|[FILES] Kirikiri road|
The Lagos State government has affirmed the selection of Chief Anthony Folami for the stool of Baale of Kirikiri in Oriade Local Council Development Area (LCDA).
The government said its decision followed “painstaking deliberation and examination of the Obas and chiefs law, and customary law of the community (Kirikiri).”
It also said a full-fledged committee set up on the matter identified Agunbiade and Folami ruling houses as those eligible to produce a candidate for the position.
The two ruling houses had petitioned the government against a certain man who was laying claims to the stool. The petitioners, through their lawyers, Taiwo Lakanu & Co, affirmed they were the legitimate royal families and traced their ancestry to Chief Tumbulu, who became the first Baale of Kirikiri town in 1893.
The ruling houses, more so, accused the man of usurping the stool, despite not being entitled to the royalty. The man, as they stated, “wandered into Ebute (waterside) area of Kirikiri town to make a living by assisting sand dredgers and sand buyers to load sand into tippers.”
During this time, the alleged usurper met Gilbert Cardoso, who was from one of the land-owning families in Kirikiri and Cardoso reportedly took him in “and accommodated him as an errand boy.” During his lifetime, Cardoso was said to have leased swathes of land to certain Chiefs Mosheshe and Akhere. The petitioners said upon Cardoso’s mysterious death, the man claiming the stool made himself the prime agent of the family land. He was also said to have set members of the Mosheshe family against one another and made himself their land agent.
The Cardoso family eventually removed him as their land agent, but he continued to function as same. He later allegedly manipulated the system through the assistance of some local government officials and pronounced himself as the Baale.
The inhabitants of Kirikiri said they were tired of constant intimidation, oppression, and harassment in the community.
A prominent member of the community told newsmen that “this man is from Ijebu-Ode and never a prince, not from any of the ruling houses and cannot lay claims to the stool of the royal family. We are glad the rule of law has finally prevailed. We can now sleep with our eyes closed in Kirikiri. We are grateful to the government and all the people involved in making sure that the truth prevailed at last.”
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