Ovie of Udu Kingdom, Owhohu I

The Udu Traditional Council, Udu Local Government Area, Delta State, has reacted to claims by Oghior community that they were tagged strangers by the Udu monarch, HRM Owhorhu I, stressing that there was no time the monarch ever referred to anybody, community or villages as strangers in the kingdom.

In a terse press on behalf of the monarch by the Otota of Udu Kingdom, Chief Sam Esikomunu Odibo, on Friday, the Udu Traditional Council emphasised that the monarch may have been misquoted as a foremost legal luminary of his standing couldn’t have referred to any of his subjects as strangers in Udu Kingdom.

They said: “At no time during the course of the meeting in question, did HRM, Owhorhu I, refer to any communities in Udu as stranger elements in the Kingdom; and Oghior was certainly not so called.

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“Let us, as always, live in peace and harmony as brothers and sisters; people of the unique Kingdom, one language, one people, one local government.”

The Council said it would not have reacted, but that the rumour was gradually being taken as the truth.

The statement read: “The attention of the Udu Traditional Council has been drawn to an avalanche of angry reactions on social media and online publications by aggrieved indigenes of Udu Kingdom, especially Oghior community.

“These reactions are over a statement credited to HRM, E. B. O. Delekpe, Owhorhu I, The Ovie of Udu Kingdom, to the effect that some communities in Udu are stranger elements to the Kingdom.

“The statement, which has understandably generated so much anger across the length and breadth of the Kingdom, was purportedly made by the Ovie at a meeting called to adjudicate on the boundary dispute between Oghior and Ukpiovwin communities.

“His Royal Majesty was alleged to have referred to Oghior as ‘stranger elements’ in Udu.

“Not accustomed to social media warfare or responding to every publication, the Udu Traditional Council had initially taken the story as one of those media farces that would soon run out and thus restrained itself from responding to the apparent misquote.

“However, as the misquote soon travelled like wildfire and put on the toga of truth, it has become most pertinent for the UTC to put the record straight as follows:

“At no time during the course of the meeting in question, did HRM, Owhorhu I, refer to any communities in Udu as stranger elements in the Kingdom; and Oghior was certainly not so called.

“His Royal Majesty, aside from being the custodian and well versed in the culture, values, traditions and customs of Udu people, is first and foremost a very senior legal luminary, well grounded in inter-personal communication, an invaluable resource to lawyers, could not have used such term to refer to his people in Udu.

“It, therefore, beats not only the imagination but becomes a thorough embarrassment that His Royal Majesty could have been alleged to have referred to Oghior community as strangers.

“Consequently, the Udu Traditional Council hereby calls on all sons and daughters of our respected Udu Kingdom to discountenance the tag of ‘stranger elements’ in Udu.

“Such elements do not exist and such a statement could not have been made by our very seasoned lawyer, a highly revered Royal Majesty and Father.

“Let us, as always, live in peace and harmony as brothers and sisters, people of the unique kingdom, one language, one people, one local government.”

Vanguard News Nigeria

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