Abia traditional rulers, elders split over Ikpeazu, Ogah
In Abia State, traditional rulers, prime ministers and leaders are sharply divided over who should be the governor between Dr Okezie Ikpeazu and Dr Uchechukwu Ogah.
While some, among the leaders, called for the swearing-in of Ogah, who was last week declared as governor by the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja after it sacked Ikpeazu for allegedly forging his tax documents, others stood by Ikpeazu.
Reading a nine-point communiqué at the end of their meeting in Umuahia, yesterday, the leader of a group and traditional Prime Minister of Ibeku Kingdom, Chief Uche Akwukwaegbu, said that Ogah should be sworn-in.
He said that no amount of intimidation would make the ‘governor-elect’ to denounce his mandate.
Akwukwaegbu said: “This forum frowns at the negative reactions of some reactionary forces that see the court and INECs decision as hasty. They’re people who are used to disobeying court orders which President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration is fighting hard to change.
“This forum views the attitude and reaction of the Adolphus Wabara-led Abia Concerned Elders as people who are yet to queue into Buhari change mantra.
But another group, under the auspices of Abia Elders and Traditional Rulers, which also held a meeting at the Asokoro home of Prince Vincent Ogbulafo, in Abuja, yesterday, commended the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, for his quick and timely intervention, saying that reduced tension in the state.
In their communiqué read by Chief Onyema Ugochukwu, the group described the issuance of Certificate of Return to Ogah by the INEC as perverse and reckless.
The elders, who declared their support for Ikpeazu, appealed to Abians and every interest group in the tussle for leadership of the state to remain calm for the good of the state.
All serving senators from Abia State, Theodore Orji (Abia Central), Mao Ohuabunwa (Abia North) and Enyi Abaribe (Abia South) attended the meeting.