Taraba: Controversy Erupts As Gov Kefas Proposes Bill To Reshape Takum Traditional Stool

The decision of Governor Agbu Kefas of Taraba State to propose an executive bill that could reshape the traditional leadership landscape in Takum Local Government Council of the state has continued to spark controversy.

Presented to the State House of Assembly on Monday, February 19th, 2024, the bill seeks to rename the title of the paramount ruler of Takum, traditionally known as “Ukwe Takum” in the Kuteb language, to “Kuru Takum”, in the Jukun language.

Additionally, the bill proposes the introduction of a rotational system for the first-class throne of Takum, allowing tribes such as the Jukun and Chamba to assume the position.

The proposal has ignited strong opposition from members of the Kuteb community, who assert their historical dominance in the traditional leadership of Takum.

Expressing their concerns in a press statement on Tuesday, the Kuteb people, who claim to have ruled Takum for centuries, fear that the bill would not only erase their cultural heritage but also subject them to minority rule.

Signed by Ande Filli, the Kuteb called for the preservation of their traditional leadership structure and the withdrawal of the proposed legislation.

They urged the governor and the Taraba State House of Assembly to reconsider their actions and uphold the historical rights of the Kuteb people.

The controversy surrounding the bill has begun to attract national attention, with traditional leaders, political figures, and civil society members weighing in on the issue.

As calls for dialogue and reconciliation between the concerned parties intensify, stakeholders are seeking a resolution that respects the cultural heritage and rights of all communities involved.

The Kuteb, who could not fathom why the governor is bent on “destroying the Ukwe Takum dynasty”, urged President Bola Tinubu, the National Security Adviser, Chief of Defense Staff, Inspector General of Police, and others, to intervene in the matter.

They as well beckoned to traditional rulers including the Sultan of Sokoto, Ooni of Ife, Aku-Uka, Taraba Traditional Council, and all individuals of goodwill to urge Governor Kefas and the Speaker of the Taraba State House of Assembly to cease the action.

“We request the withdrawal of the bill, rectification of the Takum boundary, and the proper handing over of the staff of office to Ukwe Takum,” the Kuteb said in the statement signed by Ande Filli.

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