Court Upholds 1980 Ife Chieftaincy Declaration In Selecting New Ooni
This is just as Prince Kayode Adebowale and four others from Akui branch of Oshikola Ruling House urged the Chief Judge to transfer their case to another judge, saying they cannot get fair judgment in her court.
Sooko Adegoke and Prince Marcus Adebola Akimoyero had on behalf of Lafogido Ruling House of Ile-Ife, dragged Governor Rauf Aregbesola, the Obalufe of Ile-Ife, Oba Solomon Omisakin (now late) and Lowa of Ife, Chief Joseph Ijaodola to court, challenging their decision to allow only Giesi Ruling House present candidates for the vacant stool of Ooni.
The plaintiffs sought the order of the court to set aside 1980 Ife Chieftaincy Declaration saying the declaration was lopsided, unjust, unconstitutional and unfair.
Counsel to the plaintiffs, Mr. Soji Oyetayo, sought an order of the court preventing the defendants from embarking on processes to select the new Ooni from Giesi Ruling House on ground of alleged noticeable flaw in the 1980 declaration.
But respondents contended that it was too late to challenge the declaration after it had been used to produce the late Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade, Olubuse 11.
Counsel to Governor Aregbesola, who is the first respondent, Mr. Wale Afolabi submitted that the suit filed by the plaintiffs was incompetent after 35 years that the declaration has been in existence.
Also, counsel to the second and third defendants, Mr Peter Ogunleye urged the court to dismiss the suit for lacking competence and uphold the 1980 declaration as authentic.