Festering Obaship tussles in three communities in Osun took a new turn on Tuesday.
Leaders in one of the communities, Iree, expressed support for Gov. Ademola Adeleke’s reversal of the enthronement of the traditional ruler.
The “Aree-in-Council’’, Iree Council of Elders, and the Iree Progressive Association on Tuesday declared support for the Gov.
On his first day in office on Monday, Gov.Adeleke issued an Executive Order setting aside the enthronement of the Aree of Iree, the Akirun of Ikirun, and the Owa of Igbajo.
The suspension would hold pending the review of their appointments, the governor declared.
Adeleke also directed security operatives to take over the palaces of the three traditional rulers immediately.
Support for Gov. Adeleke’s decision is contained in a statement issued by the Asiwaju of Iree, Engr. Ade Afolabi and the National President of Iree Progressive Association (IPA), Engr. Oluwole Taiwo.
They stated that the governor’s decision would bring sanity to the Iree, a community in Boripe North Local Government Area of Osun.
They called on the governor to carry out proper investigation into how the Aree emerged as the traditional ruler.
They argued that Boripe North Local Development Area did not follow due process in selecting Prince Oluponle from among other contestants.
“According to custom and tradition, Iree has six kingmakers known as Afobajes (Iwarẹfa Mẹfa). Their primary assignment is to elect a new Ọba (tradition ruler) when the incumbent joins his ancestors.
“The kingmakers include the Eesa, the Ọjọmu, the Ọsọlọ, the Aogun, the Inurin and the Jagun. All these king makers, except the Eesa, are still actively alive today, but were not consulted,’’ they stated.
Signatories to the endorsement of Adeleke’s decision also stated that Iree indigenes kicked against the use of warrant chiefs in selecting the traditional ruler, contrary to custom.
“The elders observe that the use of warrant chiefs to elect an oba is alien to Iree custom and tradition.
“It is equally worrisome that the procedure of jettisoning the authentic kingmakers may likely stall the growth and development of the town,’’ they stressed.
They appealed to the governor to disregard anyone calling for the reinstatement of the Aree.
Similarly, the Olubonku Ruling House in Iree also supported and commended the governor for his decision to suspend Oba Oluponle.
In a statement by its spokesperson, Prince Ali Afolabi, the Ruling House said the decision of the governor had saved Iree from a crisis that might engulf the town following the imposition of Oba Oluponle.
He argued that before the selection of Oluponle, the kingmakers had instituted a suit at an Osun State High Court, sitting in Ikirun, asking the court to stop the immediate past administration from appointing warrant chiefs.
In another development, Pa Micheal Fajinmi, on behalf of five ruling houses in Iree, said Iree community is peaceful and orderly and urged Gov. Adeleke to allow the town to enjoy the breath of the fresh air with the new king.
He appealed to the governor to ignore politicians determined to mislead him for selfish interests on the appointment of the Aree.
He said the desire of the people of Iree was to have an oba that would preside over the affairs of the town with the fear of God and the love of the community.
He said God had provided the oba for the town with the installation of Oba Ademola Rapheal Oluponle.
Pa Fajinmi called the attention of the governor to on-going litigations at the Ikirun High Court which, he said established that no court order or process was abused as at Nov. 7, 2022 when the Aree of Iree was appointed. (NAN)
Imo Guber: LP Distances Self from Inspection of Election Materials
The Labour Party (LP) in Imo, on Tuesday, said it was not involved in the inspection of election materials conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Imo.
Reports says that INEC displayed the materials for inspection in its headquarters in Owerri on Tuesday.
The materials were displayed in obedience to a court order obtained by the LP for the inspection of Certified True Copies of documents and other materials used for the governorship election on November 11.
Applications for the inspection of the materials were submitted to
INEC by the LP, PDP, APGA and YPP.
Addressing newsmen, state LP Chairman, Mr Callistus Ihejiagwa, faulted the process of the inspection, pointing out that the parties had yet to agree on the modalities for the inspection.
Ihejiagwa expressed disappointment that although the LP had got a court order mandating INEC to make the materials available for inspection, the party could not proceed with the process as there were no agreed rules and modalities.
He distanced the party from “the flawed process”, and berated INEC for “falling below expectations“.
