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Leadership Tussle for Peace, Justice and Fairness in Aguobu Iwollo

For over 15 years, the Community has been embroiled in a leadership (Igweship) dispute, concerning which member village has the right to produce the traditional ruler of the Community. By the Community’s Constitution, the five (5) member villages of the Community  agreed that the Igweship of the Community shall rotate among the five villages in order of their seniority. The Community also agreed that any member village that has previously produced an Igwe would give way to other villages. The five villages of the Community, in order of their seniority, are as follows: (i) Ezeonyia; (ii) Ndibunagu; (iii) Amagu; (iv) Obinagu; and Owoloti.
Ezeonyia village had previously produced an Igwe in the person of HRH Igwe C.E. Achu. Notwithstanding this and the clear provisions of the Constitution of the Community, in 2007, the Enugu State government proceeded to select and install Chief G.A.N. Ofodile, from the Ezeonyia village, as the Igwe of the Community. This sheer, blatant violation of the Constitution, provoked agitations, and revolt amongst members of the Community – these agitations are still present to date. However, instead of causing any form of disturbance or resorting to self-help, the other four villages (Ndibunagu, Amagu, Obinagu, and Owoloti) approached the courts to resolve the dispute and emerged victorious. 
The judgments of the High Court and Court of Appeal
The members of the Community challenged the selection exercise and installation of Chief G.A.N. Ofodile as Igwe, by instituting Suit No. E/91/2008: C.A. Aliozo Esq & 4 Ors v G.A.N. Ofodile & Anor, at the High Court of Enugu state. The High Court ruled in favour of the four villages and nullified the Igweship of Chief G.A.N. Ofodile. The High Court held that it was rather the Ndibunagu village (being the next most senior village) that was the rightful village to produce the traditional ruler or Igwe of the Community.
Chief G.A.N. Ofodile appealed the decision of the High Court to the Court of Appeal, Enugu. By a unanimous decision delivered on 10 May 2021, the Court of Appeal upheld the decision of the High Court, nullified the Igweship of Chief G.A.N. Ofodile and held that the Ndibunagu village was the rightful village to produce the Igwe of the Community. This is widely reported in the National news as shown below:

9th September 2021

It is trite law that the Courts over the years have evolved various canons of interpretation of statutes…

8th June 2021

The Aguobu Iwollo Autonomous Community drafted a Constitution before the death of the previous Igwe, which provided that…

8th June 2021

Duty of court to give a holistic interpretation to a statute as required by law…

8th June 2021

According to the respondents, the Constitution provided that Igweship would rotate according to the seniority of the villages. Any village…

7th January 2022

Youths in four out of the five villages that make up Aguobu Iwollo Autonomous Community in Ezeagu Local government Area of Enugu…

6th January 2022

The youths from the four villages including, Ndibunagu, Obunagu, Amagu and Owolloti, marched through the…

9th January 2022

Aguobu Iwollo Community in Ezeagu Local Government Area of Enugu has called on the state Governor, Chief Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to intervene in the leadership crisis rocking the community…

7th January 2022

He recalled that the Aguobu Iwollo Community drafted a constitution in 2005 after it became autonomous and before the death of the previous Igwe C. E Achu and it provided that the Igweship would be rotated amongst the five villages that make up the community…

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