Agbalanze & Constitutionalism

Gallery Pics 3 Description

The in-built relationship between the Agbalanze Onitsha Society makes it mandatory for the President and members of the Association to pay homage and renew their loyalty to the monarch immediately after the red cap chiefs have done so at the annual Ofala Festival of the Obi.

Article 4(a-g)

Article 4(a-g) of the amended Constitution 2013 deals exhaustively with membership of Agbalanze Onitsha Cultural Association. Among other provisions, the Constitution states:

  • The Association as a block shall be composed of all the several Onitsha Ozo kindred units who are the owners of Ozo.
  • Membership of the Association shall be open to any Onitsha male indigene who has been initiated into Ozo by, and in accordance with, the established usages and customs of the Ozo kindred unit whence he hails, and has performed Ibu Ego Ozo, Ina Obibi, Egwu Efifie and Igba Ugwo Ozo ceremonies, to the satisfaction of the Association.

Executives

The association’s affairs are run by the Executive Council in the following order of seniority:

  • The President,
  • The Vice President,
  • The Secretary,
  • The Treasurer,
  • The Financial Secretary,
  • The Assistant Secretary, and
  • The Assistant Financial Secretary.

The management of the affairs of this Association which was incorporated as Registered Trustee under the Companies and Allied Matters Act of 1990, PART C, at the Corporate Affairs Commission, Abuja, in 2007, has been ongoing and in compliance with the Articles of the Amended Constitution of 2013. According to the report of the secretary for the period January 20l2 to January 2015, this incorporation has put paid to any idea of factionalisation of the association. Mention must be made of the Supreme Court judgment in the matter of Akunwata Ogbogu Mbanefo against Agbalanze Onitsha Executive in case NoS.C. 23 8/2008 delivered on Friday 14th February, 2014.

The Agbalanze Association has continuously rebuffed requests for autonomy from some of the diaspora branches. Emphatically, the mother Association has always insisted that there is and will continue to be one Constitution of the Prestigious and Ancient Agbalanze Cultural Association of Onitsha in which are enshrined ONE OZO initiation and ONE ITU UGO Ceremonies. More important, these activities MUST all take place in Onitsha under the Mother association.

Article 25

The unity of Agbalanze Onitsha is affirmed in Article 25 of its revised 2013 Constitution as follows:

The unity of Agbalanze Onitsha is sacrosanct and must be strictly preserved. ltiwa Ozo by any sub-kindred unit or group creates disunity and disrupts the solidarity of our Ancient Institution.

  • Any attempt to fractionalize Agbalanze Onitsha shall be stoutly resisted and shall be Ellyatoned for by the attempting group to the satisfaction of the Association.

In principle, Agbalanze Onitsha with the approval of Ime-obi may accept Itiwa Ozo by any sub-kindred unit or group in a case in which the dispute deals purely with Okwu Mmuo. In such a case, the majority opinion of the members of Agbalanze shall be obtained at a General Meeting before approval is given for any sub-kindred unit or group to break away from its parent Ozo kindred group. Apart from disputes concerning Mmuo, the association shall not permit any Itiwa Ozo among its fold. Imeobi’s responsibility involves “Okwu muo”.
Agbalanze Onitsha as a social body cannot adjudicate on issues of “Muo”.

  • If any sub-kindred unit or group wishes to break away from its Ozo kindred unit, a written application shall be made to the Agbalanze Executive which shall constitute a panel composed of the Agbalanze Executive Committee and Elders Advisory Committee to deliberate on the issue.
    The recommendations of this panel shall be presented to Agbalanze Onitsha for ratification at the meeting. This aspect of the constitution is contentious as Ime-Obi insists that it is their prerogative and that the Agbalanze Onitsha Cultural Association amended constitution of 20l3 overreached itself in this regard.
  • For the purposes of this Constitution, the recognized Ozo kindred groups are as listed in Appendix “C” to the a mended Constitution 2013 and Article 26 (i) and 27 (a and c).
  • Any member of Agbalanze Onitsha who sues the Association to Court without 30 days pre-action notice stands suspended by the Association. On re-admission, such member shall refund to the association the amount spent on the prosecution of the case.
  • Any member of Agbalanze Onitsha who is dissatisfied with any disciplinary action taken against him shall have the option to appeal to the Elders Advisory Committee through the Executive Committee, within one (1) month from the date of the disciplinary action.
  • Motions for stay of execution of the sanction imposed on the member shall not be granted while the matter in on appeal.

Article 25

The unity of Agbalanze Onitsha is affirmed in Article 25 of its revised 2013 Constitution as follows:

The unity of Agbalanze Onitsha is sacrosanct and must be strictly preserved. ltiwa Ozo by any sub-kindred unit or group creates disunity and disrupts the solidarity of our Ancient Institution.

  • Any attempt to fractionalize Agbalanze Onitsha shall be stoutly resisted and shall be Ellyatoned for by the attempting group to the satisfaction of the Association.

In principle, Agbalanze Onitsha with the approval of Ime-obi may accept Itiwa Ozo by any sub-kindred unit or group in a case in which the dispute deals purely with Okwu Mmuo. In such a case, the majority opinion of the members of Agbalanze shall be obtained at a General Meeting before approval is given for any sub-kindred unit or group to break away from its parent Ozo kindred group. Apart from disputes concerning Mmuo, the association shall not permit any Itiwa Ozo among its fold. Imeobi’s responsibility involves “Okwu muo”.
Agbalanze Onitsha as a social body cannot adjudicate on issues of “Muo”.

  • If any sub-kindred unit or group wishes to break away from its Ozo kindred unit, a written application shall be made to the Agbalanze Executive which shall constitute a panel composed of the Agbalanze Executive Committee and Elders Advisory Committee to deliberate on the issue.
    The recommendations of this panel shall be presented to Agbalanze Onitsha for ratification at the meeting. This aspect of the constitution is contentious as Ime-Obi insists that it is their prerogative and that the Agbalanze Onitsha Cultural Association amended constitution of 20l3 overreached itself in this regard.
  • For the purposes of this Constitution, the recognized Ozo kindred groups are as listed in Appendix “C” to the a mended Constitution 2013 and Article 26 (i) and 27 (a and c).
  • Any member of Agbalanze Onitsha who sues the Association to Court without 30 days pre-action notice stands suspended by the Association. On re-admission, such member shall refund to the association the amount spent on the prosecution of the case.
  • Any member of Agbalanze Onitsha who is dissatisfied with any disciplinary action taken against him shall have the option to appeal to the Elders Advisory Committee through the Executive Committee, within one (1) month from the date of the disciplinary action.
  • Motions for stay of execution of the sanction imposed on the member shall not be granted while the matter in on appeal.
book-cover-3d

The featured book titled ‘Origin & Developments – Agbalanze Onitsha Cultural Association’ is a major contribution to the growing body of published materials on, and documentation of, the life of the people of Onitsha Ado N’ldu. It calls for-further research and understanding which will enable the present generation to effectively strengthen and re-position our Ozo institution and Agbalanze Onitsha Cultural Association for the future. I welcome this book and commend it to a worldwide readership of both Onitsha indigenes and everyone interested in indigenous cultures and traditions.

His Majesty, Nnaemeka Alfred Ugochukwu Achebe, CFR, mni
Obi of Onitsha
Thinking of getting the book?

looking for a first-class information on ‘Ozo’ title taking, proceedings & developments by the association.