According to him, there was no agreed formular for the inspection.
“We are here at the behest of the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Owerri, which granted us an Order of Court to inspect the materials used for the November 11 governorship election.
“INEC failed to establish modalities for the inspection as agreed and we cannot afford to proceed with the process.
“At the moment, INEC has not told us which materials they have made available for inspection.
“As far as we are concerned, there’s no inspection going on here today,” he said.
The lawyer representing PDP, Mr Gozie Nwachukwu, described the environment and process as “disorganised, devoid of meaningful logic and not fit to serve its intended purpose“.
Nwachukwu called on INEC to reorganise itself with a view to carrying out the process in a more decent fashion so that all the stakeholders can go home satisfied.
The INEC Head of Voter Education and Publicity in the state, Mrs Emmanuella Ben-Opara, had earlier confirmed that the materials requested for inspection were all ready and waiting to be inspected.
Reports that the inspection venue was however crowded by supporters of the All Progressives Congress, who chanted solidarity songs intermittently. (NAN)
Senate to Probe Pension Fund Administrators over Unpaid Entitlements
The Senate has tasked its Committee on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes to investigate the activities of Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs) over unpaid pension.
This followed the adoption of a motiond “ on the need to address the travails of pensioners, their next-of-kin and deceased relatives over unpaid pensions, gratuities and other entitlements”, by Sen.
Presenting the motion, Chukwu said there were undue delays in payment of pensions, gratuities and other entitlements, causing sufferings and trauma to retirees.
“Due to bureaucratic bottlenecks and endemic corruption in the payment process, the situation has subjected many pensioners to abject penury.
“With some even dying in queues of protracted and never- ending verification exercises that yield little or no result whatsoever.
“The prevailing issues include the non-payment of outstanding arrears to scores of pensioners, non- enrolment of thousands of pensioners on the pension payroll, non-payment of death benefits to deserving Next-of-Kin.
“This is made worse by improper keeping of records, unscrupulous officials who demand different documents and call for similar verification exercises time and time again,” he said.
He said that the administration of the pension funds had been enmeshed in unprecedented corruption over the years with some public officers, institutions of government and even banks all complicit.
The lawmaker said that except pensioners received fair and prompt treatment, the country was unwittingly encouraging the propensity of civil servants to be corrupt.
“This is as a career in civil service is no more attractive especially as senior citizens are treated shabbily.
“It goes further to speak of our value system as any society that cannot treat its elderly citizens with care, respect and dignity advertises its disregard for values,” he said.
Chukwu said that considering the fact that senior citizens were no longer relevant in the labour market, the government must do something drastically to ameliorate the trauma and sufferings of pensioners.
“After many years of hard labour, a worker is indeed entitled to some peace and security at old age,” he said.(NAN)
Aliyu hails Appeal Court Judgment Affirming his Election as Sokoto State Governor
Gov. Ahmed Aliyu of Sokoto State has hailed the Court of Appeal judgment affirming his election.
In a statement issued by Aliyu’s Press Secretary, Malam Abubakar Bawa, the governor said the judgment was a testament to Nigeria’s impartial and just judiciary.
Aliyu attributed the victory to the will of Almighty Allah.
“We view this triumph as a divine blessing, and we commend the judiciary for upholding truth and justice,” Aliyu said.
He urged the opposition to collaborate with him to ensure development of the state.
The governor assured the public of his administration’s dedication to delivering democratic dividends.
“We remain resolute in providing an environment conducive to development in our state.
“Our commitment includes ongoing efforts to eliminate bandits and criminals through sustained military operations,” Aliyu emphasised, seeking support from all stakeholders.
Aliyu urged continued support from the public, emphasising the need for unity in achieving the state’s transformation.
He expressed gratitude to the people’s support and prayers, acknowledging their role in the state’s successes, while encouraging for more prayers, suggestions, and constructive criticisms for the state’s progress.
Reports says that Abuja appellate court upheld the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal’s ruling on Monday, confirming Aliyu’s victory in the 2023 polls.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state, dissatisfied with the governorship election petition tribunal’s decision, appealed to the appellate court, contesting Aliyu and Deputy Alhaji Idris Gobir’s victory in the 2023 election. (NAN)
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