The Obi of Onitsha, HRM Igwe Nnemeka Achebe, has thrown his weight behind the banning of the Eze Ndigbo title in Ibadan and Akure.
The Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji, Aje Ogungunniso 1 and his Akure counterpart, Oba Ogunlade Aladetoyinbo had recently slammed a ban on the title in the two cities, stressing that an Eze and an Oba can not reign in one kingdom.
The Obi expressed his support while featuring as a guest in an engagement programme at the Ibadan School of Government and Public Policy (ISGPP), Bodija, Ibadan at the weekend.
The engagement focused on leveraging traditional institutions for better local governance.
According to Achebe, Oba Adetunji and Aladetoyinbo were right in banning the use of the title in their respective domains because it is antithetical to African culture.
“There may be need for a workshop that will involve all stakeholders including the Eze Ndigbo themselves, government, community leaders in whose territories Ibos are living and other stakeholders.
“The Olubadan of Ibadan has made a statement on this. The Deji of Akure has also made the same statement on it. I think those two statements are very, very clear and very definitive, particularly from the perspective of the host communities. I think we should leave it at that.”
Speaking earlier during his presentation titled “Rethinking Local Governance and Traditional Community-based Institutions as Catalyst for Socio-Economic Development in Nigeria,” the Executive Vice Chairman, ISGPP, Dr Tunji Olaopa, said one of the school’s flagship programmes focuses on how to harness the potentials of traditional institutions for development purposes and local governance.
He hailed the Obi of Onitsha for being one of the outstanding modern traditional rulers “driving the performance of traditional institutions as the democratic leverage for grassroots governance.”