Ilado-Igbatoro Community Chiefs, the Akure North Local Government Council of Obas, and the Registered Trustees of Olus and Baales in Akure North Local Government Area of Ondo State have written a petition to report to Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu and Security operatives, an attempt by the Deji of Akure, HRM, Oba Aladetoyinbo Ogunlade Aladelusi, to instigate fresh chieftaincy crises among the people and communities in the council area.
In the petitions addressed to the Governor and the Director of Department of State Services, DSS, through their lawyer, Barr. Femi Emodamori and a copy made available to newsmen on Thursday, the traditional rulers in Akure North, said steps by the Deji of Akure is planning to install another Olu or Traditional Head in Ilado-Igbatoro any time from now, even when the Olu of the Community who has been on the throne since 1987, Chief Kayode Johnson Ajomole (J.P) is still alive, and inspite of the fact that the Deji clearly lacks the power to do so under the Chieftaincy Laws of Ondo State.
The petition reads: “You would recall that Our Clients have written series of letters to the your office as well as other relevant government and security agencies in Ondo State on the persistent aggression by the Deji in installing, most often, rival chiefs and Olus in communities which are now in Akure North Local Government, under the purported exercise of “Consenting Authority”.
Interestingly, the term “Consenting Authority” had been abolished in the State as far back as 1981 vide Paragraphs 10 and 11 of the Ondo State Government White Paper on Morgan Chieftaincy Review Commission, a copy of which is attached hereto as Annexure A, for ease of reference.
“According to our clients, the perennial acts of provocation by the Deji of Akure in this regard had caused the State Government to write him a letter with reference number CD/C6/9/20/T/212, dated 19th April, 2021 and signed by the Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, categorically directing the Deji to stop installing minor chiefs in communities in Akure North Local Government, and further directing the Kabiyesi to reverse such improper appointments. We have attached a copy of the letter as Annexure B.”
It noted that, “as a matter of fact, one Adeolu Austin Efotan, a Lawyer in the Ministry of Justice, recently issued a very questionable and controversial Legal Advice which misrepresented the judgment of the Ondo State High Court in Suit AK/28/2017, and claimed that the Court declared the Deji of Akure as the “Prescribed Authority” (which is different from the abolished Consenting Authority) of some communities in Akure North Local Government.
“Instructively, the Court held in that judgment that the Deji is not claiming to be a Prescribed Authority beyond his Akure South Local Government, contrary to the false claims in the Legal Advice that the judgment declared the Deji as the “Prescribed Authority” of some communities in Akure North, Akure South and even Ifedore Local Governments.
“However, the Legal Advice has now been graciously withdrawn vide another letter dated 29th April, 2022 written to the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs and personally signed by the Honourable Attorney-General, following protest letters written by Our Clients that the Legal Advice was not only sub judice but based on completely fabricated or misrepresented facts and terms of the judgment. A copy of the letter by the Honourable Attorney-General withdrawing the questionable legal advice is attached hereto as Annexure C.”
According to them, “Based on Annexure C, therefore, the extant position of the State Government that the Deji of Akure should stop appointing any minor chief(s) in Akure North Local Government definitely subsists.
“According to Our Clients, Chief Kayode Johnson Ajomale (JP) had been installed as the Olu of Ilado-Igbatoro since 1987 (over 34 years ago) and he is still alive, hale and hearty. In fact, he is the current Chairman of the Registered Trustees of Association of Olus and Baales in Akure North Local Government and a member of the Chieftaincy Committee of the Local Government”.
The traditional rulers explained that the planned installation of a rival Olu or Traditional Head in the same Ilado-Igbatoro by the Deji is a move that is deliberately calculated to instigate monumental chieftaincy and communal crises in both Akure South and Akure North Local Governments as well the State in general.
“Our Clients are calling on your office to urgently intervene to avert the looming crises, considering the highly sensitive and explosive nature of chieftaincy issues, particularly when it is not properly handled”, the Monarchs added.