By Adeola Badru
THE Balogun Ndigbo of Ibadanland and Oyo State, High Chief Aloysious Obi, has petitioned the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji, over what he described as the monarch purported endorsement of Dr. Alex Anozie, as the leader of Igbos in Ibadanland.
Obi, in a protest letter titled: “Setting the record straight on Igbo Traditional Leadership in Ibadan and Oyo State,” to the Olubadan and members of the Olubadan-in-Council, and made available to journalists yesterday, said the endorsement was an attempt to cause misunderstanding and confusion among Ndigbo in the state.
Vanguard recalled that the purported endorsement of Anozie appeared in the media (national dailies and social platforms) recently, advising that disputes among Igbo people in Ibadan should be handled by Anozie as the traditional leader of the ethnic group in Ibadan and Oyo State.
But Obi, in the protest letter maintained that the report was misleading and capable of rupturing the peace and tranquility, hitherto pervading Igbo community in Ibadan and Oyo State, disclosing that there is presently a case before the Court of Appeal over the traditional leadership of Ndigbo in Ibadan and Oyo State between himself and Anozie.
While insisting that the purported endorsement is prejudicial and had caused him and the entire Igbo community both at home and in the Diaspora an embarrassment, he called on the monarch to within the shortest possible time, correct what he described as “an action done in error.”
Obi who recalled that he was pronounced “Olori Gbogbo Awon Igbo” (Leader or head of Igbo Community) by Oba Adetunji in 2016, said he believed that the monarch could not approbate and reprobate at the same time on who is the authentic Igbo traditional leader in Oyo State.
The letter read in part: “l want to remind your Media Aide, Mr. Adeola Oloko, that it is prejudicial to make a statement on a court of competent jurisdisction following a statement credited to him that Dr. Alex Anozie is the authentic Eze and Onyendu Ndigbo of Ibadan and Oyo State which is the main subject of litigation.”
“Your Majesty, it should also be recalled that you pronounced me “OLORI GBOGBO AWON IGBO,” in your palace on the 22nd day of April, 2016. I also wish to remind your majesty that you invited us (my group and that of Dr. Anozie) and warned us to stop the use of Eze Ndigbo immediately, which we all accepted,” Obi recalled.