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Anambra Elders Condemn Obiano for imposing rapist, undesirables as community leaders

From Chuks Collins, Awka

Elders, Regent lampoon Obiano for imposing rapist, undesirables as community leaders
*as Ideani community Leadership tussle deepens
*Crisis Mars Caretaker inaugural meeting

Elders and citizens of Ideani community in Idemili North Council of Anambra state have at the weekend sent a desperate save-our-soul message to Gov Willie Obiano to save the sleepy community from an impending crisis currently creeping into their midst as a result of the unilateral introduction of what they described as “a Caretaker executive comprised of strange characters”, to pilot the affairs of the community.

Leading the call on the state government to rescind its composition of the caretaker leadership was the chairman of the Regent and chairman of the community’s Igwe-in-Council cabinet, Chief Sylvester Okafor who addressed journalists who were on hand to witness the inaugural meeting of the new executive.

Save for the timely intervention of some elders and security officers of the Department of State Services(DSS) it would have been a massive bloody destruction of lives and property at the community’s Civic Centre when a section of the citizens insisted they must express their views when they were prevented from addressing the gathering. Apparently the caretaker team was suspicious of their intentions.

The ding-dong crisis which held up take off of proceedings started when the visibly vexatious Caretaker committee headed by Mr Remmy Okpoko who read out the letter from the state government which set them up prevented those who raised objections from speaking.

Okpoko had hardly taken his seat when questions started flying from different directions probing the source of the list of the caretaker members. They alleged that it couldn’t have come from one who wished Ideani well but from someone with sinister motive and aim. They accused the government and whoever that drew up the list of insensitivity, pointing out that a named key member of the committee has been banned from religious, traditional and cultural responsibilities in the community for abominably having carnal knowledge of one of his own daughters; consequently the Catholic Church has de-knighted him and he’s literally sent out of public office. Another member, Chief Theo Ikenwa has been on suspension from the community’s Igwe-in-council’s cabinet for conduct considered unbecoming of a high traditional chief. While Chief Egbuna Atuokoye in concert with another, dragged the community to court over issues bothering on leadership. The case is still pending in a high court of the state.

Chief Okafor, was sharp and direct on the stand of the Igwe’s cabinet when he said, “Ideani do not recognize the Caretaker committee. We were never consulted and didn’t make input to its membership. It’s like a list drawn by one or two faceless persons hence full of the wrong characters. So why should anyone who meant well for the people gather people with the negative baggage listed above to oversee the peace and progress of the same community. It’s sacrilegious…”

According to him, the cabinet which I chair has been in-charge of Ideani since our Igwe joined his ancestors. We ought to vet and make input in the list. The state government should dissolve them and allow the community to nominate a robust team”.

Taken up on the obvious rejection from virtually all quarters, its vice chairman, Chief Egbuna Atu-Okoye said the Caretaker committee was a wise creation of the state government. That the tension and crisis was a misplaced suspicion that they would dabble into the knotty issue of selection of a new traditional ruler to replace the late Igwe Humphrey Okoye whose last ofala was celebrated about two years ago.

Chief Cletus Uwaezuoke assured the citizens that from experience and records, no caretaker team anywhere dabbles into the issue of selection of a new Igwe. That the Okpoko committee’s terms of reference was clear and unambiguous.

But Chief Ernest Enenwa who did not hide his fears about the likely motive of those contrived the list said he want to ensure that all segment of the community was involved and carried along every step of the way.

A group of citizens had earlier written the state government saying, “We, the concerned Ideanians are terribly disturbed by the present
development that we are seeing now and felt saddened that the
Government stand appears to be an open invitation to crises,
breakdown of Law and order that could lead to colossal failure in
restoring peace and tranquility in our town…”

They had accused Gov Obiano of stoking crises in no fewer than twenty named communities presently out of sheer arrogance of power and obstinacy and therefore appealed for caution in the Ideani matter. The communities include Awa, Nkpor, Nando, Nsugbe, Omasi, etc

Chuks Collins


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