Nigeria: Iwa Tasks Ohanaeze On Culture

by Anthony-Claret Onwutalobi

Lagos — The leadership of Ohanaeze Ndigbo has been tasked on the cultural heritage of the Igbo race, especially on unregulated conferment of Eze-Igbo on people without due process from the central body.

Making this charge, the Igbo World Assembly (IWA), a worldwide association of Ndigbo in the Diaspora, challenged the umbrella Igbo organisation at home to preserve Igbo cultural heritage by ensuring that none of its members goes around conferring the title of Eze-Igbo on people in every country they visit.

 The group in a press statement jointly signed by Dr Nwachukwu Anakwenze for Council of Igbo States, Americas; Chief Christian Onuora for The Council of Igbo Communities UK (CIC); Mr. Lambert Ahamefula for Ndigbo in Germany; Baldwin Obasi, Ohanaeze, South Africa; Chief Steve Orji, Igbo Community Ireland; Nnandi Uduji, Ndigbo, Switzerland; Dr John Emenike, Ndigbo, Canada; Chinedu Okonkwo, Igbo Welfare Association, France, Chief Emeka Nwosu, Igbo Union, Finland and Oliver Nwankwor, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Netherland commended the current leadership of Ohanaze in their bid to enthrone a better Igbo states.

Equally, IWA called on Ndigbo at home and abroad to withdraw recognition from all individuals living outside Nigeria, on whom the title of Eze-Igbo has been so conferred. According to the press statement, the proliferation of such an important title both demeans and disrespects the culture and tradition of the entire Ndigbo.

"We wish to use this opportunity to express our support and solidarity with Ohanaeze Ndigbo and its leadership, spearheaded by the indomitable Dr. Dozie Ikedife. As the representatives of Ndi-Igbo in Diaspora, we had resolved that we shall make peace or combat the adversaries of Ndigbo, depending on the prevailing situation. Ohanaeze has clearly emerged even stronger from some internal disruption," part of the communique read.

With Ohanaeze now strong and united, IWA expressed optimism that the elusive one Igbo voice is now within the reach.

"We have now crossed the threshold from mere possibility to reasonably well-assured probability, and we are excited about all the opportunities that will accrue to Ndigbo from this development," the group said.

In addition, they said noted that given the fact that the correct decision has been taken to unify Ohanaeze, the new Igbo group the recent upsurge in Igbo renaissance will not be allowed to fizzle out again.

"IWA do hereby publicly re-state its solidarity with our beloved Ohanaeze Ndigbo. With the current leadership of Ohanaeze, synergy seems to be returning to the affairs of Ndigbo. We welcome the recent enhancements in communication channels and information dissemination as we pledge our continued cooperation with Ohaneze.

They further alleged that a former Secretary General of Ohaneze, Col. Achuzia (rtd) was known to be guilty of this practice, which they condemned unequivocally.

"IWA is ably in support of you, and we are ever ready to work hand-in-hand with Ohanaeze Ndigbo to better the lots of Ndigbo," the group reassured