By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan.
The legal battle on the property of the Late Premier of Western region, Chief Samuel Ladoke Akintola continued on Thursday as the two surviving children of the Late Premier asked
the judge hearing the suit to disqualify herself.
Justice Ladiran Akintola of the Oyo State High Court in the suit is challenging Dr. Bimbo Akintola and Chief Abayomi Akintola that as a biological son of the former Premier of the defunct Western Region, he (Honourable Justice Ladiran Akintola), deserve shares and remittance of the estate of their father.
At the resumed hearing of the suit, counsel to Dr. Bimbo Akintola and Chief Abayomi Akintola (the defendants), Barrister Olaseni Oyefeso filed two fresh applications before Justice Aderonke Aderemi, seeking a leave of the court to re-call the witnesses who testified in favour of the claimant, Justice Akintola and another to disqualify herself, citing bias in her handling of the case.
However, Counsel to Justice Akintola, Barrister Biodun Abdul-Rahman objected to the application, citing various authorities in defence of his claim while the Principal state counsel led by Mrs Jumoke Abu-Okolo did not raise any objection.
Justice Aderonke Aderemi after listening to the two counsels adjourned ruling on the two applications to December 9, 2016.
Speaking with newsmen after the suit was adjourned, counsel to Dr Bimbo and Chief Abayomi Akintola, Barrister Oyefeso, on behalf of his clients said “basically, where we are now is that we are asking the Judge to disqualify herself with the conduct of the case on the ground of alleged bias”.
“I brought an application on behalf of our client- Akintola. The family is alleging that because the claimant is a Judge of the same court, they are working in contact against them. It is an allegation which I am not part of, that is the position of my clients which I am ventilating on their behalf,” he said.
Barrister Oyefeso added “this case is about a sitting Judge, Honourable Justice Ladiran Akintola who claimed to be a biological child of the late politician and Premier of the Western region, late Chief Samuel Ladoke Akintola. So, the two surviving children of the late politician; Dr Bimbola Akintola and Chief Abayomi Akintola were sued as defendants, asking for his shares of the vast estate of Chief Akintola. That is the bone of contention. He is saying that as the biological son, they have to render account and that his entitlement be paid in past remittances and those that should have come to him and future remittances and the shares of the estate.
“They said the Judge is in a surreptitious communication with the claimant who is her colleague and that there is absolute bias in the case. Five witnesses testified in support of the claims of the claimant.”
They (Bimbo and Abayomi Akintola) had already written to the Chief Justice of the state to transfer the case file on the ground of bias, so the Judge continues in the case and discharge those witnesses without being cross examined by their counsel. Now, we have come back to recall these witnesses for cross examination, she refused the examination, we came back again to seek leave to recall these witnesses and the application asking her to disqualify herself and remit the case file back to the Chief Justice of Oyo state for reassignment to another Judge of the court”.
He stressed further that “in summary, our application is one; the leave of court to recall the witnesses who testified in favour of the claimant – Justice Ladiran Akintola. Secondly, to ask the Judge to disqualify herself and remit the case file to the CJ of Oyo state for assignment to another Judge.”
By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan.