Olubadan stool suit: Oyo CJ withdraws over petition to NJC

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By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan.
There was a mild drama at the resumed hearing of the suit by the Head of the Seriki line in Ibadan  Chief Adebayo Oyediji against the elevation and installation of Oba Saliu Adetunji as the Olubadan of Ibadanland as the Chief Judge of Oyo state, Justice Mukthar Abimbola on Wednesday disqualified himself from the case suit .
Justice Abimbola also cautioned parties in the suit not to tarnish his integrity and honour which he has built for years.
The Chief judge disclosed that his immediate withdrawal from the Olubadan stool suit followed a petition written against him alleging him of compromise in the case by the Seriki line to the National Judicial Council (NJC)
Justice Abimbola pointed out that as a result of the petition by the Seriki line, he was summoned by the NJC to defend himself after which he was absolved by the NJC.
The Chief Judge expressed displeasure at the“venom, and the very strong language” used in the petition against him and that despite the said petition, he will not harbour any bias in the matter.
He then announced that he has transfered the file for the case to the Administrative Block of the High Court for re-assignment to another Judge to handle, “in the interest of justice and to clear any doubt anywhere”.
Justice Abimbola however asked counsel to the Seriki line, Barrister Adediran to caution the petitioner to desist from the sweeping allegation, adding, “warn them very seriously not to tarnish my integrity and honour which I have built for years”.
“I have no stake in this matter and that was why I was not at the installation in the first place. I don’t attend any public function that has no legal relevance. Because of this, I am personally handing off the two cases before me for it to be re-assigned to another Judge. I bear no grudge against anyone”.
Lead counsel to the Head of Seriki line, Chief Oyediji (89), Barrister Abideen Adeniran in his brief remark in the court dissociated himself from the petition to the NJC, saying,”I only saw the petition after it had been submitted”.
“I am even seeing the letter sent to you by the NJC for the first time now. I could not have petitioned you to the NJC for any reason Sir. The claimant has sons as lawyers and because of the frayed nerves generated by the matter, several interests could have come to play”.

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