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A/Court orders fresh trial of Ekiti monarch’s suit

Justice Boloukuromo Moses Ugo of the Court of Appeal, Ado Ekiti Division, yesterday ordered fresh trial of the suit filed by the Edemo of Ado…

Justice Boloukuromo Moses Ugo of the Court of Appeal, Ado Ekiti Division, yesterday ordered fresh trial of the suit filed by the Edemo of Ado Ekiti, Chief Bamidele Aduloju, to restrain the Ewi of Ado Ekiti, Oba Rufus Adejugbe, from suspending or deposing him.
Justice Boloukuromo Moses Ugo also set aside the judgment of an Ado Ekiti High Court which dismissed the suit, saying the lower court was wrong in its decisions on Aduloju’s statement of claim and statement of oath and consequent dismissal of the suit.
Aside the judge, other members of the panel are Justices Adzira Msheila and Ayobode Lokulo-Sodipe.
In the unanimous judgment, Justice Ugo said: “The said suit is hereby restored to the Cause List of the Ekiti State High Court for trial on its merit by any other judge beside O.I.O Ogunyemi that the Chief Judge may deem fit to assign it”.
Justice Ogunyemi of an Ado Ekiti High Court had last year dismissed the suit, no HAD/226/2011, saying Aduloju’s statement of claim did not disclose a reasonable cause of action and that his witness statement on oath accompanying his originating processes was fundamentally defective.
But Aduloju, through his lawyer, Olalekan Olatawura, filed the appeal to challenge the dismissal by the lower court of the suit, praying the Appeal Court to determine whether Aduloju’s statement of claim truly did not disclose a reasonable cause of action.
Olatawura also urged the Appeal Court to determine whether the lower court was correct when it held that Aduloju’s only witness statement on oath was defective and liable to be struck out.
Counsel to Oba Adejugbe, Afolabi Fashanu,  urged the Appeal Court to resolve the issues against Aduloju, saying that the lower court was right when it struck out his (Aduloju’s) statement of claim and dismissed the suit.
The Appeal Court, in its judgment resolved all the issues in Aduloju’s favour, saying he was entitled to fair hearing and that the matter should be heard on its merit.
In the original suit, HAD/226/2011, instituted in 2011, Aduloju, is, among others, seeking a perpetual injunctive order restraining Oba Adejugbe, his agents, servants or privies from suspending him or deposing him as the Edemo of Ado Ekiti.
The chieftaincy matter was fallout of a land dispute involving the Idemo Quarters in Ado Ekiti on the one hand and the Baisaya family of Ado Ekiti and the Ado Ekiti monarch on the other hand.

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