By Emma Amaize
ASABA—POLICE detectives have apprehended the Chief Priest of Ovre-Eku community, Delta State, for allegedly intruding and burying charmwith live goat, hot drink and yam at the plantation of Presco Plc Nigeria in Orhiomwon Local Government Area, Edo State.
Chief Felix Okotie, spokesperson to the President-General of Ovre-Eku community, Chief Joseph Ukueku, who maintained that the chief priest did not engage in any unlawful activity, told Vanguard: “The chief priest of Ovre Eku was arrested at the Eruotor Shrine in Ovre-Eku, Eku and taken to the office of the Assistant Inspector General of Police, Zone 5, Benin City, Edo State, by Presco police, Tuesday afternoon. He did nothing wrong.”
Differing with the community, Head of Administration, Presco, Mr. Anthony Uwajeh, explained: “The man (chief priest) was arrested where he buried the items inside the planted area and not at the ‘Aruotor’ shrine, which is said to be a tree that is still standing and clearly marked as High Conservation Value, HCV, area.
“Last week Wednesday, a large number of armed youths from Abraka and envious invaded Presco Plantation in Orhiomwon Local Government Area of Edo State, inflicted serious gunshot wounds and machete cuts on the police (some of whom are in very critical condition in the hospital) and our workers; burnt vehicles, destroyed others, and uprooted planted oil palm and rubber.
“On Tuesday, at11.45 am, a man was seen burying something within our plantation in an area already planted. Security men on ground questioned him and asked him to exhume what was buried, which he did. They include live goat, hot drink, yam, charm etc, all of which were taken along with the man to the Police station for further interrogation.
“Note that all shrines and sacred places within the concession (as identified by the communities) are considered HCV areas and clearly marked out and protected. ‘Aruotor’ shrine falls within such categorisation.”