Aguleri, the country home of Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano looks primed for internal crisis as members of the royal family have disagreed over the hosting of the 2020 Ovala, a traditional kingship rite.
The royal family has been in crisis since the demise of the late Eze Christopher Idigo January last year after a 24 year-reign as Ogalagidi IV of Aguleri kingdom.
Although the traditional rulership of Aguleri is hereditary, the selection of Eze Michael Idigo as the Late king’s successor, was perceived by some family members as not properly done in line with the customs and traditions of the land.
Earlier in December, 2019, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor had issued an announcement on behalf of his principal, Governor Obiano, inviting the public to the First Ovala of Eze Michael Idigo on the 4th of January, 2020.
But in a swift response, a faction of the Idigo dynasty led by Crown Prince Fidelis Idigo, has issued a statement dissociating the Idigo Royal Dynasty from the purported Ovala.
The Statement reads;
“Our attention has been drawn to the announcement signed by one Mr James Eze, Press Secretary to the Governor of Anambra State, about a purported Ovala festival Celebration in Aguleri, planned for the 4th of January 2020.
Ordinarily, we would have ignored such an announcement as anyone is free to hold a carnival and call it Ovala in Aguleri, but for the mention of Idigo Royal Dynasty, being involved.
We want the general public to note that:
1. The Idigo Royal Dynasty and the extended Iruokechi Royal Family are not part of the so called Ovala festival.
2. That traditionally, it is not up to one year the last Igwe joined our Ancestors. An Ovala ceremony therefore cannot be held so soon.
3. Additionally, the propriety of giving certificate of recognition to someone who is not the family’s choice as Igwe, is a matter before the State high Court for determination.
4. The Press Secretary to the Governor is not a member of the Royal Family nor an indigene of Aguleri so has no business announcing the Ovala festival for the Idigo Royal Dynasty .
5. Ama Igwe which they claim as their venue, is a private property and our approval for the use of the same was neither sought nor given, so the action is a deliberate attempt to provoke and trespass
6. We have it on good authority that they wish to repeat what they did in March 2019, when they forcefully collected the remains of the late Igwe from the Mortuary at Enugu, invaded and locked down the Palace and Palace grounds with security operatives, to conduct the burial for him, preventing the Royal family from taking part.”
They concluded that every government has an end and that the impunity being perpetrated on the Idigo Royal Dynasty will not last forever.