Bishop Okpaleke is the pioneer Local Ordinary of Nigeria’s Ekwulobia Diocese that was erected on 5 March 2020.
The 59-year-old Nigerian Bishop was appointed the Local Ordinary of Ahiara Diocese in December 2012. His appointment was rejected by a section of Clergy and Laity of the Nigerian Diocese.
The rejection of the Clergy of Nigeria’s Awka Diocese was based on the claim that the Episcopal candidate comes from outside the dominant ethnic group of Ahiara Diocese, the Mbaise, and that Priests of the Diocese feel under-represented in the Catholic Church hierarchy in the West African nation.
He was impeded from setting foot in the territory covered by Ahiara Diocese and many Church activities halted including the ordination of candidates to Diaconate.