The people of Oghiora community in the Okporua Ruling House of Udu have condemned the declaration by a monarch that they were strangers in Udu and so not entitled to any valid claim to legitimate ownership of landed property in the area.
In a briefing, spokesman of Oghior Elite Forum, Olorogun Wisdom Ghaghara, reacting to a report from a Friday, April 30 meeting of traditional rulers, where the declaration was made, said Oghior had resolved to take their destiny in their hands.
He said the community had decided to defend its territorial integrity, noting that the panel of inquiry earlier set up to look into the land dispute between Oghior and Ukpiovwin communities had given a final report on the matter which is at variance with the position reached at said meeting.
His words: “All historical accounts confirmed Oghior to have predated Ukpiovwin community in settling in Udu. So classification as strangers cannot be accepted by the people.”
Ghaghara declared that if Oghior were pushed to the wall, the community will have no option than to declare its own kingdom outside the Udu Kingdom.
Referring to a letter earlier addressed to the Governor of Delta State dated December 28, 2020, the spokesman faulted the Local Government Chairman, Chief Jite Brown, over the delay in implementing the final report of the panel set up to look into the dispute between Oghior and Ukpiovwin.
‘’We have laboured hard to curtail the anger of the people. This provocative statement is a direct affront on the sensibilities of the Oghior community. Every community has a history of migration and whoever thinks he fell from heaven without any migration background in Udu cannot be Udu in the first place.
“We appeal to Governor Okowa to step into this matter, because we will not be responsible for any breach of the peace if the provocation continues.
“This is a direct invitation for war but we have chosen the path of peace because it is certain the attempt to rewrite the history of Udu cannot stand. We are all Udu and if a monarch believes Oghior is not Udu, then we shall have no option but to declare a separate Kingdom from Udu,’’ he added.
He disclosed that in another letter written by Counsel to Oghior Community, Barr Martin Awheyevu Mukoro dated April 14, 2021, the community had protested further involvement of a monarch as customary arbitrator in the matter between Oghior and their neighbour, Ukpiovwin because of his unilateral moves to jettison the report of the panel and impose his personal opinion on the matter as fully backed by some politicians.