A new Attah Igala, HRM Mathew Alaji Opaluwa Oguche has been officially handed over his staff of office with a call on him to unite the Igala Kingdom towards contributing to the socio economic development of the country.
The Kogi State Governor, Alh. Yahaya Bello made the call for unity during the official presentation of Staff of office to the new Attah Igala in Idah today as the 28th Attah of the ancient Igala Kingdom.
The new Ata was administered his oath of office and allegiance at exactly 1:12pm by Barr. Dangana Ocheja in the full glare of thousands of onlookers from within and outside the State who converged on the Ata’s Palace in Idah.
Gov. Bello officially presented the staff of office to HRM Matthew Opaluwa at exactly 1:17pm in his capacity as the President of the Kogi State Council of Chiefs.
Gov. Bello congratulated the new Ata Igala on his emergence described his peaceful emergence as his administration’s determination to uphold equity, justice and in following due process and the rule of law.
Gov. Bello expressed satisfaction that his administration has graded and upgraded over one hundred chieftaincy stools under his leadership, said none of such upgrade witnessed rancour hinged it on leadership and political will of his administration.
The Governor said the era of imposition of traditional rulers on the people has become a thing of the past, expressed satisfaction with the mammoth crowd that graced the occasion, described it as a measure of acceptance.
Gov. Bello described the emergence of the Ata Igala as historic, urged the Royal father to reach out to those who contested with him, urged him to extend his hands of fellowship, warned against the politicization of the Ata Igala stool.
The Governor reiterated his administration’s commitment to the welfare of the traditional institution in the state, assured that the coming days will witness more of his administration’s commitment to make the traditional institution an envy.
The Governor concluded by paying glowing tribute to the immediate past Attah Igala, Late Chief Michael Idakwo, described him as a man passionate about Peace and development.
In his response, HRM Matthew Opaluwa promised to use the Ata Igala title in galvernizing the people to the socioeconomic development of the country.
He described his emergence as diving, urged all Igala sons and daughters to unite for the development of the Kingdom.
The new Ata Igala thanked Gov. Yahaya Bello for creating an enabling environment for his successful emergence, urged others who contested with him to join hands with him in moving forward the kingdom.
In his remarks at the occasion, President Mohammadu Buhari, represented by Mohammed Maigari Dingyadi, Minister for Police Affairs, described the new Ata as the right choice, urged him to unite the Igala people towards socio economic development of the Country.
He described the acceptance of the new Ata by the excitement and happiness that greeted the celebration as an indication of better things to come, praised the hitch free process that led to the selection of the new Ata Igala.
Earlier in a welcome remarks, Barr. Salami Ozigi Didat, Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, said due process was followed in the selection of the new Ata commended the people for the rancour free selection process, described it as unprecedented and the enabling environment created by the State Government.
In a speech delivered by Mr. Daniel Alifa Akoh, Chairman Igala Elders Advisory Council on behalf of the Council, expressed satisfaction with the emergence of the new Ata, congratulated HRM Matthew Alaji Opaluwa for sailing through the intricate nomination process with minimum rancour and bad blood, urged the new Ata to use his position to inculcate traditional values and to create the enabling environment that would attract sustainable development to Igala land.
The occasion was attended by former Governor’s of the State, top Traditional Rulers led by the Sultan of Sokoto, Captains of Industry and Politicians from various divide, Igala sons and daughters from across the globe, witnessed the official installation of the Ata Igala.
Ata Mathew Opaluwa was born in to the Royal family of late Chief Opaluwa Ogwuche Akpa, he is the ninth of the sixteen surviving children and fourth of the six male children of late chief Matthew Oguche of the Aju Anneacho ruling dynasty of Igala Kingdom. He was born 54 years ago, holds a Master’s degree in Administration in 1997 after graduating from the same University in 1983