Ejiofor is on suspension, says palace source

By Festus Ahon

ASABA—CRISIS is  brewing in Ubulu-Uku Kingdom, Anoicha South Local Government Area of Delta State, following the rejection of the newly crowned  17 years old monarch, HRM Chukwuka Akaeze I, by the Onishe (King- maker), Chief Emma Ejiofor.

The 17 years old monarch, succeeded his father, late Edward Akaeze Ofulue III, killed by suspected Fulani herdsmen who kidnapped him on January 5.

Briefing newsmen in Asaba, Ejiofor described the teen-aged king as a “government appointed self-styled king” and his late father as a “usurper.”

“I am the alter-ego of Ubulu-Uku traditional council. It is the Onishe that has the powers to crown or dethrone a king. The late Akaeze was a usurper. I did not crown him. If you go through the edict that makes my office, you will see that I did not also crown the boy that was politically manipulated into office recently,” he said.

VISIT: Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State (left) welcoming the newly crowned traditional ruler of Ubulu-Uku Kingdom, HRM Obi Chukwuka Akaeze I, when the monarch visited the governor in Asaba, yesterday. Photo: Henry Unini.
FILE: Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State (left) welcoming the newly crowned traditional ruler of Ubulu-Uku Kingdom, HRM Obi Chukwuka Akaeze I Photo: Henry Unini.

Explaining that the “Nine- man Council of Chiefs, called Umuezim, which custom and tradition of the kingdom empowers to select a new king was sidelined in the choice of HRM Chukwuka Akaeze I.”  He said that he will right the wrong, adding  that he had served for 11 years as Onishe.

“I won’t dance to my grave on the altar of mediocrity. What is a 17 years old boy doing in Government House? That tells you that it was a political manipulation. By all standards, the boy is still a minor. If I dance to their side, the gods will strike me.

“The young man came from London on a Thursday and his father was interred that day. He was crowned that same day. He was taken to the local government council chairman the following day. The third day, they took him to the governor of the state and he returned to the United Kingdom the next day. These things were done to tell you that some persons schemed to cover up for their traditional rascality.”

On his suspension as the Onishe, he said that the late monarch, “who was not crowned a king could not have suspended a traditional title holder. The late Akaeze had no powers to suspend me for not accepting his self-styled installation.”

Efforts to reach the Regent for comment on the matter proved abortive at press time. However, a source close to the palace said that Chief Ejiofor was suspended from office about two years ago by the late monarch.

The source who pleaded anonymity, said,  “Emma Ejiofor is just an individual and can’t be greater than the entire kingdom.”



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