The Oyo State Government has sanctioned an alleged self-acclaimed Ejioku Prince, by name prince Bashiru Adesina, to stop acting as the Baale of the area.
The government described the act as ‘illegal’ the prince, having since failed to get the approval of the Governor – Senator Abiola Ajimobi – in opposition to the provisions of Chiefs Law of Oyo State of Nigeria, 2000, CAP. 28.
The commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Mr. Bimbo Kolade, in a statement showed the government’s disapproval of the development, which, according to him, is in disobedience to laid down laws as regards the appointment of Part II recognized chiefs.
Notwithstanding, some sections of the law permits such appointment, Section 20 (1) states:
“Subject to the provisions of this section, the governor may approve or set aside an appointment of a recognized chief,” the category under which the Prince of Ejioku falls.
Kolade said the government would not be lenient should the accused chief remain unmoved so as to protect the sanctity of the revered traditions of Ibadan land.
He went on to acknowledge the existence of correspondence between the ministry and Lagelu Local Government as regards the vacant Baale of Ejioku stool, he stated that the procedure had stayed inchoate, having been stalled at the local government since October, last year.
The ministry insisted that its October 17, 2016, letter to Lagelu LG, which was gotten by the Director, Administration and General Services in person of Mr. Kolawole Popoola, compelling it to bring certain documents as evidence that the due procedure had been adequately adhered to, had yet to be followed.
The ministry in that letter, had asked the local government to provide, “public notice issued by the LG on the vacant stool; certificate of appointment issued by the kingmakers (in respect of the chosen candidate); as well as the attendance sheet stating those that attended the family and the kingmakers’ meetings.”
The letter further reads:
“(You are requested to provide the) letter written to the kingmakers by the head of the ruling house, informing them of the candidate nominated for the vacant stool; and the consent letter of His Imperial Majesty, Oba Saliu Akanmu Adetunji, Aje Ogungunniso I, the Olubadan of Ibadanland.
“Please note that the required documents are to be presented before the approval of His Excellency, the Executive Governor (Senator Abiola Ajimobi), could be sought.”
The commissioner warned people that intend to become traditional chiefs to strictly comply to the legal process involved in following such route instead of cutting corners.
In his words:
“There are laid down rules and regulation guiding the emergence and installation of a traditional chief, as enshrined in the Chiefs Laws of Oyo State of Nigeria, 2000, CAP 28. This has been the guiding light for the ministry.
“It is therefore an attempt to cause anarchy in the land for anybody to start parading himself as a Baale without following the due process. We have in the recent past warned contenders to the traditional stools against flouting the extant laws.
“Experience has shown that such inordinate ambition is an invitation to breakdown of law and order, because of the acrimonious contentions among contenders to such stools. That is why laws were enshrined to guard against anarchy in the land.
“For the sake of emphasis, the state government does not recognize Prince Bashiru Adesina as the Baale of Ejioku. He is, therefore, warned to stop parading himself in such capacity till those concerned comply with due process.”
Here is what we know.