Delta community vows to resist imposition of traditional ruler

The late traditional ruler, Obi Okolie

The long quest for peace in Egbudu-Aka community in Aniocha South, Delta State, may still be elusive as some of the factional leaders have vowed to resist the state government’s recent appointment of Prince Paul Okolie as the traditional ruler of the community.

The agrarian community was the scene of a bitter crisis between Paul and his younger half brother, Prince Solomon Okolie as regards the rightful heir to the throne following the demise of their father, Obi Okolie last year.

Solomon is insisting that in line with the dictates of custom and tradition of his people, he should be crowned as his elder brother’s mother was not lawfully wedded to his father, the elder Okolie denied, saying that his mother’s dowry was fully paid and so is entitled to mount the throne of his forebears. In the ensuing mayhem between the duo, lives have been lost and properties worth millions of naira, destroyed.

In a letter dated January 30, 2018 routed through the Directorate of Chieftaincy Affairs and signed by the Permanent Secretary, Mr. P.N. Anuku, it was stated that the State Executive Council had approved the appointment of Prince Paul, on November 19, 2017, as the Obi of the crisis torn kingdom. The letter, which was addressed to Aniocha South local council chairman, stated that the state government would soon commence the payment of his entitlements and take steps to present him with a staff of office following the ratification of the appointment on January 1, 2018 at meeting of the State Executive Council Meeting.

A community leader who would not want his name in print however vowed to resist the desecration of their age long custom and tradition by imposing Prince Paul as the traditional ruler by the state government. He said that the community was resolute in rejecting the senior Okolie, as he did not meet the full requirements to be crowned as the Obi of Egbudu Akah and is a pretender.

Also, a top government official (names withheld) maintained that January 1 was a public holiday and so there was no way the exco could have met on that day.

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