A circular from Mr Greg Obi, Commissioner for Local Government Chieftaincy matters said the twelve traditional rulers traveled outside the state without consultation or authorization from the state government.
The circular titled “Suspension of Twelve Traditional Rulers in Anambra State,” and dated Tuesday August 11, 2020, listed the affected traditional rulers to include Igwe Alex Edozieuno of Mkpunando, Igwe Mark Anthony Okonkwo of Alor, Igwe Chukuwma Bob Vincent Orji of Ezinifite ,Igwe Engr G.B.C Mbakwe of Abacha, Igwe Chijioke Nwankwo of Nawfia and Igwe Nkeli Nelly of Igbariam.
Others are Igwe Anthony Onyekwere of Owelle, Igwe A. N Onwuneme of Ikenga, Igwe Simon Ikechukwu Chidubem of Umumbo, Igwe S. O Uche of Ezira, Igwe Dr Emeka Ilouno of Ifitedunu and Igwe Peter Ikegbunem Udoji of Eziagulu Otu.
According to the circular, the suspension took effect from Tuesday, August 11, 2020.
It warned the suspended traditional rulers not to parade themselves as traditional rulers and to desist from discharging functions as traditional rulers in their communities or anywhere within the state and beyond with immediate effect.
The circular also revoked their membership of Anambra State Traditional Rulers Council and cancelled any appointment they may be holding in government committees until the suspension is lifted.
It stated that the suspension may be lifted at the end of one year, renewed or upgraded in the intervening period depending on government’s review of their conduct.
The circular added that suspension is on the recommendation of the Anambra State Traditional Rulers Council, following their meeting at the Professor Dora Akunyili Women Development Center, Awka on Tuesday, August 21st, 2020.
The Chairman of Anambra State Traditional Rulers Council, and the Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Nnaemeka Achebe had in a news interview condemned the actions of the suspended traditional rulers who had traveled to Abuja in cohort with an Anambra businessman in an attempt to have audience with President Muhammadu Buhari.
It would be recalled that the manner the trip was arranged, the embarrassment of being turned back at Aso Rock Villa, and viral videos showing the suspended traditional rulers being induced with monetary gifts by representatives of the businessman to facilitate their trip to Abuja had raised a lot of dust with many blaming the traditional rulers for ridiculing revered Anambra traditional institutions.
Again, in another video, the businessman was seen promising the traditional rulers the sum of sixteen million naira for their cooperation.
It would also be recalled that the Traditional Ruler of Ukwulu, Igwe Peter Uyanwa is currently serving a one year suspension for misconduct.