Oyo State High Court sitting in Ibadan, the State capital, has adjourned a suit filed by the State Government seeking to restrain the sacked Chairmen of Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) from forcefully taking over the Councils in the State.
The Court, presided by Justice Mashood Abass, adjourned the matter till Friday, March 20, 2020, to further allow the parties in the crisis to pursue the option of amicable settlement.
The option of amicable settlement was kick-started following an application for out-of-court settlement filed on February 5, 2020 and an earlier extension of time to pursue the out-of-Court settlement was given on February 12, 2020, following another adjournment.
The State Government had earlier secured an interim injunction restraining the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Inspector-General of Police, the Commissioner of Police, Oyo State Command, the State Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the 68 sacked Chairmen of Local Governments and LCDAs from forcefully taking over the Local Government Secretariats in the State, pending the hearing of the matter on notice.
Justice Abass gave the ruling on the adjournment on Friday, February 21, 2020, following presentations from the counsels of the State Government, Chief Akin Onigbinde (SAN) and that of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON), Chief Kunle Sobaloju, in which both parties agreed that progress was being made on the out-of-court settlement option being explored by the parties.
In his submission, the counsel to the State Government said the parties were making progress, noting that the Government has made its offer to the relevant parties and that time should be given for proper consideration.
Similarly, the ALGON Counsel informed that his client had been handed the Government’s terms of settlement, noting that the sacked Chairmen would make their proposal known to the Government before the next adjourned date.
Chief Sobaloju maintained that the sacked Chairmen would make their terms known to the Government, saying, “we are going to make our terms known to them. If our terms are acceptable to them, why not? All parties must encourage the spirit of settlement. The only way there will be no settlement is if both sides are not prepared to yield to one another.