Rights Group Drags Ogun Judges Before NJC, EFCC over Graft Allegation

…As Agbotejoye Ruling House Appeals Ogun High Court Chieftency Matter Verdict

Agbotejoye Ruling house of Ihunbo in Ipokia Local government area of Ogun State, has challenged the Judgement of the State High Court of Ipokia Judicial division on the Ihunbo Chieftaincy matter at the Court of Appeal, Ibadan division.

The ruling house sought for relief to set aside the Justice S.M. Owodunni ruling aside, saying the ruling lacked merit as it was not in conformity with the Chief Laws of the State on the Obaship matter of the ancient town and the amended 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

In a related development, a civil rights organization, the Centre for Human Rights and Social Justice (CHRSJ) has dragged the few Judges of the State High Court before the National Judicial Council(NJC) and Economic and Financial Crimes Commission(EFCC) over alleged gratification, calling for thorough and credible investigation into the allegations leveled against the Judges as contained therein in a Petition Letter dated Monday 20th of May,2019.

It also alleged in the Petition that the February 26th, 2019 ruling of the Ipokia Judicial Division High Court on Ihunbo Obaship tussle, went the way of defendants as a result of growing gratification,favouritism and malpractices in the State judiciary under the immediate past State Chief Judge; Justice Olatokunbo Olopade which snowballing to the present regime of new Chief Judge, Justice Mosunmola Aarinola Dipeolu.

Among the Judges the group calls for their investigation were; immediate past Chief judge, Hon.Justice Olatokunbo Olopade (rtd), Justice S.M. Owodunni, Justice A.B.Ojelade, Justice O.S. Olusanya and Justice Adeepo and also want the investigation to be extended to few staff of the State judiciary,which they were;Alhaji R. Bidemi Mulero, Yahyah Ogundare and Miss F.A. Bello.

The group through its Executive Chairman, Comrade Adeniyi, Alimi Sulaiman had earlier sworn to an affidavit to convince the two bodies(NJC and EFCC) on the subject matter, accusing the State judiciary of official favouritism, sundry malpractices and graft in its efforts to dispense justice to the people of the State nay Nigeria.

In a statement on Thursday which copies were made available to The Street Reporters Newspaper, Comrade Sulaiman urged the NJC and EFCC to investigate the ruling of Justice Owodunni of February 26th, 2019 in respect of Ihunbo Chieftaincy matter, adding that the rights group would not in any way hesitate to continue petition the relevant government agencies with a view to righting the series of wrongs identified in the judicial arm of Ogun State.

Dissatisfied with the High Court ruling in the case suit No: HCP/16/2018, the Claimants/Appellants approached the Ibadan Appellate Court division on the 18th of April, 2019 with the ground of Notice of Appeal that;the Learned trial Court erred in Law when it failed to consider and /or determine the Claimants/Appellants Exhibit “A” in arriving at his ruling.

The Claimants/Appellants in the suit were; Prince Emmanuel Olabimtan, Prince Amuda Olayode, Prince Abubakar Mulero Salako, Prince Toyin Akinyemi (Nee olabimtan), Prince Shola Fadairo and Prince Olaniyan (For themselves and on behalf of other members of Agbotejoye Ruling House of Ihunbo). While those in the defendants were;a smugglers, bunkerers and land grabber, Fatai Isiaka, Sunday Olamide, Kingmakers, Ogun State Governor, State Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy matters,State Attorney-General, Ipokia Local Government and Egbado (Yewa) Traditional Council.

Other grounds as obtained in the filled uf Notice of Appeal, seeking an “order allowing the Appeal and setting aside the ruling of Hon. Justice S.M. Owodunni made on the 26th of February, 2019 in Suit No. HCP/16/2018,to the effect that the Provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,1999(as amended), same being rejected and relied on the provisions of Chiefs Law,Law of Ogun State.

“An order directing and /or mandating the Learned Trial Judge to transfer the Case File to the Administrative Judge for re-assignment, to afford the Claimants/ Appellants access to fair hearing/Justice”, the appellants sort.

About James Ezema

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