Anambra State Governor, Prof Chukwuma Soludo, has been warned to take steps to avert crisis in Nanka community, as stakeholders gear up for war this weekend, at the community’s New Yam Festival celebration.
Nanka community in Orumba North Local Government Area of the state has been plagued with various crises in most of the villages that make up the town.
Some indigenes of Agbiligba, a village in Nanka, urged Soludo to act fast to avert bloodshed. This is as the indigenes accused some influential persons in the community of plotting to enthrone a leader for Ozor title holders without due process.
The Legal Adviser of Nze na Ozor group of Agbiligba village, Nze Chinedu Ezeozue and other title chiefs in Agbiligba, who addressed journalists on Thursday, said there is impending crisis on Friday and Saturday, during the new yam celebration, unless the governor intervenes.
Ezeozue told journalists: “During our new yam festival of 2023, which comes up on August 18 and 19, the tradition is that Isi Nze, the leader of Nze na Ozor title holders, will pick yam after some rites by the traditional ruler, but a former lawmaker, Hon Okwudili Ezenwankwor, is working to install his uncle, David Ezenwankwor as Isi Nze. If they try this, they will be crisis, and we are calling on our governor to avert this.”
Ezeozue read out a letter submitted to the governor on the matter, saying that the village has vowed to oppose any move to legitimise Ezenwankwor as Isi Nze.
Part of their letter to Governor Soludo read: “Chief Okwudili Ezenwankwor, former Member of House of Representatives, has been using HRH Igwe Godwin Ogochukwu Ezeilo to desecrate and destroy the traditional laws, customs, culture and tradition of Nanka community.
“This is likely to lead to breakdown of law, order, and public peace during our new yam festival on August 18 and 19, 2023.”
Ezeozue stated that the plot to foist Chief David Ezenwankwor as Isi Nze started in 2021 during their new yam festival, but the plot was stoutly resisted, to the point of almost bringing shame on the community before her guests, including a then governorship candidate, Mr Valentine Ozigbo.
“We resisted it and they stayed low. Last year, we did not hold the new yam festival in deference to our President General was killed by gunmen. This year, our new yam festival is coming up, and they are making plans to enthrone Ezenwankwor as Isi Nze, but this would lead to crisis. That is why we are calling on Anambra State governor, Prof Chukwuma Soludo to intervene.”
Meanwhile, several attempts to reach Hon Okwudili Ezenwankwor on his mobile phone for reaction on the accusation that he is one of those fueling the crisis were not successful.
However, the President General of the community, Mr Ifeanyi Ezike, said that steps are already being taken to resolve the crisis.
Commissioner for Local Government, Chieftaincy and Community Matters, Hon Tony Collins Nwabunwanne, who spoke on behalf of government, stated that Soludo government has resolved many crises in various communities, and would do same in Nanka.