The bid by 13 traditional rulers from Anambra State to meet with President Muhammadu Buhari and tender a petition against their state governor, Chief Willie Obiano, failed yesterday as the meeting was put on hold at the eleventh hour.
The traditional rulers’ visit was facilitated by billionaire businessman, Chief Arthur Eze, who has been having a running battle with Governor Obiano.
Prince Eze had accused Obiano of bad governance and also raised issues about non-conduct of local government election.
It was gathered that the meeting, which was earlier scheduled by the State Chief of Protocol (SCOP), Aso Rock Villa, to hold yesterday was cancelled following protest by some ministers from the South East.
Sources said one of the ministers, who opposed the meeting, argued that though he strongly supports expectation for the All Progressives Congress (APC) to win Anambra State governorship election in 2021, a sitting governor must be respected.
The minister said he would not support Anambra State and the Igbo people generally to be disgraced for no just cause, while advising President Buhari to reconsider his stance to meet the traditional rulers.
Sources said the minister suggested to President Buhari not to meet the traditional rulers as they were not a true representation of the state, especially as the chairman of the state’s council of traditional rulers and other prominent royal fathers were not among them.
“How can 13 traditional rulers say they represent Anambra State when Igwe Gibson Nwosu of Awka, a former Nigerian Air Force pilot and a graduate of the University of Sokoto, who is still alive and on the throne not be part of them? Monarchs like Igwe Nnaemeka Achebe, Obi of Onitsha, are not among them. This shows that those in Abuja are not representing the people,” the minister was quoted as saying.
Saturday Sun gathered that another minister from the South East also opposed the meeting on the grounds that it was a breach of protocol for the monarchs to seek to see the president without presenting for clearance the speech they intend to read at the meeting.
Last night, it was gathered, the Anambra monarchs waited at their rooms at Sheraton Hotel and Suites, Abuja, while Prince Eze worked with the president’s Chief of Staff, Professor Ibrahim Gambari, to facilitate the meeting.
It was gathered that the traditional rulers signed a petition to President Buhari where they accused Governor Obiano, among several other allegations, of embezzling the state and local government funds, which has made him not to conduct LG elections.
They accused the governor of nepotism, alleging that he surrounded himself and government with his kinsmen and family members.