The Efik highest king-making body, the Etuboms Traditional Council, on Monday returned Edidem Ekpo Abasi-Otu as the Obong of Calabar.
This came barely four days after the Court of Appeal declared the stool vacant and ordered a fresh selection process to elect a new monarch.
The appellate court on Thursday upheld the ruling of a state High Court, which declared the emergence of Otu as the Obong of Calabar in 2008 as a nullity.
The appellate court also ruled that a former Finance Minister, Chief Anthony Ani, on whose instance the lower court initially ousted Otu, was not qualified to vote or seek to be the Obong.
However, the 12 kingmakers in the ETC on Monday converged in the Obong’s Palace and unanimously returned Otu as the Calabar monarch.
In a statement by the ETC Chairman, Micah Archibong and the Secretary, Etim Asuquo, the kingmakers said they conducted a fresh selection in accordance with the provisions of the 2002 Constitution of Etuboms’ Council.
The statement read, “Following the judgment of the Court of Appeal sitting at Calabar on July 4, 2013 ordering the selection of another Obong of Calabar, the most senior Etubom of Atai Iboku group, Lawrence Asido, presented their unanimously selected nominee to the throne in the person of Etubom Ekpo Okon Abasi Otu of Adiabo Ikot Mbo Otu House.
“Having been fully satisfied with the candidate’s qualification and eligibility, and there being no dissent whatsoever among the kingmakers, the Etuboms’ Conclave therefore declared him the successor, and hereby convey his proclamation as the successor to the throne of Obong of Calabar, today, July 8, 2013.”