Okwuta Isieke Ibeku Community Umuahia boils, as leadership crisis rocks town

September 15th, 2019

The Okwuta Isieke Ibeku Autonomous community in Umuahia North Local Government Area of Abia State is on the verge of experiencing an imminent breakdown of law and order over the rightful President General of the community.

This has led to a division amongst the youth of the community which had also led to the destruction of property and several assaults occasioning harm.
The traditional ruler of the community, HRH Eze (Hon). Dan Egbeogu has reported the matter to the Abia state Commissioner for Police, and the Abia state Governor through his deputy Governor, Ude Oko Chukwu.

According to the embattled President General of the community, Mr Ifeanyi Oriaku, trouble started when his administration was accused of disposing a landed property at Ehimiri Housing Estate at N1.5 million without the knowledge of the community.

Oriaku said: “I explained to them that the money in question was the compensation Abia State Housing Corporation paid to the community and that it has been paid into the account of the community. I equally told them why this information was not relayed to them during the last general meeting was because I and other principal officers of the EXCO were on official duty, outside the town”.

This explanation did not go down well with the Presidents of two of the age grades in the community who later stated without equivocation, that they have been mandated to retrieve all property and otherwise belonging to the community.

Before long the authority of the President General was questioned citing elongation of tenure of office as their grouse even though there is a provision in the community’s Constitution for the removal or re-election of its EXCO.

In a letter dated 2nd May, 2019 the embattled PG, Mr Oriaku informed the traditional ruler of the community of a serious threat to peace in the community in which he had specifically mentioned Otuobi and Ndiejiamatu age grades as provoking actions capable of causing serious breakdown of the law and order in Okwuta Isieke Ibeku community.

As the Chief Security Officer of the community, Eze Dan Egbeogu took that letter to the Divisional Police Officer at the World Bank Police Station at Ehimiri, Umuahia.

The letter read in parts, “It was on this report that you promised to send your police officers to ask these people to surrender the keys to the lawful person authorized to keep the keys. Up till the time of writing this letter, no action has been taken to retrieve the keys from this person acting without the authority of the community.

“I am requesting you to act fast before there is a complete breakdown of law and order. The police will blame me for not seeking their assistance in this matter before taking any further action that might result in breakdown of the law and order.

According to the traditional ruler, who was later handed over the case to settle, real commotion was averted on the day he had called for a meeting to deliberate on the issue, “I informed Mr. Emeka Chionye who spoke for them that I was advised to convene the meeting and but, he refused bluntly to vacate the seats with the entire members of the two age grades. So, as not to cause a breach of the peace, I advised the other members of the Okwuta Community to leave the Hall for peace to reign”.

Although the traditional ruler insists that the community’s Constitution provides for necessary steps to effect a change in the leadership and therefore until that is done, Chigozie Dennis and their cohorts who pronounced themselves the new executives of Okwuta Ibeku Development Union without the mandate of the people and not following the provisions of the written Constitution of Okwuta people, will not be recognized.

In a letter referenced EC/CIL/VOL.3/50 and dated August 30, 2019 the embattled PG had written the Inspector General of Police, Force Headquarters through his lawyers, Eze Ukattah & Co over the persistent threat to life, wanton vandalization of property and mindless terrorizing of members of Okwuta Isieke Ibeku by the self-imposed leadership.

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