THE members of the family of the late Chief Anthony Eronmosele Enahoro, Adolor of Onewa/Adolor of Uromi, have warned in the strongest terms that they would resist any attempt to insult the memory of the highly respected nationalist.
The ire of the family was stirred by the decision of the traditional ruler of their community, Onogie of Uromi, to bestow the hereditary title specifically created for the late nationalist on the former Minister of Works, Michael Onolememen as the new Adolor of Uromi, at a ceremony holding on Easter Monday (tomorrow).
Renowned journalist and member of the family, Peter Enahoro, in statement made available to Sunday Sun by email, implored the dignitaries invited to the event to have a rethink and avoid what would amount to “inadvertently giving support to an insult to the memory of Chief Anthony Enahoro with their presence at the silly ceremony.”
The family further said: “It is our intention to counter this unnecessary, grubby, money seeking enterprise with a peaceful resolution. We know also that there are political elements in the conspiracy whose approval is predicated on their belief that only by erasing the memory of Chief Anthony Enahoro can their own legacy enjoy a lease in Uromi.
“Even this statement is issued with reluctance, to a point of sadness — sadness, because the good memory of Chief Anthony Eronmosele Enahoro, a man beloved across the length and breadth of Nigeria, does not deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as a murky story of financial greed and shameful social climbing conspiracy. The Enahoro Family strove to keep a lid on an artificially framed crisis deliberately created to pervert the legitimate succession to Tony’s title of Adolor of Uromi.”
Delving into the history of the Adolor of Uromi title, the family said the late nationalist who as “Omi-Erhanme” (royal aristocrat) – his mother being the daughter of Onogie Ogbidi Okojie, late Anthony Enahoro’s father, a great-grandson of Onogie Okolo, father and immediate predecessor of Ogbidi, he did not need to have a chieftaincy title, but it became necessary to take a title, to end snobbery he had been experiencing in the Western Region government, who disregarded him for being simply Mr. Enahoro.
The family explained further: “Tony reported his growing annoyance in Ibadan to his uncle, Prince Uwagbale, the reigning Onogie. It was agreed that an exception to the rule be made for him; hence a suitable chieftaincy title was sought for Omi-Erhanme Tony Enahoro. Someone came up with “Adolor”. The name best summed up Tony’s service to his people. There was a hitch, however. Adolor was the name of one of the most effective Obas of Benin and custom forbade anyone to use the name of an Oba living or dead in the kingdom. Permission of Oba Akenzua, father of the present paramount ruler was sought and granted to Tony. Tony may have had a foresight of a future that no one else apparently foresaw at the time. He became Adolor not only of Uromi but also separately albeit simultaneously, Adolor of Onewa, his paternal family village in the federated principality of 21 “villages” that make up Uromi, today a local government in its own right. The family stressed that the Onogie’s decision to bestow the title on Onolememen is futile effort to prevent the late nationalist’s legitimate heir, Kenneth Enahoro, from assuming the title. The family urged Onolimemen to put an end to the charade.