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Kingship tussle: Contestant accuses Adeleke of flouting constitution

From Lateef Dada, Osogbo

One of the contestants to the Aree throne in Iree, Boripe Local Government of Osun State, Prince Afolabi Ali, has accused Governor Ademola Adeleke of flouting the constitution to appoint Prince Muritala Oyelakin as the new monarch in the town.

Governor Adeleke, upon assumption of office, suspended Oba Ademola Oluponnle and ordered a review of the process that led to the installation of the monarch by his predecessor, Adegboyega Oyetola.

However, a White Paper was released recently and ordered a fresh selection with a condition that the kingmakers and other aggrieved parties, who had earlier dragged the state government to court over the appointment of Oba Oluponnle, should withdraw their matters in court before the fresh selection process.

But, while the court was still on strike, the state government proceeded with the fresh selection, which Ali described as a contravention to the White Paper.

Ali posited that Governor Adeleke contravened Section 20 (2) of the Chief’s Law (Cap.25) Laws of Osun State, 2002 by approving the selection of Oyelakin before the statutory 21 days.

He, thereby, approached the court, seeking nullification of the entire selection process, saying it was “a rape of the Constitution and complete fraud.”

“To ensure that this injustice and breach of the constitution do not stand, I have, through my lawyer, challenged the fresh selection in court. We have filed a case against the Governor, Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, and Prince Oyelakin, asking the court to declare the fresh selection as illegal and nullify it.”

The applicant said the Boripe North Local Government failed in its statutory duty to appoint warrant chiefs to replace the vacant kingmakers’ position, saying that out of the four kingmakers alive, two voted while the other two voted in proxy, a situation that contravenes due process and rendered the entire process illegal and unacceptable.

“The law says that after selection of a monarch might have been done, the governor shall not approve or set aside that selection until after 21 days. Recall that the selection of Oyelakin was made on February 22, 2024, while Governor Ademola approved it by issuing an approval letter to Oyelakin on March 6, 2024.

“This action by the governor makes the letter of approval illegal and a violation of the same law that Governor Adeleke swore to obey,” one of the contestants to the Aree throne from Olubonku Ruling House, Prince Afolabi Ali stated.

“If Governor Adeleke accused former governor Oyetola of not following the rule of law and breaching process, the governor has done worse by jettisoning the law, including the White Paper he issued. This is grass injustice on the good people of Iree and it should not be allowed to stand,” Ali said.

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