…laud Buhari on projects
Thirteen traditional rulers from Anambra State suspended by the state government yesterday said their suspension by Governor Willie Obiano was an abuse of power and high handedness. The royal fathers, who were suspended for one year and their certificate withdrawn by the state government for visiting President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja, said they were in the country’s seat of power on commendation visit to President Buhari for what he has done for the South East zone. At a press conference after the visit, they said as royal fathers, who are custodians of the people’s heritage, they felt that it was incumbent to express appreciation to the president on behalf of the people of the area. Prince Arthur Eze, who led the royal fathers to visit Buhari, was at the press conference.
Igwe Chijioke Nwankwo of Nwafia, who read the text of the conference, explained that they committed no crime in visiting the president, adding that it was within their fundamental human rights. “All what we have done were in exercise of our fundamental human rights and we emphasise that no one can take that from us. “Freedom of speech, freedom of movements are all enshrined in our constitution and grand norm. Any attempt against these would amount to muzzling the traditional institutions and we cannot accept that,” the traditional rulers argued. According to them, the state government premised its action on the pretext that they did not obtain permission from the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs but said it was a lame excuse bereft of ideas.
They added that such has shown how draconian the state government hasbecome. “Is there anywhere in our laws where freedom of movements by anyone is restricted within or outside the country? “So how can an individual now take excuse from another individual to move out of his domain or palace? Is that in the Nigerian constitution or Anambara constitution?” they asked. The traditional rulers described their suspension as nullity and the charade.
“We state categorically that we have not committed any act to warrant being suspended,” they stated. The monarchs has earlier expressed appreciation to President Muhammadu Buhari for his commitment to development of the country in general, and the South East in particular. According to a statement made available to newsmen yesterday by his spokesman, Femi Adesina, the monarchs, led to the Presidential Villa by Prince Arthur Eze, were received by Chief of Staff to the President, Professor Ibrahim Gambari, who thanked them for coming, adding that the gesture would encourage the President to do even more for the region and the country as a whole.