It appears the crisis rocking the administration of local government areas(LGAs) and local council development areas(LCDAs) in Oyo State will soon be a thing of the past as the state government has opted for an out-of-court settlement with the sacked council chairmen.
It would be recalled that the chairmen who were removed from office on May 29, 2019 by Governor Seyi Makinde, recently went back to resume in their various offices despite the governor setting up a caretaker committee for the LGAs and LCDAs in December.
The sacked chairmen said they relied on the pronouncement of the Supreme Court and a letter written to the governor by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN) to forcefully return back to their respective offices..
The action of the chairmen prompted the state government to obtain an injunction from the Oyo State High Court last week, which restrained the council chairmen, Inspector General of Police, Attorney General and Minister of Justice among others from taking further action on the matter.
But at the resumed hearing of the matter on Wednesday, counsel to the state government, Dr. Akin Onigbinde (SAN), informed the court that the government has decided to adopt an out-of-court settlement for the sake of peace and would come back to the court if the strategy failed.
On their part, counsel to the defendants, Niyi Akintola (SAN) and Kunle Sobaloju, said their clients would not accept any impediment against smooth dispensation of justice. They maintained that it would be necessary that all cases on the suspension of the council chairmen be dispensed with before the out-of-court settlement idea could work.
The presiding judge, Justice Mashud Abass, commended the counsels for their disposition and cautioned all parties to ensure that peace reigns in Oyo State, assuring both parties that the judiciary would remain neutral on the matter and ensure that justice prevails.
The court has, however, adjourned the case till February 12, for the parties to report back on the level of progress on the out-of-court settlement or the continuation of the case.