Traditional rites for selection of new Aku-Uka of Wukari in Taraba State have commenced.
The selection process is usually done in top secret and government’s interference is not accepted.
Contenders from the two ruling houses – Ba_Ma and Bagya – have expressed their desire to become the next Aku-Uka.
Five kingmakers have the sole responsibility to select the new monarch.
At the end of their selection process, they would present one name to the state government.
Unlike other traditional institutions, where a governor decide who becomes the next Emir or chief as the case may be, the system in Wukari is different.
Similarly all rituals and traditional rites for burial and selection of Aku is done at Puje shrine.
Interested and qualified candidates are at liberty to present themselves for the position of Aku when the throne is vacant.
However the two ruling houses, under the tradition of Jukun would carry out in-house consultation and agree on only one person from each of the two ruling houses.
The two ruling houses would submit the names of the contenders to kingmakers and the selection and confirmation will be subjected to ritual process and at the end one person will emerge as victorious.
The Kunvyi, as chief custodian of instrument of rites and ritual of Aku selection process will exercise his power over decision of the other four king makers.
Under the culture and tradition of Jukun, the Kunvyi is believed to be more in touch with the powers behind the entire ritual system, hence his decision is final.
It is the duty of the kingmakers to present the name the person they selected to the government.
Barrister Haruna Adamu, Commissioner of Information, who is a historian on Jukun Culture and tradition, told Daily Trust that the selection of new Aku-Uka is solely the duty of five kingmakers headed by Kunvyi and the process is done secretly through the performance traditional rites.
At the end of the ritual rites, one person will emerge victorious, and all other contenders would have to accept the decision of the five kingmakers.
“The Kunvyi is the head of kingmakers and they are five in number including the Kunvyi who has the final say over the four other king makers,” he said.
“Any person that emerge will be accepted by all the ruling houses and the government has no option but to crown the person as the new Aku_Uka.”
“The Aku _ Uka throne is purely traditional and has no mix with any religion” an elderly Jukun man said.
He said under the Jukun culture the decision of the five kingmakers is final and government have no right to interfere with the selection process.
Finding revealed the late Aku_Uka Shekarau Agyu died long ago before announcement of his demise was made was made on Saturday 10 October.
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