- Kogi state high court in Lokoja said Chief Solomon Owoniyi must not parade himself as the paramount ruler of Kabba pending the determination of the case
- Governor Yahaya Bello is said to have appointed Owoniyi as the Obaro of Kabba following the death of Oba Michael Olobayo
- First defendant’s lawyer M.A Aliu, however, objected to Rabanah’s submission, saying at no time did his client disobey the court order restraining him
A Lokoja high court has ordered the governor of Kogi state, Yahaya Bello, not to proceed further with the planned coronation of Chief Solomon Owoniyi as the new Obaro of Kabba next week, pending the determination of the case.
Governor Yahaya Bello, on July 27, appointed Owoniyi as the Obaro of Kabba following the death of Oba Michael Olobayo in May 2016 but the Ilajo royal family, consisting of three ruling houses, rejected Owoniyi on grounds that he was not from a royal family.
The Nation reports that the governor was accused of playing politics with the tradition and cultural values of Owe- Kabba kingdom through Obaro’s and so approached the court for redress.
When the motion on interlocutory injunction came up at the court, counsel to the claimant, Chief Haruna Rabanah (SAN), drew the attention of the court to the fact that the first defendant (Owoniyi) went ahead to carry out some traditional rites inspite of the court’s order restraining him from parading himself as the new Obaro, saying the act amounted to contempt of court.
First defendant’s lawyer M.A Aliu, however, objected to Rabanah’s submission, saying at no time did his client disobey the court order restraining him, but that the traditional rites had been carried out before the court order was issued.
Ruling on the motion, the trial judge, Justice Gwatana, said the status quo should be maintained and ordered that Owoniyi should not parade himself as the new Obaro of Kabba pending the determination of the suit.
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He also directed the state counsel to write a memo to the governor, through the office of the attorney general, intimating him of the court’s decision to stop him from carrying out the planned coronation next week, and until the final determination of the suit.
The judge also urged the state’s chief judge, Justice Nasir Ajanah, to reassign the case to another court that will in turn fix another date for hearing, as he was on vacation leave.
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com had reported that the entire Jakura town in Kogi state was plunged into mourning as the traditional ruler of the town Chief Usman Ajibola, was kidnapped, while his son, Rufai Ajibola, was killed by gunmen.
The spokesperson of the Kogi state police command, William Ayah, confirmed the incident to Channels Television on Tuesday, July 17.
The monarch and his son were returning from Oworo town when the kidnappers attacked them within Imo and Igbonla communities about 15 kilometres to Jakura town.
There is light at the end of the tunnel - Ooni of Ife - on NAIJ.com TV: