Chairman of Delta North Traditional Rulers Forum, Obi (Prof) Chike Edozien, Friday, described those behind the formation of Anioma Progressives Union to displace Anioma Congress as coup plotters.
Edozien who spoke to newsmen after a meeting of the Forum held in his Palace, which was attended by over 25 Traditional Rulers, said: “We know that people who cannot live together cannot make progress. Getting together, planning, articulating, moving forward.
“We the Anioma people have set up over the years, organisations for us to survive and progress. The traditional rulers who have been ruling the people have their own meetings that is the Anioma Traditional Rulers’ Forum, but jointly we have the Anioma Congress.
“The common people, the political class all our intelligent people meet together to deal with political and other issues. And they meet under the auspices of the Anioma Congress under the leadership of Chief Benjamin Elue.
“When necessary, the whole body – the traditional rulers and the congress meet together, and that constitute the Anioma People’s Forum. So, these have been in existence and still, in existence, there is no vacuum. Saying that the Anioma Congress does not exist is trying to carry out coup, and there is no room for that.”
On 2023 gubernatorial election in the state, the Monarch said: “First we called a meeting to address the issues because ethnic groups are coming out to say they want to contest for the governor and they want support.
And so we called the meeting to address the issues. As the general in our midst, give us time to deliberate and make up our mind. Even in the meantime,
“When they come, we will call a meeting to address them. For now, we are open to aspirants for consultation but we will see how things develop, and then we will know what to do. We supported Okowa on the ground of rotation.
“If Isoko come now and insist that it is their turn, what do we tell them? This is open for discussion. With time, we will take a position on zoning when we might have had consultation with our political class because some of the issues have not been discussed.
“For instance, if we agree on rotation, will it be on senatorial district basis or ethnic basis? We will discuss this. If it is rotation by senatorial districts, the Urhobo people of Delta central will have a say. If it is ethnic basis, then only two who have not had the chance, that is Ijaw and Isoko.
“We have not discussed that yet. And if it is to rotate among senatorial districts, that it started from central, where will it start again has not been agreed. So we are open to discussion.”
Meanwhile, the royal fathers also resolved that the Anioma Traditional Rulers Forum has no double leadership, emphasizing that the only recognised leadership of the Forum is the Asagba of Asaba Obi (Prof) Chike Edozien.
“We, therefore, ask the general public to disregard any publication as it affects Delta North Traditional Rulers Forum that’s is not coming out from the office of our leader, Prof Edozien.”