TOR TIV STOOL: Benue Prince Threatens Lawsuit Against Governor Ortom [SEE WHY]
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Tiv Prince Writes Gov.Ortom On Tor Tiv V Selection
Faults Amended Chieftaincy law
Threatens Court Action
Your Excellency, Sir,
THE PROVISIONS FOR CHIEFS TO BE APPOINTING CHIEFS ARE NOT AND CANNOT BE TIV TRADITION,
with clarity of conscience, in my position as initiated and consecrated traditional prince of Tiv land (Kon-tindir U Tiv), hereby wish to write to you and complain that the provisions for chiefs to be appointing chiefs are not and cannot be Tiv tradition.
The Benue State Council of Chiefs and Traditional Council Bill 2016 that you signed into law has violated Tiv tradition by commission and omission as stated herein:
(1) Tiv traditional council of elders has not been recognized in the Benue State Council of Chiefs and Traditional Council Law 2016, even as Tiv traditional council of elders superimposes Tiv traditional council of chiefs.
(2) Benue State Council of Chiefs and Traditional Council Law 2016 has imposed “Electoral college” on Tiv traditional chieftaincy appointment and impaired the prerogative of community elders who are kingmakers to appoint chiefs variously in Tiv land.
(3) The injurious Electoral College comprises 6 first class chiefs, 14 second class chiefs, and 28 third class chiefs mandated to cast votes and appoint Tor Tiv. It is elders who are arbiters of Tiv clans that have the imperative traditional responsibility to appoint Tor Tiv and not chiefs.
(4) Tiv elders have neither authorized any chief nor permitted any politician and non-traditionalist to be appointing a chief on their behalf.
(5) Traditionally, Tiv appointment of chiefs is subject to chieftaincy adjudication (Tor Orun) and not casting of votes.
(6) The taking of Tiv traditional oath is sealed with the swearing of Swem (Tiv ancestral religion), which has never proved invidious; and not Bible, which has neither condemned nor substituted the efficacy of real Swem.
(7) There is no provision in the Benue State Council of Chiefs and Traditional Council Law 2016 for a traditional stool to be loaned to another community in Tiv land, in the event of absence of a traditional prince (not royal prince) within the earmarked community; bearing in mind that Schedule 3to Section 16 of the said law is not yet harmonized properly as per Ipusu and Ichongo divisions.
(8) Financial incentive has not been provided for a supreme council of elders but the council of chiefs has handy remuneration; thereby, biased priority has been created sentimentally in the said law.
(9) The incumbent Benue State House of Assembly, as the dominance and architect of the Benue State Council of Chiefs and Traditional Council Law 2016, has freedom to make laws that does not presuppose destruction of Tiv traditional elements that make and keep Tiv together as a people of their own conviction; and not otherwise.
(10) The Benue State Council of Chiefs and Traditional Council Law 2016 has created and not prohibited grounds for unnecessary power struggle, usurpation, and political interference in Tiv traditional chieftaincy affairs.
Your Excellency, may it please you not to allow doubts to assail your focused mind, as per your consequent decision to cause immediate amendment of the Benue State Council of Chiefs and Traditional Council Law 2016; based on the following arguments:
(1) A wrong thing, no matter how long it prevails, does not transmogrify into the right thing; therefore, how long would Tiv land suffer fire and vengeance at the mercy of transgressed traditional leadership and political interference in chieftaincy appointment; before a consequent return of Tiv land to her actual traditional values?
(2) When Tiv traditional codes are destroyed and lives fall for greedy desires of the power hungry, should Tiv land celebrate positive restoration or negative change of Tiv tradition at instance of your worthy Government?
(3) The vestiges of Tiv traditional leadership, if not seen as too essential to be wasted on misplaced priority and flirting figments of your imagination that Tiv traditional leadership is evil; what is the indication that Western ethics have redeemed, solved, and eradicated successfully the world’s problems of sin, suffering, and death; to necessitate antagonism and abrogation of Tiv tradition; and not revival and upholding of Tiv traditional virtues?
(4) What traditional assurance forces its own stand to purpose in Tiv land that a political impostor would triumph over Tor Tiv throne peacefully, now that nobody needs a prophet to create public awareness that anything or anyone without honour to Tiv tradition is an offence and enemy to Tiv land?
(5) If responsible Tiv people attend to tolerance that the past Government made mistake and abused Tiv land, in its effort to promulgate and establish a law that would improve and protect Tiv identity and interest; what is the cultural certainty that a similar misconduct or omission by the incumbent Government would not be deliberate injustice?
(6) Is there any affirmation that Wanteregh Paul Unongo, The Supreme Traditional Kingmaker of Tiv Land, would kowtow to political pressure and anoint a political impostor as Begha U Tiv?
(7) Tiv elders have alleged that you meddled with Tiv traditional chieftaincy affair by collecting the Tor Tiv sceptre when the Acting Tor Tiv, His Royal Highness, Ivokor Unongo, presented it to you; and you unceremoniously announced the demise of Tor Tiv IV; and that the only way out for you is to allow elders to appoint a traditional prince of Ipusu extraction as Tor Tiv and enable the return of Tiv land; nevertheless, it is a possible or impossible requirement?
(8) The best relations of a usurper die every 3 to 4 years to substitute the death of the usurper as a divine punishment, which is described as the chief’s washing of hands before eating with elders or the appreciation of chieftaincy (Tor-yolun); however, should usurpation of Tiv traditional throne continue to eliminate resourceful sons and daughters of Tiv land or it is best to eliminate usurpation by allowing elders their imperative right to appoint Tor (chief) traditionally?
(9) Chief Abu King Shuluwa of Katsina-Ala is in a better position to tell you, if Swem has failed Tiv land actually, in answer to your published public assault on Tiv tradition that the new Tor Tiv must swear on Bible; hence Chief Shuluwa’s devious instigation of former Governor Fidelis Makkah to approve Dr Alfred Akawe Torkula’s usurpation of Tor Tiv throne in 1991; that nevertheless has resulted to elimination of political opponents, denigration of Tiv tradition, abandoning of professed Christian faith, causing of Fulani invasion of Tiv land, and the improper resort of the Tor Tiv IV to Ibamegh and Poor rituals that led to his own shameful end?
(10) Tiv land wishes to pray that Tiv traditional leadership should not continue on a wrong course and cause a court of competent jurisdiction to determine, if the provisions for chiefs to be appointing chiefsis Tiv tradition and not violation of Tiv tradition by rule of law;
while Tiv elders and traditionalists await the timely and proper amendment of the Benue State Council of Chiefs and Traditional Council Law 2016 before Tor Tiv V and various chiefs are appointed in Tiv land, My Governor, “Tahav ka tyo.” It is not said: “Tahav ka tor” in Tiv land.
Sir, you have brought out cultural dance (by challenging Tiv tradition) consequently and Tiv elders are no longer hiding the song; thereby, Tiv tradition is demanding immediate apology and restitution from you.
I would be glad for your positive response. Thanks for your co-operation.
Tansimaria Kwaghtagher Ahar Galu (Prince).
The Speaker, Benue State House of Assembly;
Benue State Attorney General, Ministry of Justice;
Wantaregh Paul Unongo, Supreme Traditional Kingmaker of Tiv Land;
President, Mzough U Tiv;
Commissioner – Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs;
The Acting Tor Tiv, Tiv Area Traditional Council.