By Emmanuel Adeleke
Cross River State Governor, Ben Ayade has stripped the village head, clan head of Ukem and paramount ruler of Efut, in Calabar South Local Government Area, Prof Itam Hogan Itam, of all his traditional titles, for allegedly dabbling into politics.
This was contained in a letter addressed to Itam, dated May 11, and signed by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Chieftaincy Affairs, Adoga Victor.
According to the letter, Itam was directed to immediately return the certificate of recognition to the state’s department of chieftaincy affairs in the governor’s office.
The monarch reportedly attended a meeting of the southern senatorial district caucus of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), where Arthur Jarvis was said to have been endorsed as the opposition party’s consensus governorship candidate for the 2023 election.
The meeting was presided over by a former governor of the state, Donald Duke.
Itam’s attendance at the meeting reportedly contravened the Cross River State traditional chieftaincy order.
“Following the report of the panel set up by the Cross River State Traditional Rulers Council (CRSTRC) and the approval of His Excellency, you have been removed as the village head, clan head of Ukem and paramount ruler of Efuts with immediate effect, to enable you go ahead to do your partisan politics.
“You have therefore ceased to be so recognised and cannot operate as such forthwith,” the letter read in part.