Justice Oyebisi Folayemi Omoleye, a presiding judge of the Court of Appeal has issued an official statement to address the reports containing video and photos showing where she allegedly slapped and confronted a Redeemed church pastor over noise pollution in Ondo State.
Speaking through her lawyer, Okedinachi Nelson, Esq, the judge in an official statement said, ‘a member of the RCCG Glory Tabernacle Church, IjapoEstate, Akure assaulted a sitting justice of the court of Appeal Akure division on Wednesday, 5th of June, 2019‘.
The statement reads in full:
In the past 48 hours the social media has been awash with the fake and concocted story of how Honourable Justice O.F. Omoleye, J.C.A. purportedly invaded the Redeemed Christian Church of Glory Tabernacles, Ijapo Estate, Akure on the 5th of June, 2019 during a church Service.
The fake news further stated that the Honourable Justice attacked an aged woman who fainted and was rushed to the hospital for treatment. Nothing can be farther than the truth. The church in question is illegally built on a canal right beside the residence of the Honourable Justice where she has been living since 1984 before the foundation of the church was laid.
Ever since the emergence of the said Redeemed Church in Ijapo Estate, which is largely a residential estate, it has constituted unabated nuisance to the annoyance of the entire neighbourhood. The honourable Justice through her solicitors in a letter dated 22nd of May, 2019 and addressed to the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, complained about the noise and environmental nuisance constituted by the church.
The said letter unequivocally stated that such noise amounted to a breach of the honourable Justice’s right to quiet possession/ enjoyment of her property. The said judge, who is a widow of almost 30 years, has had continued engagements with the church (which is situated on an illegally acquired plot beside her property) in relation to the constant disturbance of peace both during the daytime and at nighttime every day of the week.
Despite various attempts to mediate peace terms with the church, the church failed severally to keep its side of agreements made. The Justice’s lawyer informed the church of the court action initiated against them on the public disturbance issue, and hence the church Pastorate and Members have been jittery.
In response to the her Lordship’s Solicitors letter, Pastor Dele Oyesola, Pastor-in-Charge of the RCCG, Ondo Province wrote a letter delivered on 6th of June, 2019 at the office of His Lordship’s Solicitors requested for date, time and venue for a meeting between the Church and the said Solicitors in respect of the acts of nuisance complained of. It is pertinent to note that in the letter written on behalf of the church, no reference was made to any of the allegations contained in the fake news being circulated by the church.
On the day in question, the Honourable Justice intended to have a peaceful stay at home but the usual nuisance and uncontrolled noise from the church would not allow her. On the instruction of her lawyer and in furtherance of her intention to gather evidence to present to Pastor Dele Oyesola, Pastor-in-Charge of the RCCG, Ondo Province at the meeting he proposed, the Honourable Justice, decided to take pictures of wares displayed for sale along and on her property , suddenly, one of the church members attacked her from behind, punched her and broke her phone. It took the intervention of her orderly to prevent them from injuring her. The other members came out in their troops cursing her and threatening to attack her.
It is unfortunate that a renowned church like the RCCG would go to extent to sponsor fake news against a sitting Justice of the Court of Appeal who has done nothing wrong but to ask that she be allowed to live in peace. We are all not oblivious of the nuisance that churches and other places of worship constitute in residential areas.
This fake story gained traction simply because the church is all out to harass and bully her. Rather than continue in this campaign of calumny against her, the RCCG should purge itself of the unabated nuisance particularly because the entire Ijapo Estate residents are tired.
Okedinachi Nelson, Esq
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