…Rues circumstances of late Atah’s death
By Chris Ochayi
A socio-cultural group, the UKOMU Igala in The Diaspora has called on Igala ruling houses to ensure seamless process in selection of successor to the late Attah Igala, His Royal Highness, Michael Ameh Oboni II.
The Diaspora group, which made the call via a statement issued Wednesday in Abuja, tasked the surviving elders of the four pre-eminent Igala ruling houses, namely Amaju Akwu, Amaju Ameachor, Amaju Akogu and Amaju Ocholi to start putting heads together with a view to making the process seamless
The UKOMU Igala, which picked a hole in circumstances leading to the demise of HRH Michael Oboni II, regretted that Igala people and Igala traditional institution have incurred huge damage from the event.
The statement signed Dr. John Onuh and Mr. Amos Amodu reads; “It is with shock and sadness that we of UKOMU Igala in The Diaspora received the ancestral passage to the great beyond, of the royal father of the Igala nation, His Royal Majesty, Dr. Michael Idakwo Ameh Oboni II.
“On behalf of Igala sons and daughters the world over, we send our heartfelt condolences to the queen mother, Iye Onyete and other members of the immediate family.
“We seize this opportunity to call upon Igala patriots worldwide to keep their heads high and resist any attempt by fifth columnists and outside entities to turn the shocking transition into an opportunity for rubbishing our culture and tradition.
“Those familiar with both the oral and recorded history of the Igala people know that the recognized authority for announcing the passage of the Attah of Igala is the Achadu.
“Thus, the entire processes for announcing the transition of our royal father this time around appears unfamiliar.
“Even though we live in the 21st century where news travel faster than the speed of light, and age long traditions are constantly trampled on,
“We of UKOMU IGALA ASSOCIATION in the DIASPORA calls on Igala sons and daughters everywhere to continue to preserve and uphold our sacred traditions for the sake of future generations.
“We call upon everyone else who has any modicum of respect for the Igala and their culture, to show similar respect by restraining from making any further statement and pronouncement on this and other subjects that denigrate the sacredness of our institutions.”
It added that, “At the present time, there is very little that we can say definitively regarding the transition of AMIDEJU. However, the preliminary information at our disposal leaves very bitter taste in our mouths, and calls for a firm disquisition, at the right time, by the right personnel.
“The suggestion that the father of the Igala nation will journey from the royal palace at Idah to Abuja, or any other place for medical treatment without proper protocol and a decent complement of palace and other security escort attending to him 24 hours a day sounds out of place for us.
“Some of the questions that we would like to find answers to at the right time include whether or not Gabaidu’s personal physician was in the know about the surgery.
“What is the existing protocol at the hospital for a procedure involving a personality of the caliber of the Attah of Igala? Where those protocols followed to the letter? What did the administrative leadership of the palace know about the surgery? How about the state government?
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“Given the degree of damage already done to the Igala as a people, and the Igala traditional institution by this event, the minimum that can be done moving forward is to ensure that our tradition does not get subjected to further fractures and damaging succession battles.
“In light of that, we call upon the surviving elders of the four pre-eminent Igala ruling houses, namely Amaju Akwu, Amaju Ameachor, Amaju Akogu and Amaju Ocholi to start putting heads together with a view to making the process seamless
“Our appeal to the elders of these houses is to come to their assignment with the awareness and knowledge the ATTAH represents the best of us, IGALA people.
“In order for someone who embodies the decency, courage, empathy and compassion for which the Igala are renowned to emerge, the custodians of our culture must comport themselves properly, guide their own poise and carriage.
“We know that they are going to be under all kinds of pressures and temptations to subvert the process, yet we trust them to stand their royal grounds and let themselves be guided by royal ethos and our ancestors.
“Thankfully, there is an official gazette, which is the accepted guide for navigating the rotation and succession process. According to the gazette, a copy of which we have seen, it is the turn of the descendants of AMEACHOR to produce the next Gabaidu.
“We therefore call on the Ameachor ruling house to do the Igala nation proud by producing a candidate that will be accepted and respected by the entire Igala nation, and through a process that is devoid of any form of rancor.
“We also call on the other ruling houses to respect the decision of the Ameachor ruling house and ensure that the 4 ruling houses present a united front.
“We indeed call on everyone who has a role to play in the emergence of the new Attah Igala to respect the succession process of the Igala people and play their roles with dignity, utmost transparency, and by the rules.”