Egbema Youth Council in Egbema Kingdom, Warri North Local Government Area of Delta state, on Wednesday, kicked against the recognition of the Olu of Warri, Ogiame Atuwaste lll by the State Government as the sole traditional ruler in the local government.
The Ijaw youths reaction is coming against the backdrop the State Government publication of the names of Royal Fathers in the reconstituted Delta State Traditional Rulers Council, in which the name of the Pere (King) of Egbema Kingdom was not included.
According to a statement signed on behalf of Egbema Youth Council by the Ibebenimowei of Egbema kingdom, Chief Pastor Tilikiwei, it stated that, the attention of the Youth Council of Egbema Kingdom in Warri North Local Government Area of Delta State, has been drawn to the wrong interpretation given to the Delta State Government publication of the names of Royal Fathers in the reconstituted Delta State Traditional Rulers Council, in which the name of the Pere of Egbema Kingdom was not included.
In the report released and widely circulated by Chief Ariyo on social media platforms, the Itsekiri group misinterpreted the exclusion of the name of the Egbema Monarch to mean that Ogiame Atuwatse III is allegedly the sole traditional ruler in Warri North Council Area. We strongly protest this gross misinterpretation of Government’s publication for the following reasons:
He said: “First, the demise of our former king, HRM G.O.E. Tiemo (JP, AmbP), the Pere of Egbema Kingdom which was announced on December 3, 2020, necessitated the inauguration of a Regency Council headed by High Chief Johnbull Adaun, JP, to steer the affairs of the kingdom pending the installation of a new traditional ruler (Pere) for the kingdom.
“We are still in the process of selecting a traditional ruler to be presented to the State Government for the presentation of Staff of Office. Egbema is an autonomous kingdom, and has never been and will never be under the control of another traditional ruler.
“We believe the exclusion of the Pere of Egbema Kingdom on the list of members of the Delta State Council of Traditional Rulers as reconstituted by Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, does not mean that the Ogiame Atuwatse III is the sole traditional ruler in Warri North, as erroneously claimed by Chief Ariyo and his Itsekiri group.
“Secondly, prior to the demise of the former Pere, he was a member of the State Council of Traditional Rulers, and we believe that when we conclude the process of crowning another Pere, the new Pere of Egbema Kingdom shall be included in the State Council of Traditional Rulers.
“We, therefore, declare the wrong message published in the social media on this issue as an affront on the status and dignity of the ancient kingdom of Egbema people in Warri North LGA.
“We also see the publication as another attempt by a section of Itsekiri nation to fan the embers of disunity and crisis in Warri North where the Ijaw and Itsekiri people have been living side by side in peace, over the years.
“Consequently, we request our peace loving Governor of Delta State, His Excellency Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa to prevail on Chief Ariyo and his Itsekiri group to immediately retract the said publication of wrong interpretation of a well-constituted Council of Traditional Rulers by the State Government.” the statement added.
By Ebi Perekeme
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