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Daughters drag Ogboni society to court for hijacking king’s corpse on burial day

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After the alleged hijack of their father’s corpse, three daughters of the late the Alaye-Aba of Aba, Aiyepe in Ogun State, Oba Rauf Adebayo Raji-Suleimon, have sued the unincorporated Osugbo Society of Ijebuland (known as the Ogboni).

According to the suit filed at the Federal High Court, in Abeokuta, they are seeking N50 billion against the Ogboni Society.

Raji-Suleimon’s daughter’s stated that their father was a devoted and practising Muslim in his lifetime who performed pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina and had several awards and recognitions by Muslim Societies because of his contributions to the Islamic faith.

The claimants, Mrs Aderonke Egunjimi, Mrs Tiwalade Abass and Mrs Adeyemi Joseph, were said to have filed the fundamental rights application through their lawyer, Chief Bolaji Ayorinde SAN.

The claimants said that on January 24, 2021, the family had dug a grave, set up canopies for visitors and concluded funeral arrangements to bury their father according to Islamic rites when the members/representatives of the Ogboni society forcefully took their father’s corpse away.

The claimants accused Ogboni society of infringing on their rights to privacy and family life and depriving their father of a befitting burial.

The applicants are seeking an order of mandatory injunction compelling the Ogoni society to return the corpse forthwith to their custody at the applicants’ Family House being at No 1, Alaye Aba Street, Aba Quarters, Aiyepe, Ogun State.

They prayed the court to declare the conduct and practice of the 1st to 15th unconstitutional, illegal, vexatious, barbaric, obnoxious, immoral and repugnant to the dictates of civil order as enshrined in the constitution and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights 2004.

The applicants are further asking the court for an order restraining Ijebu Traditional Council from giving any directions or orders to the 1st to 15th respondents contrary to the reliefs sought by the applicants.

The suit listed the defendants to include:

Chief Adeleke Adetola Dako (1st defendant), Chief Mojid Ogunmefun (2nd defendant), Lekan Adekoko (3rd defendant), Chief Ebenezer Ogunlala (4th defendant), Chief Fagbola Adeniyi (5th defendant), Kazeem Adeleke (6th defendant), Taorid Jimoh (7th defendant) and Abiodun Adeleke (8th defendant).

Others are Monsuru Eleku (9th defendant), Chief Safiriyu Adeleye (10th defendant), Jamiu Salawu (11th defendant), Chief Sodiq Osiyemi (12th defendant, Chief Eji Ademeji (13th defendant), Chief Adebisi Opanuga (14th defendant, and Chief Ayo Olubukola (15th defendant), (sued jointly and severally as members and representatives of the unincorporated Osugbo Society of Ijebuland specifically in Odogbolu Local Government,  Ijebu Ode Local Government,  Ijebu East Local Government, Ijebu North Local Government, Ijebu North East Local Government,  and Ogun Waterside Local Government) and Ijebu Traditional Council (16th Respondent).

The court, however, is yet to fix a date to hear the application.

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