Obi of Onitsha/Soludo feud: Commissioner, two others may be sacked – Insider


By Kamsi Anayo 

Barring any last minute reprieve, a Commissioner and two other appointees of the Anambra state government may be sacked any moment soon.

This, it was gathered, was because of their roles in the feud that ensued early this month between the state governor, Prof Chukwuma Soludo and the Obi of Onitsha- led Anambra traditional institution.

A highly placed source in the state government, who confided in our Correspondent, said the roles of the three appointees in the rift caused the state governor a huge embarrassment.

According to the source,” The last may not have been heard on the recent feud between the Anambra state government and the Traditional Rulers Council.

“Barring any last minute reprieve, arrangements have been concluded to fire no fewer than three appointees found to be neck deep in stoking that crisis.

“The embarrassment caused by the crisis will not be allowed to fester further, hence some aides would be axed.

The source mentioned a Commissioner and two local government transition committee chairmen as those pencilled to be fired.

He said the trio were accused of overzealousness in the matter.

The Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Achebe, had in an open letter to Gov. Soludo recently expressed sadness over the way the Anambra State Government had been treating the traditional rulers in the state shabbily.

Achebe, who is apparently angered by the way the monarch of Neni, in Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra State, Igwe Damian Ezeani, was suspended by the state government recently for conferring chieftaincy title on Senator Ifeanyi Ubah, in a letter authored by himself, said the government should respect the traditional institution.

The Obi of Onitsha, in the letter, amongst other things said,”Without providing evidence for your sweeping statement about trading chieftaincy titles for money you also, wittingly or not, thereby indicted the entire traditional institution of the state.

“Your press release to a global audience put the institution into disrepute when a direct circular letter to all traditional rulers as the parties of interest would have sufficed.

“The tone and language of your letter were, by any measure, a public riot act and pontification to the same majority of traditional rulers that you extolled as acting with dignity and integrity.

“The letter lacked respect and sensitivity in addressing the traditional rulers of Anambra State who, by any standard, are held in very high esteem in the comity of the traditional institutions of Nigeria and beyond.

In response to Achebe’s admonition, Soludo summoned a meeting of the traditional rulers at the Governor’s Lodge Amawbia wherein he reinstated the suspended monarch of Neni Igwe Damian Ezeani and forgave two others of their infractions.

The governor also addressed some of the monarchs’ welfare issues. The governor announced that the state government had accepted the apologies of the affected traditional rulers, and subsequently reinstated the traditional ruler of Neni, and forgave the traditional rulers of Ojoto and Aguluezechukwu.

According to the press secretary to the governor, Mr Christian Aburime“The meeting of the Anambra State Traditional Rulers was convened by Mr Governor to meet with the traditional rulers as part of a consultative meeting with stakeholders to review progress.”

“This is part of the lineup of events in the New Year, which began with a retreat for members of the State Executive Council, followed by engagements with Ndi Anambra in Lagos and the Consular-General of the US Embassy.

“About 94 traditional rulers were in attendance, despite the short notice.”

“At the meeting, the Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Achebe, in his opening remarks strongly reaffirmed the unalloyed solidarity and support of the traditional rulers for the government of Professor Soludo and assured the government that the traditional rulers stand ready to partner with the government in all its efforts to transform Anambra into a livable and prosperous homeland.

“He also expressed the wish that some of the issues pertaining to the suspension of some traditional rulers and the controversies of the last few days arising therefrom be put to a rest.

“He requested that there were other issues that the traditional rulers wish to bring to the government, and further expressed a desire to have another forum after the meeting to discuss these issues, including the welfare of the traditional rulers. He further requested for a meeting with government officials to discuss other issues of mutual interest.”

In his address, the Commissioner for Local Government, Chieftaincy and Community Affairs, Tonycollins Nwabunwanne, assured the traditional rulers that government holds them in high esteem, and look forward to continuing working with them closely.

Nwabunwanne tried to clarify some of the issues leading to the suspension of a traditional ruler and query of two others, assuring them that this was all in the spirit of ensuring law and order in the state.

He also highlighted the concerns of some traditional rulers over the composition of member of the state Traditional Rulers’ Council, informing that such concerns and similar issues were being looked into by government


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