Obosi Chieftaincy Crisis Deepens
The crisis rocking the traditional council of Obosi in Idemili North Local Government Area of Anambra State escalated over the weekend as kinsmen of one of the allegedly suspended traditional chiefs held a meeting condemning the action of the traditional ruler of Obosi, Igwe Chidubem Iweka III.
Okpo na Ezeani family, the kinsmen of Chief Linus Mgbakogu (Attah Obosi) expressed serious concern over the numerous crisis, killings in Obosi community which they said aggravated since the enthronement of Igwe Chidubem Iweka III.
In a resolution reached by the kinsmen Saturday, signed by Nze Goddy Onubogu Chairman of the kindred and made available to newsmen described the suspension as illegal and unacceptable to the Okpo and Ezeani family.
"The so-called suspension of our highly revered Attah Obosi is illegal and unacceptable to us. Moreso, the suspension of Ndi-Ichie is sacrilegious in all ramifications, because the customs and traditions of the community bestowed a kind of immunity on them that they cannot be said to have committed ALU in Obosi land, hence they are “Ome abu Nso”. May be the Igwe is not aware of this."
"The family is also totally disappointed, disillusioned and utterly saddened that the death of our sons, which should evoke a solemn and sober reflection, is being used by Igwe to further heat-up the polity and aggravate the endemic crisis in his cabinet."
"The family regrets that this particular crisis was accentuated by partisan political position held by the Igwe. This made the situation to be handled without discretion and caution." The statement said.
Recall that the traditional ruler of Obosi, Igwe Chidubem Iweka III had accused three cabinet chiefs of committing sacrilege by bringing to the palace, bodies of two young Obosi sons allegedly shot by security operatives during the re-run election for Idemili North and South Federal Constituency.
In an emergency meeting held at the Igwe's palace, an already prepared resolution signed by one Prince Bennett Mozie was presented to journalists and read by Mozie.
Handing down the suspension, Mozie said “After due consultations and deliberations with all the relevant ancient traditional bodies of Obosi, the Igwe in council hereby announce the indefinite suspension from the Igwe's Royal Cabinet of the above mentioned Ndi-Ichie Obosi- Chief Osita Chidoka, Chief Linus Ngbakaogu and Chief Hyacinth Udemba for their act of sacrilege and the abomination they committed against the revered age old customs of the people and ancient Obosi Kingdom.”
But another faction of the council swiftly denied that there was ever a meeting where the action leading to the resolution was decided.
The Onowu of Obosi, Chief Anthony Eze Nwabude, said that there was never a meeting held in respect of the resolution, adding that since the killing of the two Obosi sons, the Igwe-in-Council had not met on the matter let alone taken any position on the issue in contention.
“Since after the incident that claimed the lives of our two young men, the Igwe-in-Council has not had any meeting where the matter was discussed before making any resolution on the matter. That is why I am against what the Igwe and some members of the cabinet did by suspending the three members of the cabinet. In fact I am not in support of the resolution,” he said.
The suspension also opened a can of worms about the validity of lgwe Chidubem Iweka’s throne as according to one of the affected Ndi Ichie, Chief Linus Mgbakogu, the throne is still in dispute and there are several litigations in the court challenging his emergence as the Igwe of Obosi.
“The resolution is a kangaroo one and there was never a time that the Igwe-in-Council met on that. He has no right to suspend any member of the cabinet. I have been the Attah of Obosi for 10 years and the emergence of the Igwe of Obosi is still in contention because there are several cases in the court challenging him."
"We have already lost confidence in him because since he became Igwe in the last five years we have witnessed series of shootouts leading to the death of over 76 Obosi youths, and this is traceable to his becoming the traditional ruler."
"He has been relating with the APGA candidate who contested against our brother, Obinna Chidoka even when the boy stormed the Awada polling units with thugs who were shooting indiscriminately and five of the cabinet members escaped death by the whisker on that election day."
“I reported the incident to Igwe and he did nothing about it and the following day, the APGA candidate was at the palace of the Igwe, holding meetings and the man that claims to be our traditional ruler has not said anything about the shooting or killings in our community.”
One of the members of the cabinet Chief Charles Umolu, in a telephone chat with newsmen said the suspension is illegal, adding that the signatory to the resolution is an impostor who is not a member of the cabinet and has no right to speak or sign any document on behalf of the cabinet members.
“The issue is not about dumping the bodies in the palace because the youths were angry over the killings; that is why they took the dead bodies to the palace.”
Chief Umolu challenged the monarch to account for the N22 million second Niger bridge compensation money paid to the community by the federal government which, according to him, the community is demanding an explanation to the whereabouts of the money.
Umolu said the traditional ruler has been involved in land grabbing and racketeering and has been cavorting with some youths in the community in the execution of this crime. Those who go to challenge him are those he has been presenting and this style of leadership has not helped the community at all.
The resolution in full:
POSITION OF OKPO NA EZEANI FAMILY OF UMUOTA VILLAGE OBOSI ON THE PURPORTED SUSPENSION OF CHIEF LINUS MGBAKOGU (ATTAH OBOSI) AND TWO OTHER NDI-ICHIE OBOSI READ BY ONE DR. BENNETH MOZIE AN IMPOSTER ON BEHALF OF EZE NA NDI-ICHIE OBOSI
The family rising from an extraordinary emergency meeting held on Saturday 30th March, 2019, necessitated by the purported suspension of our committed, dynamic and boisterous Ndi-Ichie – ATTAH OBOSI and the grievous allegations levelled against him by His Royal Majesty Igwe Chiduben Iweka III Eze Obosi. We were further informed that this decision was taken without due consultations contrary to the claims in the communiqué signed and read by Benneth Mozie who has no locus standi to sign or even speak on behalf of Eze na Ndi-Ichie Obosi.
1. The so-called suspension of our highly revered Attah Obosi is illegal and unacceptable to us. Moreso, the suspension of Ndi-Ichie is sacrilegious in all ramifications, because the customs and traditions of the community bestowed a kind of immunity on them that they cannot be said to have committed ALU in Obosi land, hence they are “Ome abu Nso”. May be the Igwe is not aware of this.
2. The family is also totally disappointed, disillusioned and utterly saddened that the death of our sons, which should evoke a solemn and sober reflection, is being used by Igwe to further heat-up the polity and aggravate the endemic crisis in his cabinet.
3. The family regrets that this particular crisis was accentuated by partisan political position held by the Igwe. This made the situation to be handled without discretion and caution.
4. The family (Okpo na Ezeani) as the custodian of ALU cleansing rites (Ikpu-Alu) in Obosi, was never consulted before declaring such action an ALU.
5. Finally, in as much as we are aggrieved over the widely publicized purported suspension of our representative in the cabinet, we urge the Igwe to initiate a peace process to resolve the crisis in Obosi which aggravated since his enthronement.
Signed on behalf of Okpo na Ezeani family
Nze Goddy Onubogu