High Court Blocks Igbo Iwaji New Yam Festival From Unfolding In Kano As Rival Traditional Leaders Quarrel
A court has blocked the unfolding of one of the most important Igbo traditional events from unfolding in Kano State. The High Court in State has put on hold the 2020 proposed New Yam Festival known as Iwaji set to be held today after issuing an ex parte motion, stopping the activities until the hearing of the substantive motion before it.
Justice Farouk Lawan Adamu, in reference to Suit No. K/322/2020, also restrained one Ikechukwu Oliver Akpudo aka the Igwe V of NdiIgbo in Kano from organising, assembling people and celebrating the Iwaji or any festival that has to do with Ndigbo living in Kano.
He further directed the Kano State Commissioner of Police, Habu Sani, to ensure Akpudo, and other Igbo natives and the general public comply with the court order. The court also barred any event whatsoever pertaining to the Igbo in Kano State, pending hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice filed by Igwe Boniface. The court fixed October 7 for hearing.
In response the Igbo traditional ruler in Kano, His Highness Igwe (Dr.) Boniface Ibekwe Ide I, Ezedioranma IV, has hailed the court’s verdict saying that Akpudo has been parading himself as the Igwe V of Ndigbo in Kano.
For the record Boniface who has been the Igbo leader in Kano for at least a decade now is fully recognised by the Governor Abdullahi Ganduje's administration as the authentic traditional ruler of the Ndigbo in Kano State.
“The court had initially restrained Akpudo and asked him to pay me the sum of N2 million, as damages, for disturbing me on the throne. He has not paid the money, yet, he went ahead to invite people for an Igbo New Yam Festival.
“He also wrote letters to prominent Igbo personalities promising to give them chieftaincy titles during his purported event. So, I and my cabinet members, as law-abiding citizens, had to go to court to stop him.
“How can someone wake up suddenly and begin to parade himself as my successor when I am still alive, still on the throne and performing my duties diligently as the authentic Eze Indigbo in Kano?,”
The Igbo monarch further appealed to the Igbo in Kano to be calm and that the New Yam Festival will be celebrated at an appropriate time in accordance with the Igbo tradition.
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