BY HUGO ODIOGOR
The culture and historical antecedents of Idumuje Unor Kingdom were on display as His Royal Majesty, Obi Charles Chukwunwike Anyasi, formally took the staff of office from Delta State Government on May 17, 2014.
It was a colourful event in carnival-like atmosphere. The ascendancy of Obi Anyasi 111 whose father occupied the seat for 67 years, making him one of the longest reigning monarchs in the world and in modern history before he passed on, on April 29, 2013 was legitimate.
In fact the long reign of Obi James Ikechukwu Anyasi, meant that men and women from Idumuje Uno who were born since 1949, had not witnessed coronation ceremony of any king in the sleepy town. More significantly, was the fact that the event provided the people the opportunity to re-enact the culture of the people, extol their communal values and re-affirm their belief in the axiom that “east or west, home is the best”.
The interplay of history and culture came in a clement weather of bright sun shine which gave the visitors and indigenes of Idumuje Unor, the salubrious environment to watch and enjoy the zestful cultural dances and masquerade displays.
The Roll call
The thrill and frills were complimented by the presence of government officials led by the Deputy Governor of Delta State, His Excellency, Dr. Amos Agbe Utuama,who was accompanied by members of Delta State Executive Council and key political actors in the area. Also present were royal fathers from Delta North to show solidarity to one of their own. Notable among them were: HRM, Agbogidi Victor Chukwumalieze 1, the Obi of Onicha Ugbo, HRM, Agbogidi Henry Ezeagwuna, the Obi of Issele Uku, HRM Agbogidi Chukwuka Azuka, the Obi of Akwukwu, HRM Dr. Ezeagwu Ezeenwali, the Obi of Umunede.
Others were; HRM, Dr. Ken. Ezegbunem, the Obi of Nsukwa, HRM, Dr. Kikachukwu, the Obi of Ubulu Uno, HRM Sunday Olisewokwu, the Obi of Ogodor, HRM Edward Ofulue, the Obi of Ubulu Uku, and HRM Obi Unokaiwendi,Obi of Ubulubu.
The celebrant, Obi Charles Chukwunwike Anyasi III, was a seasoned columnist with the now rested Sunday Concord, where his genre of witty satire entitled: Concord Laff, was a delight to readers in the 1980s. It was therefore a joyful moment for his family members, friends and well-wishers to see him ascend the royal throne of his fore fathers.
The reformist agenda
The reform minded monarch did not waste time in outlining his vision for his subjects, indicating that the administration of the kingdom would be based on collective action and participation of a broad section of the society. Consequently, the Obi announced that hisadministration shall be committee-based as each key facet of the challenging communal life will be handled and over-sighted by special sub-committees that will be reporting to the Obi-in-Council.
Notable among the committees are the ones on palace welfare security, development of infrastructure, enumeration, education and ICT, spiritual and religious affairs.
The President of Idumuje Patriotic Union of Nigeria (IPUN), Chief Jude Onwochei could not hide his feelings as he told the guests that Idumuje Unor is a classic case of neglect as the town lacks basic amenities, ranging from health care centre, schools to, electricity, good roads to link up with its neighbouring towns like Ugbodu, Idumuje Ugboko, Onicha uku, Onicha Ugbo and Ohordua in Esan East local government area in Edo State which it share border with. His Royal Majesty Obi Charles Chukwunwike Anyasi11, has elected to adopt the Roosevelt concept of development to rescue his neglected kingdom.
His strategy is to mobilise the human resources of the kingdom by creating what he called “Idumuje Kingdom Brain Trust”, to compliment his own ideas and vision of how to attract social and economic development. It is morning yet on creation day, but the joy of having a journalist on the royal throne of Idumuje Kingdom is a rare feat.