• Group slams suspension on him
Chuks Onuoha, Umuahia; Raphael Ede, Enugu
President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief John Nnia Nwodo, has disowned a purported leadership of Ohanaeze Youth Wing.
Nwodo’s action was against the backdrop of an alleged “suspension” slammed on him, by the youth wing, last week.
Yesterday, Nwodo said the youth wing of the apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation has no leadership for now and so, could not have served a vote of no confidence in him.
Besides, Nwodo, who reacted through his Special Adviser, Chief Emeka Attamah, described them as “attention-seekers.”
Regardless, Nwodo’s “suspension” was contained in a statement sent to newsmen, yesterday.
Those whose names appeared on the statement include Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, President, Ohanaeze Youth Wing, Mazi Okwu Nnabuike, Secretary General, Ohanaeze Youth Wing, Obinna Adibe, National PRO Ohanaeze Youth wing, and one President General, Ohanaeze Igbo Women Organisation, Chief Calista N. Adimachukwu.
Last week, the group passed a no confidence vote in Nwodo and also served him seven-day ultimatum to appear before a disciplinary committee, to answer allegations against him, which include running a one-man executive, partisanship and lack of transparency.
But, Nwodo replied that the group had long been disbanded by Ime-Obi, which is the highest decision-making body of Ohanaeze.
“For the avoidance of doubt, while the leadership of Ohanaeze Youth Wing was dissolved in 2016, by the Ime-Obi and the National Executive Council of Ohanaeze, the tenure of the women wing expired with the last executive in 2017, thereby making both of them defunct.”
He also stated that the statement served as notice to all media and governments that the so-called Ohanaeze Youth Wing does not exist and that new executives for the two wings would soon be elected and inaugurated.
“The National Executive of Ohanaeze Ndigbo exists at the instance of the General Assembly which hasn’t passed a vote of no confidence in it” and added that the office of Ohanaeze has been inundated with letters and messages on how well they have been leading Ndigbo.”
Attamah stated that the president general is the only person among the executive prohibited by the constitution from participating in party politics, and that “it is preposterous to imagine Chief Nwodo could romance any political aspirant let alone determine his choice of a running mate.”
Subsequently, Ohanaeze announced that elections would be conducted for the dissolved Ohanaeze Youth Wing and Ohanaeze Women Wing on April 20 and 21, respectively.
But, the “Ohanaeze Youth Wing” led by Isiguzoro announced that with the seven-day ultimatum having expired without Nwodo’s response, they now “suspend” him from office.
When contacted to respond to the “suspension,” Nwodo, who spoke through Attamah, again, wondered why “the media should be giving relevance to a non-existent group.”
He insisted that elections into the youth and women wings of Ohanaeze would take place as planned.
Attamah, however, asked: “Ohanaeze youth wing and the main Ohanaeze body; who will suspend the other?”