Kwara state govt vs Saraki : Court fixes date for hearing

There are indications that the expected amicable resolution of the dispute over the controversial ‘Ile Arugbo’, belonging to the Saraki family, may have collapsed.

An indication to this effect emerged Monday in Ilorin, when the two parties involved in the matter appeared before the trial judge contesting differing grounds. Justice Adebara had at the last sitting of the court on the case, January 24, 2020, urged the parties involved in the matter, Asa Investment limited and the state government to employ dialogue in resolving the issue in the interest of peace and harmony. This was followed by two reconciliation meetings between the two parties on February 6 and 11,2020. The peace talks, however, collapsed due to irreconcilable differences on the terms of amicable resolution of the dispute.  Barrister Abdulazeez Ibrahim, counsel to Asa Investment limited and Salman Jawondo, SAN, and the Commissioner for Justice representing the government, informed the court that the peace talks collapsed as a result of irreconcilable differences on the terms of amicable resolution of the matter. Asa Investment limited’s counsel mentioned his client’s terms of settlement to include “the reversal of the revocation order placed on the disputed land, reconstruction of the partially demolished structures on the land and offering apology to the aged women harassed on the night the structures were pulled down.” He said his clients were ready to go for the second and third demands in the interest of peace.

In his own submission, counsel to the state government, Jawondo said the peace talks became deadlock “when the claimants came out frontally that their demand for the reversal of the revocation order placed on the disputed land was not negotiable,” and therefore sought an adjournment of the matter. Adjourning the matter till March 25, for proper hearing of the suit, Justice Adebara commended both parties and their counsel involved in the matter, for meeting twice in the attempts to find an amicable resolution to the issue as advised by the court. In a ruling, he said “however, since the two parties had not been able to reach an amicable resolution of the dispute, the suit ought to continue and it is in this regard that the court will grant an adjournment for hearing. I hereby adjourn the case till 25th of March, 2020, for hearing.”

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