Ijaw/Itsekiri Communities Tackles Oba, Rejects Imposed Benin Ruler

Communities of Ijaw and Itesekiri extractions in Edo state have protested against the imposition of a Bini traditional head on them.

The communities stated that the ‘Enogie’ imposed on them is unacceptable as they are radically different in all ramifications from the Binis.

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They protested against the modern day colonialism in their age-long communities, carrying placards with inscriptions such as: “Enogie you are not an indigene of Kolokolo”, “Leave our community alone”, “Ajatiton is not under enogie”, “Nigeria Constitution does not recognize your position” and others.

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Addressing newsmen at the Ologbo Town Hall, Tuesday, October 13th, 2020

According to Mr. Greg Temisan Luma and Mr. Berlin Tiemo, the communities have their own traditional administrative structure in place from time immemorial, even before the advent of colonial rule dating over 400 years.

That is in vast contrast with the 1988 “Enogie imposition” in Ologbo, saying “we shall resist this aberration with the last pint of our blood”.

In a statement signed by representatives of Itsekiri/Ijaws communities in Ikpoba-Okha local Government Council Area of Edo State, they requested the immediate withdrawal of the letters from the Enogie, instructing the inauguration of new executives in the various Itsekiri communities of Ologbo, Ikara, Kolokolo, Ajoki, Ajamogha and Abiala1 and 2 respectively, insisting that the Enogie has no such powers to so order.

“The Enogie should be cautioned to desist from inciting the people against one another for his own selfish interest and should also stop creating crisis in our once peaceful communities”, adding that “these communities predates the establishment of his purported dukedom that came into existence in 1988 as the Itsekiris have lived in these areas for over 400 years,” the statement reads.

They warned the Enogie to desist from playing the ignoble role of a meddlesome interloper and busy-body in the internal affairs of the various Itsekiri/Ijaw communities as he has no right to appoint people to manage the affairs of the kingdom.

While stating that they would not be subsumed or assimilated into the Benin tradition/culture by any means to tactically obliterate their identities and deprive them of their inalienable right to self-determination in modern Nigeria, they cautioned the enogie and his sponsors to desist from using security agencies and the Judiciary in Edo state to harass and intimidate them any further to coerce them into submission.

“It becomes highly ludicrous for somebody from another ethnic nationality to claim native authority over communities he does not relate to by birth or adoption, and even communities he has never been to and speak the native languages”, the statement emphasized.

They therefore called on all the relevant federal and state authorities to call the Enogie to order to forestall a total breakdown of law and order.

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