Godspower Cheruka Owhornda Ejekwu has said he is not interested in dragging position with anyone, rather, appealed to natives of his community, Rumuowha, in Eneka of Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State, to embrace peace.
Ejekwu stated this in an exclusive interview with EDITH CHUKU in his office, following the refutal by elders, family heads and youths of the community against his coronation which was done by the paramount ruler of the clan, His Royal Highness, Eze Roland O. Woko.
He said he will not forgo his crown because according to him, his coronation was a spiritual coronation.
Can we meet you?
My name is Chief Godspower Ejekwu, the Ochi-Eli 1 of Rumuowha.
Disagreement has continued to trail your coronation. In fact, it has been described as a kangaroo coronation.
No. My coronation is not a kangaroo coronation as they said, my coronation is ordained, and the only person that has the power to crown me is the royal highness.
I am not interested in dragging any position with anybody and my position is not in contest with anybody, I was on my own, the family called me and said I should come and take the title, I said okay, I will do that.
I am just praying that everybody should come back, let’s make peace for the sake of Rumuowha. I don’t have any time to drag anything with anybody, I don’t have time to create scene with anybody. I want the unity of Rumuowha; that is my interest
How much did you spend to get the crown?
That is so funny. I don’t have money to even bribe anybody, I don’t have money to even bribe. My coronation is a spiritual coronation.
Were you duly screened?
The screening they are talking about, I undergo the screening, I was already appointed this thing since January. This appointment has been given to me, we have been attending series of meetings, attending series of interviews, calling me for so, so, so thing, before finally, they coroneted me on 30th April.
During your coronation, were all the families in Rumuowha, representatives of those you are to head present?
Some of them were represented, not all.
Did you bother to find out why they didn’t attend?
You know in this kind of thing people may say I will not come, after that they will go and do what is in their mind.
Meaning, they are not in support?
Those people feel that they cannot, but what has been done has been done. Let’s come back home and settle, make peace, let Rumuowha grow, that is it.
What if this peace you seek requires you to give up the crown and forgo the title, will you sacrifice that?
I can’t do that because it has been ordained and the coronation has come to pass. Right now, there is nothing they can do about it, let’s come back, let’s settle, there will not be any crisis in Rumuowha, I pray, and the God I serve will not allow any crisis to be in Rumuowha. So I cannot.
This title I did not go for it, I did not go for it one day, I was not there when they agreed, so I cannot drop what my fathers asked me to come and take, when you want to drop something it’s something that, okay I want to go and buy something on my own, I see that this thing if I buy it and come back with it, it will cause problem, but this one people called me, come and take this thing, I can’t drop it, unless they say I should drop it.
There are six families in Rumuowha, is that true?
How many were represented during your coronation?
Three families, and Eneka Council of Chiefs were present.
Why then does your coronation appear as a shock to many? Were they really aware of the process, if it was actually followed like you said or was it secretly done?
They called gathering several times, some families attended, some families would not attend, rather, they tried to form elders’ forum which have(sic) not existed in Rumuowha, nothing like elders’ forum in Rumuowha. If there is anything like elders’ forum, Rumuekporlu will start the meeting, as everything is in order, if there is anything like meeting or elders’ forum meeting, we will start it, after everything we start the meeting then other families, but there is nothing like that.
The paramount ruler of Eneka is from Rumuekporlu, you are also from Rumuekporlu. How is this fair to the other five families?
Excuse me, Rumuekporlu is not holding all the positions, when it comes to royal highness, royal highness and ojiowhor is one position, in those days, Amadi-Woko is the royal highness. He’s the Ojiowhor, Amadi-Job-Woko.
In the time of Sunday Waka, he now changed it, that he is not capable to hold. So, that position is one, it’s not two, so we are not holding all the positions, what we are holding is our own right as the first son.
Okay, let’s assume, Rumuowha is the first son of Eneka, right? When you come to Rumuowha who is the first son? Rumuekporlu, when something like sharing formula comes to Rumuowha, who will take the first share? Rumuekporlu, then when Rumuowha is sharing something who will take the first? So, what are we talking about? We assumed our right, we don’t want to fight with anybody; we have been calling meetings too, since days, calling meetings, come, come. Let us say for what they wrote on Wednesday, our family have(sic) right to even make a bad comment, but we have always been begging them to come back, royal highness said you people should come back, this thing I cannot give my second in command to any other person.
Go to Rumuigbo where our kinsmen is, Eze Epara Ikenigbo is the same family with the royal majesty, you cannot share it, two sons in a family, one must be under, so nobody is dragging anything with anybody.
It does not happen in any part of Ikwerre, that position belongs to Rumuowha, who is the first son of Rumuowha? Rumuekporlu, you know when people come out and say we are holding all that, no, we are not the only family that holds this position, go to other communities, the first son will always hold, see, I like what is happening in my family.
Nobody is trying to even make noise, we are waiting for them to come let us talk one on one, if you are calling a meeting out of Eneka or within Eneka, we will come and talk it one on one than to begin to make problem. We are not ready to make problem with anybody and I warned anybody in my head, nobody should make trouble. If I see you making any comment on the Rumuowha platform, I will call you on phone and say please don’t go there because like Goodluck said, my position does not worth crisis, I can’t do that, so that is that.
When it was coming up, the entire family agreed, I was not there. I was not there when they even agreed. When I asked the outcome of the meeting, they said I was appointed to be the chief, I said okay, I have to pray over it. My God said I should go ahead. The position of the prime minister of a community, it is the right of the royal highness, nobody appoints or elects that position to him, because he must trust the person, know the person. I can enter his bedroom, I can enter anywhere he is, so nobody selects without him.
But people are calling your coronation a kangaroo one.
They are lying. I cannot call them names but let them come back home, they don’t have anything to hold hand, if they have anything to hold hand, let them call, go to our kindred, or call the Apara people, or call let us talk it one on one, than spreading my name up and down.
Well, I am so happy, as small as I am my name is spreading over Nigeria, over Rivers State that I have been given a chieftaincy title, yes, it’s fine, but all these is our money, let’s come back home and settle and make peace, that is my humble submission.
Are you aware of the chieftaincy regulation of Eneka Town Council, more like a constitution, that has existed since 1999?
Section five, number three stipulates procedures to selecting a village chief.
There is nothing like that. That constitution I have not seen it, I saw something on the platform. When Rumuowha is the first son of Eneka, then Rumuekporlu is the first son of Rumuowha, what are you talking about? Ask others, Rumuekporlu is the first son of Rumuowha.
What is your word to the entire people of Rumuowha?
What I want is peace, let them come back, let everyone, I know everybody will not be happy with everything but let us come back and make peace, let Rumuowha have the peace we are looking for, let them come back home let us make peace and forge ahead that is my appeal.