- There is a clash of tradition in Rivers state as a royal family accused the state government of burying their monarch against their custom
- The family said the Rivers state government buried the late king in a cemetery outside his kingdom on the grounds that he died of Covid-19
- Elder Orlu who is the family head said the king did not die of Covid-19 just as he called on Governor Wike to allow the family exhume the body of a monarch for a proper burial
A royal family in Rivers state wants Governor Nyesom Wike to allow them to exhume the body of a monarch for a befitting burial.
The late king of Akpor Kingdom in Obio/Akpor local government area, King Anele Orlu Oriebe, had been reportedly buried by the Rivers state government in line with COVID-19 protocol on the grounds that he died of the virus.
His family, however, insisted that the monarch did not die of Covid-19. According to them, the monarch died following complications arising from an accident, The Nation reports.
The family head, Elder Kingsley Kinika Orlu, condemned the government for burying the Akpor king in a shameful manner.
Orlu said Oriebe was interred in a government cemetery without the knowledge of the kingdom.
The family head said it was a taboo in Ikwerre land for a king to be buried outside his kingdom.
He, therefore, called on patriotic individuals to prevail on the government to allow them to excavate the grave of the king and pick some of his bones to conduct traditional burial rites.
His words: “There was no test carried out to prove that he had COVID-19. It was when he died that we saw three men, who came to the mortuary to take his sample. We did not see the test result.
“This is unbelievable. Even if it is his bone, they should give us for burial. It is no longer speculation that he has been buried.”
Meanwhile, in order to discourage the violation of the lockdown order in Rivers state, Governor Wike has imposed the sum of N10 million as fine on any violator.
According to Pastor Paulinus Nsirim, the commissioner for information and communication, Governor Wike enacted this harsh punishment during the state's executive council in a meeting presided over by him on Thursday, June 25.
Nsirim said that the council agreed that henceforth, would-be couples in the state must apply to the governor through the social welfare and rehabilitation commission.
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