THE Osun State House of Assembly, on Tuesday, July 11, repealed the State’s Anthem, Crest and Flag Law 2012.
The law, enacted during the administration of former governor Rauf Aregbesola, introduced an anthem, a crest and flag for the state. The Aregbesola government also renamed Osun State as ‘State of Osun’.
The lawmakers repealed the law during a plenary session of the House.
The Speaker of the Osun State House of Assembly, Adewale Egbedun, disclosed the development on his Twitter page on Wednesday, July 12.
According to him, the action was taken in compliance with the judgment of a Federal High Court on December 14, 2017.
The Speaker stated that Kanmi Ajibola, a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) member of the House representing the Oriade State Constituency, filed a lawsuit concerning the incident.
“Understanding, however, that there may be some aspects of the law that are appropriate, the House agreed that all corrections made on Osun State Anthem, Crest and Flag Law 2012 form part of the Bill for Osun State Anthem, Crest and Flag Bill 2023, sponsored by the Majority Leader.
“In essence, what the House has done, is vacate a law that had already been invalidated by a Court of competent jurisdiction to pave way for a new law that will respect the letters and spirit of the Nigerian Constitution that we swore to abide by,” Egbedun stated.
Aregbesola’s administration announced the renaming of Osun State as ‘State of Osun’ in 2011.
The House of Assembly, under the leadership of the Speaker, Najeem Salam, in 2012, passed a law creating an anthem, flag and crest for the state.
The bill was passed through a motion moved by the then Chief Whip, Ipoola Binuyo and seconded by Busola Adeyeni.
The Speaker said the anthem’s approval did not threaten the Federation of Nigeria.
Salam said the bill was the official description of the state and would allow the younger generations to attach importance to the culture of the Yoruba.
However, on December 14, 2017, an Osun State High Court ruled that the renaming was unlawful and, as a result, null and void.
The “State of Osun Land Use Charge Law” was challenged by human rights activist Ajibola as unconstitutional before the court presided by Yinka Afolabi.
In his ruling, the judge, Afolabi, held that the 1999 Constitution was unaware of the law and its authors.
The judge added that Aregbesola singlehandedly renamed the state contrary to known norms and the nation’s Constitution and granted all the seven prayers of the plaintiff.
During his inaugural speech in November 2022, Osun state governor, Ademola Adeleke, ordered a swift change from “State of Osun” to “Osun State.”
He directed that all government insignia, correspondences and signages must reflect Osun State rather than the State of Osun, which he said was unknown to the Nigerian Constitution.
However, the seventh state House of Assembly rejected Adeleke’s order and declared that the adoption was “a matter of law”, and therefore, the state will continue to be referred to as the “State of Osun”.
“The State of Osun House of Assembly, having reviewed the inaugural speech of the Governor and the activities of the inauguration, hereby resolves as follows: