The government of Abia State has established a Board of Inquiry to look into accusations of misconduct leveled against certain traditional rulers in the state.
This decision comes shortly after the suspension of Eze Kanu Nwa Kanu, the traditional ruler of Ibom Isii autonomous community in Arochukwu LGA, for alleged abuse of office.
The Board of Inquiry, led by Justice Igbo Akomas (Rtd) as Chairman and Mrs. Gold Dynoh as Secretary, was inaugurated in Umuahia on Friday by the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Uzor Nwachukwu.
During the inauguration, the Commissioner stated that the terms of reference for the Board include summoning and questioning all relevant traditional rulers involved in the investigations, making recommendations to Governor Alex Otti, and assessing appropriate sanctions. The Commissioner added that the Board is expected to submit its findings within three weeks.
Nwachukwu emphasized that the State government’s actions are not aimed at witch-hunting anyone but rather to “maintain the integrity of the traditional institution in the State.”
In response, the Chairman of the Board of Inquiry expressed gratitude to the Governor for entrusting them with the assignment. The Chairman assured that the task would be carried out diligently in accordance with the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The Board of Inquiry also includes members such as Eze Linus Mba, Eze Nelson Nmerengwa, and Mrs. Nkechi Ikechi.
The suspension of Eze Kanu of Ibom Isii was issued through a letter signed by Commissioner Uzor Nwachukwu, citing allegations of office abuse.
However, some supporters and kinsmen of the suspended traditional ruler have criticized the government’s decision, claiming that it interferes with their culture. These supporters staged a solidarity march in support of the suspended king, asserting that he was being unfairly targeted. One supporter, identifying himself as Nwa Mazi, argued that the suspension was a hasty decision made without affording the monarch a fair hearing.