By Babajide Okeowo
Members of the Olubadan-In-Council have withdrawn their suit challenging the consent judgment that nullified their elevation to beaded crown-wearing Obas to end the controversy and delay in enthroning a new Olubadan of Ibadan land.
According to The Nation, the High Chiefs were said to have formally written to the Court on Monday of their intention to withdraw the suit.
In the letter of withdrawal under reference, the High Chiefs said “the withdrawal became important in order not to truncate the peace enjoyed in Ibadan”.
In the letter dated 30th January 2022 signed by all the eight High Chiefs promoted as Royal Majesties by the late Governor Ajimobi, they said that “future reforms or reviews to the Olubadan Chieftaincy Declaration of 1957 should be kept in view for now”.
The promoted High Chiefs, who signed the letter were Balogun of Ibadanland, Owolabi Olakulehin; Otun Balogun, Tajudeen Ajibola; Osi Balogun, Lateef Adebimpe and Ashipa Balogun, Kola Adegbola.
Those who signed on the civil line were the Olubadan designate, (Otun) Dr. Lekan Balogun; Ashipa Olubadan Eddy Oyewole; Ekerin Olubadan, Biodun Kola-Daisi and Hamidu Ajibade who is the Ekarun Olubadan.
The High Chiefs indicated that the review of the 1957 Declaration would be addressed during the tenure of the new Olubadan
The latest development is expected to speed up the process of enthroning High Chief Lekan Balogun, who has been declared as the Olubadan -designate.
Governor Seyi Makinde who is the consenting authority, withheld his assent to Balogun’s nomination, further holding up the processes.
Recall that the consent judgment had nullified their 2017 elevation through a review of the 1959 Olubadan Chieftaincy Declaration.
The review, which was carried out by the administration of the late Governor Abiola Ajimobi, elevated High Chiefs and some Baales as Obas.
But one of them, the Osi Olubadan High Chief Rashidi Ladoja, challenged the review in court.
He did not receive beaded crown along with his colleagues on August 27, 2017.
The late Olubadan Oba Saliu Adetunji also challenged the review in court.
They argued that only the Olubadan, and not the government, has the right to review the chieftaincy system.
But the High Chiefs challenged the judgment in court, saying they did not participate in the agreements that produced the consent judgment.
The legal issue has created a controversy on who succeeds Oba Adetunji since his demise on January 2.
While Ladoja and others insisted that the next-in-line High Chief Lekan Balogun cannot be enthroned because of the suit, Balogun and other High Chiefs insisted that the 2017 review and the Court case did not affect the traditional succession as laid down in the chieftaincy declaration.
It took Governor Makinde’s intervention for both sides to reach a truce.
After the meeting with the Governor, the High Chiefs met and agreed to withdraw the suit to allow a peaceful succession.