SAYAWA ELDERS SUE BAUCHI GOVT OVER CHIEFDOM HQ
BY Suzan Edeh
Bauchi-The Sayawa council of Elders and traditional rulers in Bauchi, have dragged the state government to court over the citing of the headquarters of the Sayawa chiefdom in Martin Giji, instead of Tafawa Balewa, their ancestral home.
The suit with number BA/191/2011, was filed in the State High Court, by Honourable Bukata Zhyadi, Mr. Ahud Simon , Captain, Daniel Dodo, rtd, and Gung Iliya , on behalf of Sawaya ethnic nationality.
They sued the State Governor, Mallam Isa Yuguda and 10 others, including the State House of Assembly.
In the suit filed by their Counsel, Pius Akubu, SAN, the plaintiffs sought an order of interlocutory injunction restraining the defendants/ respondents and their agents, acting on their instruction from implementing the provisions of the recent law creating the Sawaya Chiefdom with the districts and village areas, pending the final determination of the substantive suit.
The Plaintiffs are also seeking an order, restraining the defendants/respondents from appointing districts and village heads in the new districts and in Bauchi, particularly the new Sayawa Chiefdom, pending the final determination of the substantive suit and for any such further orders, that the court may deem.
They further asked the court to make a declaration that the failure of the State Governor to assent to the two bills within thirty days, upon presentation to him by the State House of Assembly, had rendered them (bills) null and void and liable to be set aside just as they requested the court to declare that the arbitrary location of the headquarters of the Sayawa Chiefdom at Martin Giji, temporally, vide section 9 of the law creating the ''Chiefdom, instead of Tafawa Balewa town, the ancestral headquarters of the Sayawa people is inappropriate, unlawful, illegal and is against the wishes of people of Sayawa.''
Apart from these, the plaintiffs further prayed the court to direct the current Bauchi State House of Assembly, to conduct a public hearing, particularly, for the benefit of the Sayawa ethnic nationality, regarding the creation of the Sayawa Chiefdom, its headquarters, contigious boundaries and all other issues connected to it, before considering any fresh executive or private bill for the creation of the Chiefdom.
The 6th Seaaion of the state House of Assembly had on June 9, 2011, passed the bill for the creation of the Sayawa Chiefdom among other districts in the state and the bill was signed into law by the Governor, Isa Yuguda on August 8, 2011 even as the government cited the headquarters of the new chiefdom, temporally at Martin Giji, in Bogoro local Government, which was opposed to, by the Sayawa people.