Tuesday , 9 August 2022

Update : Legal Saga may delay appointment of new Alaafin, As Olanite royal family sued the governor, Others

The Olanite royal family sued the governor, Attorney General (AG) and Commissioner for Justice, and the Alaafin of Oyo (on behalf of the Atiba Traditional Council) in 2020.

The family is seeking, among others, an order that the ‘Alaafin of Oyo Chieftaincy Declaration’ be ammended by the Atiba Local Government Area.

The Alaafin affairs are currently under Atiba Local Government. The monarch is the head of the Atiba Traditional Council.

Though the seven-man Oyomesi is saddled with the responsibility of appointing a new Alaafin, records show that the reviewed 1961 Alaafin Chieftaincy Declaration, which was used to appoint the last Alaafin, Oba Adeyemi III, has since been declared defective by the government, for not accommodating other royal families.

The declaration, which was produced during the reign of Alaafin Bello Gbadegesin (Ladigbolu II), listed only two ruling houses – Alowolodu and Agunloye – as the recognised families to produce the Alaafin. Oba Adeyemi III was of the Alowolodu family.

But multiple petitions by other families forced the government to set up a commission of inquiry on the issue in 1975. The commission recommended that the ruling house should be only one (Atiba Ruling House) since Alaafin Abiodun Atiba, the first Alaafin, gave birth to the two royal families and others agitating for recognition and right to the throne. Only Alowolodu and Agunloye produced the previous Alaafins.

The recommendation for ammendment was approved by the State Executive Council in 1976, but with a directive to Atiba Local Government to carry out the amendment ‘to provide for only one ruling house, the Atiba Ruling House, including all the descendants of Atiba’. The decision was gazetted by the government in 2001.

Yet, the review has not been undertaken despite the white paper which declared the 1961 declaration defective, positing that ‘it did not reflect the true customary law governing appointment to the Alaafin Chieftaincy’. Oba Adeyemi III was the reigning Alaafin at the time.

Frustrated by the local government’s failure to amend the declaration, one of the agitated royal families, the Olanite, sued the the governor, Attorney General (AG) and Commissioner for Justice, and the Alaafin of Oyo (on behalf of the Atiba Traditional Council) in 2020, seeking, among others, an order compelling the amendment to be undertaken.

Next hearing in the suit, which is being heard by an Oyo State High Court is slated for today.

The Olanite family wants the court to determine ‘whether, in view of the fact that the Oyo State Executive Council in its Executive Council Conclusion, dated September 8, 1976, had found the current Alaafin of Oyo Chieftaincy Declaration defective, the same can still be said to be valid and subsisting.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Timber by EMSIEN 3 Ltd BG