Eze Aro Tussle:Abia Commissioner Denies State Govt’s Involvement, Says Gov Otti Does Not Have A Preffered Candidate


Abia State Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Prince Uzor Nwachukwu, has refuted claims that Governor Alex Otti has a preferred candidate in the Eze Aro enthronement dispute in Arochukwu LGA.


Prince Nwachukwu made the clarification while addressing Journalists at Government House Umuahia in company of the Commissioner for Information and Culture Prince Okey Kanu and other members of the Executive Council who rose from the maiden New Year Executive Council meeting chaired by Governor Alex Otti.


Nwachukwu emphasized the Governor Otti’s disinterest in the selection process, highlighting the focus of the state government in ensuring adherence to community laws for peace.


He said; “Governor Alex Otti has no interest in who emerges as the Eze Aro, he has no interest in the process. He is only trying to ensure that the people obey the laws they instituted by themselves”

What the government is trying to do is to ensure peaceful and harmonious existence in every community according to the laid down rules and laws.


“These rules and the procedures of who emerges as Eze Aro, were enacted by the people, not the government and they submitted it as part of their laws that govern their community.


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The Commissioner who recounted Governor Otti’s attempt to mediate between the disagreement, clarified the traditional process of Eze Aro selection involving families.


He further detailed the government’s intervention due to procedural discrepancies, including the role of the Eze Ibom Isii his subsequent suspension.


“For an Eze Aro to emerge, he must emerge from any of the families that could produce a king. There are two families in contention in this instance, and once the king makers screen those who have presented themselves, whoever they choose, they now present to the Eze Ibom Isii whose duty is to do the crowning.


“The duty of the Eze Ibom Isii is to do the crowning ,his duty is not to choose. Now the committee ,whose duty is to do the selection, finished with their selection. They had a candidate but the candidate they produced was not the one that the Eze Ibom Isii chose to crown.


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So at the time that the Eze Ibom Isii choose the candidate as against the people whose traditional authority was to produce a candidate, they raised alarm and wrote a petition to the Government.


“His Excellency called these people to sit down and resolve their issues. And the two people came together and were unable to resolve their issues. They went back and fixed different dates for coronation. One fixed his own on 24th the other on 26th and government said both of you cannot go ahead.


“If the Governor has any interest, he would have told his preferred candidate to go ahead and hold coronation. This prompted me to write a letter to the Police and the two individuals involved were forced to reconsider their positions.


“Even at that, one of them still went ahead and had his coronation done in the secret.


“It was at that point that a petition was written that the government told the Eze Ibom Isii to suspend what he was doing and go back to the process and follow the procedure as established by the tradition of his people which he flouted”.


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Nwachukwu stated that following the Eze Ibom Isii failure to rescind his decision, he was suspended by government according to the law while an administrative panel of inquiry was set up by the state government to look into the matter.


He disclosed that the has concluded its investigation, adding that government is set to review and release a white paper based on its findings.