By Etok Okon
The persisting leadership tussle among the Igbos in Akwa Ibom State has eaten deep into the preexisted unity among the Ohanaeze Ndigbo in the State.
The feud, which according to sources, started about twenty years ago, in recent times, has triggered serious crises between the titled and crowned Eze Barth Okpala and his rival, the alleged self acclaimed Eze Gburugburu, who sources said has refused to accept defeat and peace talks since 2014.
Speaking with our reporter in Uyo, recently, a member of the Ndigbo community, Chief Fabian Okpo, disclosed that the Igbo leadership brawl had torn apart the existed unity and cultural values of Ndigbo in the State, adding that there would be no more peace talk until Eze Gburubguru and his allies accept defeat. He noted that the crowned Eze Ndigbo in Uyo remained Eze Barth, and that the Eze Ndigbo was not at war with any known faction in the State.
“The Eze Ndigbo in Uyo is not at war with any self acclaimed leader. The recognized Eze Ndigbo in Uyo is Eze Barth,” Okpo stressed.
Chief Okpo further remarked that Ndigbo in the State have warned CYC to stop parading himself as Eze Ndigbo and to accept the judgment of the former judge in Ikot Ekpene court, and the advice of the immediate past first lady of Akwa Ibom State, Her Excellency Unoma Akpabio, in the interest of peace, and related that CYC can never dream of being Eze Ndigbo in the State as a club cannot crown Eze Ndigbo. He revealed that already a court in the State had barred CYC from hosting any meeting of Ndigbo in the State.
The Igbo Chief, also, blamed the President of Ohanaeze Ndigbo in Akwa Ibom State, Barr. Osuagwu, for fueling the crisis, noting that Osuagwu, despite court order, has been taking side with the illegal Eze Gburugburu, CYC. He urged Igbo youths in the State to support the truth and to resist being misled by any agent of dishonesty. He commended the State Government and Uyo for peaceful coexistence with the Igbos in the State.