Odigbo natives and Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, the wife of Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State, are at odds over the appointment of a caretaker chairman for the recently created Odigbo Local Council Development Area, or LCDA.
Eucharia Nwamara, the councilor representing Ore Ward, was purportedly proposed by the First Lady to serve as the new caretaker chairman.
The Odigbo’s indigenous people, however, have vehemently opposed this choice, claiming that it would never be permitted on their land.
The locals strongly objected to Nwamara’s selection, saying it was improper for the First Lady to pick a politician of Igbo descent as the caretaker chairman of Odigbo LCDA.
They demanded that the government reconsider the selection and give top priority to the appointment of a caretaker chairman who respects the community’s cultural values and customs in addition to being conversant with its requirements.
Oba Rufus Adegboyega Akinrinmade, Adebusoye 1, and the Odigbo citizens who spoke out in a meeting at the palace of the Orunja of Odigbo kingdom argued that it would be an aberration for their traditional rulers to follow orders from a non-indigenous person appointed as the Caretaker Chairman of the Council.
Mayowa Akinfolarin, a former lawmaker in the House of Representatives, stated: “We have this historic precedent of ensuring peace in our domain. We have urged peace among the youth.
“We take a variety of actions to maintain peace. We are expressing our love for the First Lady and our neighbors to her. Anything that may disturb the tranquility in this area would be rejected by us.
According to Dr. Tunji Moyero, the Ondo APC’s organizing secretary, “Our king cannot go to council to take orders from someone who is not from here.” Our children will fight if we choose not to. To this, everyone must rise.
“If there is anything in that regard, we have no other way, and our youth are ready,” they begged the governor’s wife. We are standing up for what is right.
The First Lady’s behavior, according to community leader Femi Olafumiloye, would upset the calm in the neighborhood.
“How can a complete stranger serve as the first caretaker chairman of an LCDA? It is a heartfelt request. She has the right to change her mind. We can’t handle it. Make one of our people chairman. How can we interact with an Igbo woman?” He asked.
Oba Akinrinmade urged his subjects to let peace reign and pleaded with the First Lady not to endanger community harmony.
He claimed that Nwamara had visited him two weeks prior and had expressed support for another individual taking over as Caretaker Chairman; he added that she had also informed him that she had turned down the offer when she had been contacted.
When contacted, Nwamara stated that she had lived in Odigbo for more than 38 years and had contributed to its growth.
“I work in politics. Life is full of opportunities. I was unaware of any protests. I have spent more than 35 years living in Odigbo. I have contributed to community improvement. I’m hearing rumors, too,” she added.