Court removes Obalufe, orders Ooni Ogunwusi to replace him in 21 days

An Osun State High Court presided over by Justice Foluke Awolalu on Wednesday removed the incumbent Obalufe of Ife, Chief Idowu Adediwura, and directed the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, to, within 21 days, replace the chieftaincy with a candidate from the Aga Ruling House.

Obalufe is the traditional prime minister of Ife kingdom and he is next to Ooni in rank.

Delivering judgement on the suit filed by Abayomi Elugbuji on behalf of self and the Aga Ruling House, Justice Awolalu held that the installation of Adediwura was not in conformity with the provisions of Ife Chieftaincy Declaration of 1957.

The court had earlier dismissed the preliminary objection filed by Adediwura seeking that the matter be dismissed because there were similar cases already instituted on the same matter.

On the merit of the case, the court held that going by the Ife Chieftaincy Declaration of 1957, it was the turn of Aga Ruling House to produce Obalufe and not Ajagbusiekun, where Adediwura that was eventually installed hails from.

The court also restrained Adediwura from parading self as Obalufe.

Commenting on the matter, counsel for the plaintiff, Mr Babafemi Akande, described the judgment as “sound and clear,” adding that a Chieftaincy Declaration once registered had become the law.

“The law is very clear, nobody is above the law and no one is below it. So the judge gave the judgment in accordance with the dictates of the law,” Akande said.

Efforts to get Adediwura’s reaction to the judgment proved futile, as calls to his phone number rang out, while text message sent to him was not replied as of the time of filing this report.

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