A group, Afenmai Patriotic Development Association (APDA) has called for a peaceful resolution of the boundary crisis between the people of Uzanu and Igiode in Etsako East local government area which led to the revocation of Uzanu Clan and the dethronement of its King, HRH Benjamin Ikani, the Oliola of Uzanu, by the Edo State Government.
It was learnt that the crisis has also led to the arrest and detention of some elders from the community and a threat of warrant of arrest on the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Agba.
Recall that the Edo State Government had last week revoked the clan and dethroned the traditional ruler of Uzanu clan over allegation that he has not complied with directives to ensure peace in the area.
But the Afenmai Patriotic Development Association in a press statement yesterday, signed by the President and General Secretary of the group, Kennedy Izuagbe and Lucky Anyia, respectively, appealed to the government to enable the association wade into the crisis which it said was between “two brotherly, Afenmai Communities”.
The statement noted that there have been several efforts in the past to resolve the over 50 years dispute and that the efforts “were moving steadily to a seamless resolution of the crisis including withdrawal of all court cases before the recent government intervention.
“We however strongly appeal to the Edo State Governor, His Excellency, Mr Godwin Obaseki, to rescind the decision to revoke the clanship of Uzanu and the dethronement of its king. The Association is of the opinion that this dethronement of Uzanu Oliola and clan revocation is not likely to bring about the much needed peace.
“The Association believes that these are two communities that have lived together as one for centuries, therefore a border dispute should not lead to revocation of clanship that had earlier been properly instituted and duly gazetted. We therefore appeal that the Government takes a second look at the revocation of the South East Uneme Clan as it has no direct bearing on the boundary matter”.
The statement said the two communities have produced prominent Nigerians including the current Senator representing Edo North, Francis Alimikhena and Agba.
It, therefore, appealed to the Government to give APDA the opportunity to convene a meeting between Uzanu and Igiode communities to amicably resolve the matter.