(Video):INTERNAL CRISIS IN EDO COMMUNITY OVER LAND DISPUTE.
BY INNOCENT OKOH.
OCTOBER 21, 2021.
Tension as internal crisis is brewing up in Iduwen-ehigie community by Egba junction, along the Benin-Auchi expressroad, in Uhunwonde Local Government Area of Edo state, as the Odionwere, Pa. John Aghimien has declared two members of the community wanted over alleged unauthorized collection of community levy from developers.
The Odionwere who spoke to newsmen on Thursday in the community, alleged that one Ikponwonsa Omorefe alias IK, and Bright Edebor, collected the some of seventy-five thousand naira from one developer, identified as Mr. Idahosa, over a long bought by him from the community.
This is coming even as the said Ikponwonsa and Bright have denied the allegation, describing it as a blatant lie but accused the Odionwere of disobeying the directive of the Oba of Benin, Oba Ewuarethe second, to open the community shrine known as Ogiedion, for worship. They further accused the Odionwere of diverting issues on ground to formulating lies just to frame them up.
The duo and other sources who spoke to newsmen alleged that the issue on ground is the reselling of landed property already sold by the disbanded community development association, CDA, by the odionwere, the disclosed that the matter is already before the Edo state Private Property Protection committee, accusing the odionwere of indiscrimate selling of land amounting to over a hundred million naira without accounting for it.
Speaking further, Ikponwonsa, disclosed that they no longer recognize him as the odionwere after failing to honour the directive of the Oba. He added that as it is now, the Odionwere no longer have the right to sell any land or collect whatsoever levy. He added that if he claim to be the Odionwere let him present himself before the palace of the Oba and defend himself over the alleged atrocities.
Also speaking Bright Edebor, called on the Oba of Benin to come to their rescue by taking necessary customary action over the issue and restore peace back to the community, he added that the Odionwere is found of harassing them and others who challenge him over abuse of power with the police and the military men. Adding that six elders have since died after challenging him of abuse of power.
He alleged that the Odionwere has sold land belonging to the Oba of Benin and the Okhua deity in the community, which according to him is a sacrilege.