Cross Rivers State Governor, Senator Bassey Otu has declared His Eminence, Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi as the new Obong of Calabar
This was contained in a statement by signed on behalf of the governor, by his Chief Press Secretary, CPS, Emmanuel Ogbeche, on Tuesday night.
The governor stated that the government recognised Okon Abasi V as the properly enthroned Obong of Calabar.
The government further warned all interlopers, including a former Minister of Finance, Anthony Ani, to stop bickering as regards the throne.
“The Cross River State government frowns on the seemingly intractable dispute over the kingship of the Efik nation and the contention for the stool of the Obong of Calabar since 2008.
Governor Bassey Otu noted that the stool of the Obong of Calabar was about six centuries old, steeped in the ethos of the Efiks and revered among the few first-class kings in Nigeria; hence, the need to protect the throne from judicial, social and political scorn.
“The governor states that having undertaken a judicial review of the state high court and the Supreme Court rulings as well as the Constitution of the Obong’s Palace and interfaced with royal fathers, resolves as follows:
“That the issue of waiver for qualification of a candidate to contest the Obong stool is untenable; that the stipulations of the Constitution of the Obong’s Palace in respect of the procedure for the enthronement of any Etubom as the Obong of Calabar remain sacrosanct; that in all the subsequent judgments of the appellate courts, the letter and spirit of the state high court judgment of September 25, 2022 has not been set aside, nor its binding effect on all parties diminished; that all parties must ensure the implementation of the judgment cited above to the later; that His Eminence, Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi V remains the validly selected and elected Obong of Calabar and the patriarch of the Efik kingdom; that this official pronouncement by the state government has granted explicit recognition to His Eminence, Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi V as the Obong of Calabar; and brings to final closure the speculation, acrimony and disaffection that may have risen in the course of the tussle for this revered royal stool of the Efik kingdom.”
The government said, “His Eminence, Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi V should as a matter of The government said, “His Eminence, Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi V should as a matter of urgency and priority set up reconciliation team, whose primary duty is to bring the hitherto two contending parties on the tussle to a single harmonious, peaceful and progressive rulership of the Efik kingdom.”