By Osaigbovo Iguobaro
Some indigenes of Edo State have appealed to the Benin monarch, His Royal Majesty, Oba Ewuare II, to set up an independent panel of inquiry into the lingering communal crisis across the seven Local Government Areas under his watch.
Recall that the traditional ruler, is the prescribed authority of the native laws and Customs in Benin kingdom particularly Villages and Communities in Oredo, Egor, Orhionmwon, Uhumwode, Ikpoba-Okha, Ovia North East, Ovia South West and Ovia North East Local Government Areas of the State.
Marxist Kola Edokpayi, Speaker of Talakawa Parliament, a Benin-based pressure group made the submission at a joint Press briefing to condemn activities of ‘the devil’s advocates’ who hog power in some Communities and Villages, thereby making life miserable for inhabitants.
He condemned the unprovoked violation of the rights of the people of Obagie Community in Ovia North East Local Government Area and Ikpe Village and Iguo-Oshodi N’ Egbudin Villages both in Ikpoba-Okha Local Government Area of the State by certain individuals masquerading as close aides to the Royal father.
The Speaker of the Parliament assured that intervention of Oba Ewuare II could the save the rural dwellers from the the jaws of the oppressed and avert breakdown of laws and order in the areas.
Edokpayi specifically accused the Secretary to the Benin Traditional Council (BTC), Mr. Frank Irabor of attempting to upturn the verdicts that had been given by Oba Erediauwa of blessed memory including Iguo-Oshodi N’ Egbudin Village leadership on order of gerontocracy by fiat, without recourse to its consequences.
According to him, Some Communities in Edo State is fast drifting into odium. I challenge the BTC Secretary to respond to this allegations instead of shadow boxing and using diversionary tactics.
“We are sick and tired. I want the activities of Mr. Irabor to be investigated. I want to use this opportunity to appeal to set up an independent panel of inquiry into the issues raised in the interest of good conscience. The people cannot be mute when there is fire on the mountain”, Edokpayi stressed.
Earlier in a remark, the youth Leader (Okaeghele) of Iguo-Oshodi N’ Egbudin, Mr. Sunday Osahon gave a brief history of how the crisis started and called on the Benin Monarch to ensure justice is served to the aggrieved residents of the area.
One of the elders of Ikpe Village who is famous for palm wine production, Mr. John Ilebor, appealed to the monarch break barriers that distort free flow of information on Communal issues in order to avert miscarriage of justice as it concerns leadership crisis.
In his part, Mr. Sunday Oyemwense, an elder in Oba Community, flayed indiscriminate arrest of locals by a prominent indigene in the locality who has assumed the position of a utopia by trumping up a non-existence charges on his perceived enemies.
But, the Secretary to the Benin Traditional Council, Mr. Frank Irabor who reacted through the spokesman of Benin solidarity Forum, Mr. Curtis Ugbo, denied any wrong doing in the allegations.