Crisis is brewing in nine communities comprising the Egbema Ijaw clan of Edo and Delta states, which are hosti to oil production activities of multinational oil giant, Chevron Nigeria Limited.
The Egbema Ijaw clan has allegedly urged government agencies, communities and traditional institutions and the public against dealing with the ex-militant commander, Mr Henry Binidodougha, as the traditional ruler of the area.
Representatives of the nine major communities making up the Egbema clan allegedly said in a joint statement yesterday that Binidodougha was not installed by the traditional institution as king of the clan.
They stressed that the ex-militant cannot be king since he is not from any of the existing ruling families in the land.
The prominent individuals, who signed the statement on behalf of the Egbema Traditional Council of Chiefs include Chief Johnbul Adaun (Opuama/Polobubo), Chief David M. Bubor (Ofunama Community), Chief Inspector Sele (Ajakurama Community), Chief W. B. Igbiriki (Ogbudugbudu Community) and Chief Joseph Fedisegha, (Abere Community.)
Others are Chief Goddey Omokenitu (Abadigbene/Bolou Jamagie 1,) Chief Ebi Eyenmi, (Ogbinbiri Community), Chief Simeon Igbedikuro, (Jamagie 2, and Chief J. P. Owilly (Gbeoba/Ugbolukanga community.)
They said that the title of Ojuaga 1, which he allegedly gave to himself was an aberration, unknown to the traditional institution.
“The Egbema kingdom is an ancient kingdom, which bestrides the present-day Edo and Delta states of Nigeria with nine traditional Communities namely Opuama/Polobubo, Ofunama, Bolou-Jamagie, Abadegbene/Tu-Jamagie,Ogbinbiri, Ogbudugbudu, Gbeoba/Gbolukanga, Ajakurama and Abere.
“The title of Ojuaga 1 is alien and repugnant to the customs and traditions of the ancient kingdom of Egbema. For the records, Henry Binidodougha will never be enthroned as a traditional ruler of Egbema kingdom because he is not from any of the ruling houses in Egbema kingdom gazette with reference no. B. S. L. N. 148 of 1979 upon the approval given by the then military administrator of the defunct Bendel State of Nigeria.
“Members of the general public, particularly governmental agencies and neighboring kingdoms are, therefore, urged to refrain from having any dealings with the said Henry Binidodougha and his followers in relation to the ancient Egbema traditional stool,” the statement read in part.