Protect monarchs from deposition, Oba of Benin tells FG
Benin monarch, Oba Ewuare II, yesterday, expressed the need for traditional rulers in the country to be protected against indiscriminate deposition by agents of states.
The monarch made the call when the President of Nigeria Union of Journalists, Chris Isiguzo, and other members of the National Executive Council (NEC) paid him a visit in his palace.
Ewuare II recalled how he made a personal presentation to President Muhammadu Buhari on the need for traditional rulers to be accorded protection against being deposed indiscriminately by agents of state.
The oba described as embarrassing to read on media platforms that some monarchs have been arrested or arraigned, perhaps for behaving a manner that is unbecoming of a traditional ruler.
He stated that if it is possible to define who a traditional ruler is, as defined by his father, Oba Erediauwa, in a paper he presented at the University of Benin years ago, many “self-acclaimed traditional rulers” will fall by the wayside.
He said: “You have found out that the problem we have in Nigeria is that almost everybody is His Royal Majesty, His imperial Majesty, His Royal Highness and so on and-so-forth. You also find out that traditional rulers are appointed and upgraded from one thing or the other. One day, somebody along the street can be picked and addressed as a traditional ruler.
“There are so many responsibilities that go with our own traditional institution in Benin. That is why it is easier when you are born into it and brought up into it. I do not know any other life rather than what I was born into right from childhood. This makes it a bit easier to handle responsibility.
“Even in Europe, it has not been easy for the European monarchs or the traditional rulers to be monarchs. In Germany, Netherlands, Russia, there were monarchs. Many lost their thrones.”
Earlier, Isiguzo appealed to governments at all levels to consider allowing traditional rulers to play their roles and assert their authorities, especially in arresting the high level of insecurity in the country.
“Whoever that is behind this insecurity must have come from a community,” Isiguzo said.