The fight over who will mount the traditional stool of Nanka community of Orumba North local government area of Anambra has torn the community apart, leaving indigenes of the community in factions.
This is following the transition of the previous monarch of the community, His Royal Highness, Igwe Gilbert Oformata.
It was gathered that since the demise of the late monarch early last year, the community has been enmeshed in turmoil with some sections of the community jostling to produce his successor.
The recent insistence of Nanka Progressive Union(NPU), a voluntary group said to be championed by three indigenes of the community who have constituted themselves into the kingmakers of the community to crown a new king has however further plunged the community into crises.
Our correspondent gathered that the group led by Chiefs Polycarp Emenike, Ebele Nwosu, Peter Chinedu who are also joined by Chief Okwudili Ezenwankwo have however elected Chief Godwin Ezeilo as the Eze elect of the town, and also waiting to crown him.
In a swift reaction to their election of Ezeilo as the Eze elect of the town by the NPU on 2nd January, another group, Nanka Peoples Assembly(NPA) has kicked against it, saying that the it does not have the constitutional backing to elect a monarch for the community, being a voluntary organization.
Briefing journalists on Thursday in Nanka, the president general of NPA, Chief Emmanuel Ezeume told journalists that Nanka community will not accept the foisting of a monarch on it for any reason, especially from NPU, which it said does not have the constitutional power to elect a king for the community.
Ezeume said, “These people have made themselves out into the kingmakers of the community, even though they are a voluntary organisation that do not have the power to elect a king for the community.
“The matter is still in court, and yet, without recourse to that, they have gone ahead on 2nd January to choose an Igwe elect, and you agree with me that this amounts to subjudice. Since the death of the former traditional ruler, they have been standing our custom on its head, just to ensure they take over the machinery of crowning kings in the community.
“This group has also been written by the state government through the ministry of local government and chieftaincy matters, warning them to follow due process in selecting a monarch for the community. First they sought to hold the late monarch’s last ofala, even when his body is still in the morgue, just to make way for them to elect a new monarch.
“The ministry cautioned them not to stand the tradition on its head, as it is usually traditional for the dead body of a monarch to be interred first before the last ofala, which usually heralds the selection process for another monarch.”
He lamented that in spite of these warnings, the NPU and their points men went ahead and held an ofala festival for the late monarch, in a bush in Agbiligba village, neglecting the warning of the Anambra Traditional rulers council, which had initially warned that no last ofala outside the palace of the late monarch will be accepted.
Ezeume said, “They held the last ofala of the late monarch in the bush, in the absence of all members of the royal family, traditional rulers in the state and other titled men. This is a shame, and we reject it in totality.
Ezeume called on the Anambra State governor, Chief Willie to quickly wade into the crisis in the community as it may escalate into full blown crises if nothing is done.
The chairman of the inauguration committee for the crowning of the Eze elect, Chief Okwudili Ezenwankwo however did not respond to calls when our reporter sought his reaction, but it was gathered that arrangements were in top gear by his committee for the coronation of a new monarch.