Anambra community rejects newly elected monarch, urges Soludo to cancel election

Felix Jacob
Felix Jacob
Chukwuma Soludo

A crisis is gradually brewing in Ihite Community of Orumba South Local Government Area of Anambra State, following a disagreement over the selection of a traditional ruler.

Already, some members of the community, led by the community’s traditional council, have disowned a new king, Timothy Ifurunwa, who was last weekend elected by a section of the community under the prompting of the President General, George Madu.

The community is correctly polarized into factions, with many stakeholders rejecting the process that led to the selection of Ifurunwa as king.

The community’s traditional council has petitioned Anambra State governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, urging him to intervene to avert crises in the community and to also disregard the process that led to the selection of Ifurunwa.

In the petition signed by their lawyer, Barr N.I Onyeakpa, and chiefs Ahamkonye, Daniel Ifemkpa, Anudu Ephraim, and Geoffrey Okeke, the traditional council accused the president general of the community, George Madu, of jettisoning the constitution in the selection, just to favour his candidate.

Parts of the petition read: “Ihite town in Orumba South Local Government Area of Anambra State lost their traditional ruler, Igwe, B.O. Ofu in 2020.

“Under Ihite native law and custom, after two (2) years of transition to glory by the Royal Father, there shall be a joint meeting of the Ihite traditional council and the town union wherein the two important bodies in the town will discuss how a new king or traditional ruler of the town should be elected.”

Onyeakpa urged Soludo not to issue a certificate of recognition to the newly elected monarch, Ifurunwa.

He said it was a surprise to the community that Madu could continue with a selection process, even when his authority to singlehandedly select a monarch and sideline the traditional council of the community was still being determined by the court.

He said: “Our clients filed suits in both customary court and magistrate court challenging the purported dissolution of Ihite traditional council by the President General, and the illegal process of selection, nomination, and screening of a would be traditional ruler of Ihite without reference to the traditional council of Ihite.”

Two members of the traditional council who spoke with journalists, Chief Geoffrey Okeke and Onowu Dominic Ahamkonye, called on Soludo to nullify the process, and not be deceived into issuing a certificate of return to the new monarch.

Meanwhile, in his reaction, the president general of the community, Madu who spoke to journalists, insisted that the process was right.

He said there were only a few disgruntled people in the community who were unhappy, insisting that the process was transparent.

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