said: “Following the demise of the 41st Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Adetunji, Aje Ogungunniso 1, on Sunday, members of the Olubadan-in-Council on Monday condoled with the Governor Makinde of Oyo State, the people of Ibadan land and family members of the late monarch.

Rising from a two-hour closed-door meeting held at the Alarere residence of Otun Olubadan and the would-be successor to the throne, Dr. Lekan Balogun, the Olubadan-in- Council described the deceased leader of the Council as an indefatigable ruler whose reign would be difficult to forget.

“While praying for the repose of the soul of the departed king, the council urged the bereaved family of the deceased to remain joyous and happy for the legacies of good reign left behind by their patriarch.

“The council reiterated that the historical and traditional succession plan to the throne of Olubadan remains sacrosanct, the elevation conferred on all the members of the Olubadan-in-Council as Royal Majesties, notwithstanding.

“Members of the council were elevated to the Royal Majesties status by the previous administration in the state led by the late Governor Abiola Ajimobi and it became contentious and litigatious.

Olubadan-in-Council said the elevation granted the members, who also serve as kingmakers had not in any way altered the age-long and enviable traditional succession plan to the Olubadan throne in Ibadan land.

“There should be no controversy as to who becomes the next Olubadan amongst us as the previous elevation that made us Royal Majesties did not in any way affect our respective offices in the Olubadan-in-Council and would not preclude any of us to mount the Olubadan throne whenever it is the person’s turn.

“We are the kingmakers and we will do the needful at the appropriate time. For now, we are still all in the mourning mood of our departed father and revered leader in the Council and we just want to assure the generality of our people both home and in the diaspora that there’s no cause for alarm,” the statement added.

How Olubadan died —UCH

Meanwhile, the University College Hospital, Ibadan,  has explained that the Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji, died at the Intensive Care Unit of the hospital at 01.15a.m., on Sunday.

A statement by its Deputy Director of Information and Public Relations Officer, Toye Akinrinola, noted that the monarch was referred to UCH from a private hospital in Ibadan about 9.30p.m., on Saturday.

It further stated that the Chief Medical Director CMD, Prof. Jesse Otegbayo, immediately directed a high-powered medical team to provide medical treatment to the late monarch.

The CMD also wrote the overnor of the state, Seyi Makinde, to inform him of Olubadan’s death.

The statement read in part,  “The Olubadan of Ibadanland, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Adetunji, Aje Oguguniso 1, on  January 2, 2022, passed on at the Intensive Care Unit  of the University College Hospital, Ibadan at 1.15 a.m.

“The late monarch was referred to the UCH from a private hospital in Ibadan at 9.30p.m., yesterday (Saturday).

“He was immediately admitted at the ICU where the Chief Medical Director CMD, Prof. Otegbayo directed that a high-powered medical team be constituted to provide the best medical treatment to him.

“By 1.15a.m., today (Sunday), His Imperial Majesty breathed his last breath. The CMD was at the ICU in the early hours of today to pay the late Olubadan his last respect.

Afterward, the CMD wrote a letter of notification of the demise of the revered monarch to Governor Seyi of Oyo State, which was received by the Permanent Secretary of the Oyo State Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Dr. Bashiru Olanrewaju on behalf of the Oyo State Government. A similar letter was written to the Family of the departed Olubadan.

“Prof.  Otegbayo also escorted the corpse of Oba Adetunji from the ICU to a waiting ambulance and handed the corpse to the family and other dignitaries on the ground.”

Meanwhile, the Vice-Chancellor, University of Ibadan, Prof. Kayode Adebowale, has commiserated with the immediate family, people of Ibadanland, Oyo State, and Nigeria on the death of Oba Adetunji.

He stated that Oba Adetunji was a pillar of support to the University, who never missed an opportunity to offer wise counsel and words of support for the progress of the institution.

He said, “My last engagement with Oba Adetunji was on November 16, 2021, when he received our Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammadu Abubakar, on a courtesy call, in his Popoyemoja Palace.

“Kabiyesi demonstrated that he was UI’s father and Chief Landlord. UI was, indeed, honoured and celebrated on that memorable visit.”

“I must say, Kabiyesi Adetunji lived humbly; served humbly; came loving; lived loving; and served loving.

“Our consolation lies in the great deeds of the late Olubadan which are engraved unforgettably in the hearts of women and men. Such deeds, which knew no ethnic or religious boundaries, bear clear testimony to the late Olubadan’s triumph over death.

“On behalf of the governing council, management, staff, and students of the University of Ibadan, we sincerely commiserate with Governor  Makinde, the immediate family of the late Olubadan, Olubadan-in-Council, Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes, CCII, and all Ibadan indigenes and residents.”

Yoruba land has lost a mature, peaceful monarch—Gani Adams

The Aareonakakanfo of Yorubaland, Gani Adams, has described the death of  Oba Adetunji as a huge loss, saying the demise of the first class monarch has robbed Nigeria and Yoruba land of a mature and peaceful monarch.

Aare Adams, in a statement by his Special Assistant on Media, Mr. Kehinde Aderemi, said: “I feel bad at the news of Kabiesi’s death, however, I am happy he died a hero. The late Oba Adetunji, in his life, brought immense development to Ibadanland. He was very mature, pleasant and peaceful.

“The late Olubadan was never controversial. He was among the prominent Obas that graced my installation ceremony as the Aareonakakanfo of Yorubaland in Oyo, in January 2018.

“And he had a robust relationship with the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III, throughout his reign.

“Kabiesi’s mature and peaceful life was in display throughout his reign and it was evident that Ibadanland had peaceful and great moment in history during his reign.

“Very pleasant, the late Oba Adetunji was a brave man with distinct records of successes. Kabiesi’s five years reign was a milestone and we can hardly forget his immense contributions to the ancient town of Ibadan as well as the traditional institutions.

“With Kabiesi’s death, Yorubaland has lost a peaceful monarch and symbol of humility. We have also lost one of our respected monarchs and a pillar of hope for our race.

“Olubadan’s death had also robbed us of a true ambassador, whose maturity and wealth of experience is next to none.

Olubadan was progressive ruler —ACF

The Arewa Consultative Forum, ACF, has eulogized late Olubadan, Saliu Adetunji  and described him as a very progressive traditional ruler who brought progress and stability to Ibadan.

Chief Audu Ogbeh, the National Chairman of ACF, said in a statement,  said: “The respected traditional ruler left us to join his ancestors on January 2, 2022.

“At the ACF, we considered the late Olubadan as a very progressive traditional rulers who brought progress and stability to Ibadan, the headquarters of the defunct Western region and a very powerful stool in Yoruba land. It did this in a a period of five years in office.”


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