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  • 2004-02-02
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Daramola vs. Governor, Osun State.

NASIRU DARAMOLA

LAYI FASESIN

(For and on behalf of Elemu Ruling House of Otan-

Ile Chieftaincy)

V

THE GOVERNOR OF OSUN STATE

THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL AND

COMMISSIONER FOR JUSTICE, OSUN STATE

CHIEF HEZEKAIAH OYEKANMI FAFIYEBI

COURT OF APPEAL

( IBADAN DIVISION )

SUNDAY AKINOLA AKINTAN, JCA ( Presided )

MORONKEJI OMOTAYO ONALAJA, JCA

OLUFUNLOLA OYELOLA ADEKEYE, JCA ( Read the Lead Judgment )

CA/I/52/94

FRIDAY, 12TH JULY, 2002

APPEAL - Appellate court - Evidence improperly evaluated by trial court - Whether appellate court can re-evaluate

APPEAL - Appellate court - When may order a re-trial

APPEAL - Findings of trial court - When appellate court may interfere

CHIEFTAINCY MATTERS - Minor chieftaincy - Appointment thereto What law governs

CHIEFTAINCY MATTERS - Recognised chieftaincy - Declaration made thereon - Whether signifies proof of customary law related thereto

COURT - Appellate court - When may order a re-trial

COURT - Trial court - Findings of trial court - When appellate court may interfere

CUSTOMARY LAW - Proof - Party relying on a custom - Need to bring corroborative evidence of another witness from the community concerned

EVIDENCE - Admissibility of evidence - Admitted evidence - How treated by court

EVIDENCE - Evaluation of evidence - Evidence improperly evaluated by court - Whether appellate court can re-evaluate

EVIDENCE - Review of evidence - Evaluation of evidence - Distinction between

JUDGMENT AND ORDERS - Order of retrial - When may be ordered by appellate court

JUDICIAL PRECEDENT - Principle stated in Kojo vs. Bonsie - Origin and purpose of

LAND LAW - Principle stated in Kojo vs. Bonsie - Origin and purpose of

LAND LAW - Traditional history - Conflict in evidence of one party -

Whether Kojo vs. Bonsie is applicable to resolve same

Issues:

1.             Whether exhibit B, conclusion extract of the Executive Council of Oyo State is of any legal significance in this case.

2.             Was the learned trial Judge right in failing to resolve the conflict of traditional history in this case by applying the test in Kojo’s case?

3.             Whether on the materials before the learned trial Judge, his decision dismissing the plaintiff’s case was justified.

Facts:

This appeal arose from a dispute as to who would occupy the vacant stool of Olotan of Otan-Ile Chieftaincy in Obokun Local Government Area of Osun State. The appellants herein as plaintiffs on behalf of Elemu ruling house sought declaratory and injunctive reliefs capable of restraining the respondents herein as well as allowing Elemu ruling house to present the next Olotan of Otan-Ile.

The plaintiffs/appellants ascribed the founder of Otan-Ile to one Itadimula, a descendant of Oduduwa who also gave birth to three children namely: Elemu, Onigbo and Libayan. These three names according to the plaintiffs/appellants represent the three ruling houses for Olotan of Otan-Ile chieftaincy. It was further asserted that it was the turn of Elemu ruling house to produce the next Olotan but the kingmakers refused to act on the candidate presented by Elemu ruling house. The respondent herein as defendants at the lower court denied the plaintiffs’ claims and rather traced the founder and first Olotan of Otan-Ile to Akindugba, a descendant of Oduduwa who gave birth to five children. Two of Akindugba’s children, Aladesoke and Adeagbo reigned as Olotan after his demise. They subsequently became the founders of Libayan and Ilesiowa ruling houses. The Ilesiowa ruling house claimed it was its turn to produce the next Olotan pursuant to a letter from the Obokun Local Government.

However, the Osun State Government accepted in part the recommendation of a panel of enquiry set up and approved only two ruling houses for Olotan of Otan-Ile chieftaincy. At the conclusion of trial and review of evidence adduced, the learned trial Judge having preferred the evidence of the defendants dismissed the plaintiffs’ claim in its entirety.

Dissatisfied with the said judgment, the plaintiffs/appellants brought this appeal.