Edo community rejects govt’s choice of new monarch

Natives of the Illushi/Ozigono community of Esan South East Local government area of Edo State have kicked against the appointment of Fidelis Okowele as their traditional ruler.

The indigenes alleged that Okowele hails from a neighbouring community, Oria, adding that he has no ancestral link or connection with them.

A letter sent to Governor Godwin Obaseki, jointly signed by the community’s president, a human rights lawyer, Victor Giwa, and some other council of elders members demanded the immediate withdrawal of the appointment.

The letter sighted by our correspondent on Tuesday read, “Our attention has been drawn to the news making the round that your office has recognised one Fidelis Okowele as the Onojie of Illushi/Ozigono community, of Esan South East Local government area of Edo State.

“Firstly, the said Okowele Fidelis is not an indigene of Illushi/Ozigono community and has no ancestral link or connection to the people of Illushi/Ozigono.

“The said Okowele Fidelis is an indigene of Oria Community which neighbours and shares boundaries with our Illushi community.

“For clarity, we the Illushi/Ozigono indigenes  hereby reject  any form of recognition and appointment of Fidelis Okowele as Onojie, (King) or Chief of Illushi/Ozigono community or in any name in whatever manner it is described.”

They added that the community would resist attempts to decorate Okowele with the “full force of our collective will.”

“We further state that any attempt to recognise or appoint, install, or decorate Fidelis Okowele in any manner described above will be resisted with the full force of our collective will.

“It is further important that all action be suspended to avoid acrimony between the two communities – Oria and Illushi  and the fragile peace in the communities,” they added.

Calls made to the state Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Monday Osaigbovo, were not answered.

He was also yet to respond to a message sent to him on the matter as of the time of filling this report.

Credit Gist New Today News in Newspaper Nigeria Headlines

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