Obinna Odogwu, Awka
Mixed reactions have trailed the suspension of the 13 traditional rulers.
Chairman of Board of Trustees of Human Right, Liberty Access, and Peace Defenders’ Foundation (HURIDE), Dede Uzor, condemned the action of the state government.
Uzor said the government, by its action, has violated the constitutional rights of the affected monarchs as enshrined in the 1999 constitution as amended.
“It is totally unconstitutional. The state law cannot override the federal law. The state government violated chapter 4, section 33 to 41 of the constitution of Nigeria as amended which provides for freedom of movement and expression,” said Uzor.
A former governor of the state, Chief Chukwuemeka Ezeife, said though Governor Obiano has powers to suspend the monarchs, he would not dabble into the matter as he has not studied the situation.
Ezeife, however, said that he has started reaching out to other elders of the state with a view to brokering peace between the embattled monarchs and the governor.
For the president of Ohanaeze Ndigbo in the state, Chief Damian Okeke-Ogene, the measure taken by the government was necessary in order to “instil discipline among the erring monarchs.”
But the Ohanaeze chieftain’s position was punctured by the former Deputy Chief Whip of the Anambra State House of Assembly, Ichie Tony-Uche Ezekwelu, disagreed with him saying government acted in haste.
Ezekwelu said in as much as the government has powers to issue certificates of recognition to monarchs and suspend or withdraw same, it was not right to sanction someone or a group of persons without following due process.
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said the suspension was unacceptable.
Its State Publicity Secretary, Nnamdi Nwangwu, warned that the traditional institutions should not be dragged into politics.
All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state, advised the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA)-led government to approach sensitive issues with some level of maturity.
Meanwhile, the Leadership and the people of Alor community, under the aegis of Alor People Assembly (A.P.A.), have backed Governor Obiano’s suspension of the community’s traditional ruler.
The community described the visit of the traditional ruler to Abuja as, “gross misconduct, an act of sabotage, disloyalty against the State and attempted desecration of the Office of the Governor of Anagram State.”
The community said Igwe Okonkwo, is an imposition on the community, and that he has “been conducting himself to the disapproval of our people, culminating in the latest sabotage against the government of Anagram State.”