Indigenes of Afaraukwu ancient Kingdom in Umuahia North Local Government Area of Abia State have agreed to suspend the planned this year’s new yam festival scheduled to commence August 30th in their various communities.
Rising from a crucial meeting at the palace of His Royal Highness, Eze Edward Ibeabuchi on Wednesday, the Afaraukwu communities said that it was of no use to them to celebrate this year’s new yam festival when their son and a prince in the Afaraukwu ancient kingdom, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) was still in detention.
Infonet9ja.com gathered that the cancellation of this year’s new yam festival was the second time the Afaraukwu Ancient Kingdom was suspending their much anticipated yearly cultural festival after they did same in honour of Kanu’s parents; HRH Eze Israel and Ugoeze Sally Kanu.
HRH Eze Edward Ibeabuchi and HRH Eze Philip Ukaegbu and their president generals in a communique issued to journalists at the end of their meeting stated that there was no need for them to be celebrating their new yam festival while their son is being detained in the DSS custody.
Eze Ibeabuchi and Eze Ukaegbu while raising concerns over the health of the IPOB leader; Kanuin the DSS custody, however urged their subjects, firnds and lovers of Nnamdi Kanu to use the period of the new yam festival suspension for sober reflection. This is even as they also demanded that Kanu should be given fair and unbiased trial by the court.
“We regret to announce to the Afaraukwu people and the public at large that this year’s New Yam festival has been suspended for the following reasons.
“To express our concern over the plight of our son, Prince Nnamdi Kanu, who has been in DSS custody in Nigeria. We seek out son be given a fair and unbiased hearing on a court of competent jurisdiction based on both national and international laws.
“Our community cannot be celebrating while our son is languishing in detention. Popular Igbo adage says that one does not abandon his goods in the market because they were not sold.
“We are not unaware of the general insecurity in the country today, and therefore doesn’t want to do anything that could escalate the already tensed situation.
“Afaraukwu is a peaceful and law abiding community, we shall not involve ourselves in any activity that will cause breach of the law and order, nor associate ourselves with any unlawful organization,” posited Afaraukwu community.
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They went ahead to call on the state and federal government, and heads of the security agencies to ensure that the insecurity challenges that the country is facing was tackled.