By Chukwudi Abiandu
The confusion trailing the conferment of the title of Omu of Anioma on Martha Dunkwu, who is also the Omu of Okpanam has been blamed on the government that issued a certificate of approval to the Omu without ensuring that a due process of securing the consent of the entire Anioma nation through their respective monarchs was achieved.
The Odogwu of Okpanam, Chief Pater Dunkwu, who just entered the nonagenarian class as he turned 90 years this week, and an uncle to Martha Dunkwu disclosed this in an interview with Banneronlinenews.com, especially held to commemorate his new age status. There is no confusion in Okpanam as the prefix of His Royal Majesty resides in the Ugoani, who is the monarch, he said.
Apparently dispelling the recent controversy over whether the prefix of Her Royal Majesty attached to Martha Dunkwu as Omu of Anioma places her in the same pedestal in rank with Okpanam’s monarch, who is the Ugoani of Okpanam, Chief Dunkwu said: “ Now you talked about Ugoani and the Omu, they are two distinct things. The confusion and the apparent misunderstanding was created by the government itself. Yes, and the traditional rulers in the area. I understand that somewhere, somehow, my niece was conferred with the title of Omu of Anioma.
He continued: “Omu of Anioma is non-existent. Nobody has the right to confer that. And when that announcement was made, the kings of the various kingdoms should have queried the source of it. Anioma is made up of many kingdoms. If we are going to create it, it will be all the kings in Anioma coming together and giving it. But the irony of it is that from the government, they issued a certificate to her.”
Clarifying further, Chief Dunkwu pointed out that no due process was taken to bring her into that position, except that “It was by an announcement. I know that the government issued a certificate, and the Obis and so forth kept quiet.”
He revealed that it is the Obi of Ubulu-Unor who conferred the title of Omu of Anioma on Martha Dunkwu.
On why she adopts the prefix of Her Royal Majesty, a prefix that only monarchs should use, Chief Dunkwu said: “That’s what government has to explain. She was conferred with the title of Omu of Okpanam, that’s what we know her as, but the Obi of Ubulu-unor conferred the Omu of Anioma. I don’t know of her majesty side; it is derived from that of Ubulu-unor, not that of Okpanam.
“ As far as Okpanam is concerned, there is no confusion because Ugoani is the majesty we have here,” Chief Dunkwu said.
• Full interview to be published soon.
By Chukwudi Abiandu