The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu has been urged to recognize the ‘autonomous community’s stool and crown of Oba Elejigbo of Ejigbo’ as the authentic stool and crown of the Ejigbo people of Lagos State.
This was contained in a petition written and signed by the solicitor of Fadu-Onimewon family of Lagos, Barrister Kayode Makinde and submitted to the office of the executive Governor of Lagos State, the Chief of Staff to the Executive Governor, the Attorney General and Honourable Commissioner of Justice to the Lagos State Government and also the Director of Legislative drafting in the Lagos State Ministry of Justice on 13th June, 2019.
The letter reads in part, “The petition against the unjustifiable subjugation of the autonomous community of Ejigbo people to alien rule of the Ijons/the recognition and gazette of the Ejigbo stool and crown, the Oba Elejigbo of Ejigbo, Lagos State and the approval for installation of the Ejigbo crown Prince, Prince Olawale Edagbeja.”
The petition indicted Former Commissioner of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs in Lagos State, Muslim Folami of ‘erroneously concluding’ that he could not do anything about the petition which Fadun Onimewon’s family had earlier written to him to look into the lingering traditional impasse between him and the Ojon of Ijon and Ejigbo, HRM Oba Moruf Ojoola. Adding that the Supreme Court ruling setting aside the throne of Ojon of Ijan and Ejigbo needed to interpret itself. A development which the family described as ‘wrong, unfortunate and unsustainable’.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court judgement in Suit No 57/51 which the former Lagos Commissioner For Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs asked for the interpretation was used by the tribunal of inquiry into the Ojon of Ijan and Ejigbo’s chieftaincy matters in Oshodi/Isolo Local Government of 1996/1998, VOA News gathered.
The family also described Oba of Ijon and his people as ‘trespassers’ in Ejigbo land in a dispute relating to the ownership of part of Ejigbo land where the Chief Ojon and Ijon people were given licence to reside by their ancestors. It was gathered that the then Ojan laid claim to the land by challenging the title and sovereignty of Fadun Onimewon people over Ejigbo land.
However, the Supreme Court, after taking evidence from all parties and submissions of counsels, ruled in favour of the Fadun Onimewon family in Suit No. SC/57/51.
“The Chief Ojon of Ijons in Ejigbo laid claim to the land by challenging the title and sovereignty of our clients’ ancestors over the land. The Supreme Court after evidence from all parties and submissions of Counsels, found in favour of our clients’ ancestors. The Supreme Court also stated expressly in the judgement that the Ijon land is about 5 to 8 miles away from Ejigbo, and that the name of the title of the Ijon people’s Chief is the “Ojon”. The Ijons traditionally reside until date at Ayobo in Alimosho Local Government of Lagos State and some of them; whose ancestors ran to Ejigbo are still in Ejigbo as strangers or settlers.
The Supreme court in the judgement also stated Ejigbo land which the Chief Ijon and his people resided is not theirs but that of the Ejigbos, thereby pronouncing the Ijons and their Chief Ojon, trespassers in Ejigbo Land.”
The family, however advised the Lagos State Government to apply the tradition and custom on the matter of the chieftaincy issue, and also apply the full weight of the decision of the Supreme Court in Suit No. SC/57/51 to reject the unjustified approval of Ijons’ Chief Ojon as the Oba of Ejigbo and recommend the approval of the Ejigbo stool and crown.
The panel of inquiry in Lagos State which approved the appointment of Ojon of Ijon and Ejigbo, Oba Moruf Ojoola was asked to be set aside and a fresh panel of inquiry that will involve all stakeholders be set up to look into the lingering tussle between the Fadun Onimewon on behalf of Ejigbo people and Oba Moruf Ojoola.
“His Excellency, Executive Governor of Lagos State will not hesitate to do the needful by reversing the erroneous finding of the Chieftaincy panel of inquiry and the acceptance of government, the subsequent approval, gazette of the stool and crown of the stool and crown of the Ejigbos. Your Excellency Sir, your government can therefore redeem itself by setting up a fresh panel that will invite all stakeholders in Ejigbo in the light of the illuminating and instructive decision of the Supreme Court under reference and in strict adherence to and observance of Ejigbo tradition and custom.”
However, call has been made to the Lagos State Government to recognize the Ejigbo autonomous community’s stool and crown of the Oba of Ejigbo as the authentic stool and crown of the Ejigbos, approve and gazette the stool/ crown of Oba Elejigbo of Ejigbo kindgom and also approve the installation of the Oba(elect) of Ejigbo, Prince Olawale Edagbeja as Oba Olawale Edagbeja (Adebosipo, Olaobi 1), Alade of Ejigbo Awori in Oshodi/Isolo Local Government area of Lagos State.