COMMISSIONER for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters in Anambra State, Greg Obi has said that Governor Willie Obiano has successfully approved the certification of 50 traditional rulers of various communities without rancour and acrimony.
Chief Obi said such feat was the first of its kind since the inception of Anambra State and that Governor Obiano had handled more dicey igweship tussles, including those he inherited from his predecessors and eventually arrived at amicable resolutions in all the cases.
The commissioner, who spoke with our correspondent in his office at the Government House, Awka, explained that the state government does not interfere with the selection or election of any traditional ruler or town union executives; that it was the prerogative of the communities to take such decision and present consensus candidates for government ratification.
He said, ” It is on record that the government of Chief Dr. Willie Obiano has certificated more traditional rulers in the state than any other administration since the inception of Anambra State.
” As a matter of fact, he has certificated more than his predecessor and even the person before him and that is because we simplified the process of studying the traditional rulers’ certification in Anambra State for achieving that goal,” Obi disclosed further.
The commissioner also informed that the process for traditional rulers’ certification was simplified such that if one met the criteria for becoming an Igwe, nothing else was done but to certify the individual. He therefore noted that one of the criteria was the constitution of the community as it concerned production of the traditional ruler.
According to the commissioner, ” When it is clear to us that this person is the choice of the people, following the constitution, then you get your certificate. But very often, the processes are tied up in court and when that happens, we respect the wishes of the court because the judiciary is an equal separate arm of the government.
” It is on record that this governor sees the traditional rulers on the certification ground because we follow due process hook line and sinker. Let me read out some of the traditional rulers in those 50 communities. Igwe Mac Anthony Okonkwo of Alor in Idemili-South, Igwe Victor Chukwuemeka Awogu of Osamala, Igwe Lawrence Nwofia of Ezi-Aguluotu Aguleri, Igwe Johnson Mbanefo of Mkpunando Aguleri and a host of others. It is important to note that the traditional rulers’ institution is the bedrock of stability in the society.