Tony Osauzo, Benin
The age-long traditional practice was at the weekend invoked by the ancient Benin Kingdom of Edo State to cleanse the land and appease the gods for any infractions that might be responsible for sacrilegious acts and recent upsurge of cases of violent killings arising from cultism, armed robbery, kidnapping.
Consequently, hundreds of traditional priests and priestesses of different deities, native doctors of various classifications, Ewuaise palace society and different ancient traditional worshippers, including Olokun and Ovia priestesses, gathered and unanimously pronounced curses on those committing sacrilege against the land and throne of the kingdom.
According to the traditional worshippers, who besieged the ancient Urhokpota ground in red attires with different traditional instruments of war, the generational curses were also targeted at traditional violators, sponsors of cultism, kidnappings and other heinous crimes in the kingdom.
Shortly after the slaughtering of animals and offering of sacrificial materials to ancestors, the various groups took turns to pray and lay curses on those violating the laws of the land.
The groups thereafter had a procession to strategic places in city, including Sakponba Road, Kings Square, Murtala Mohammed Way, Igbesamwan Street, Akpakpava Road and ended at Emotan Shrine on Oba Market Road.
The exercise was presided by the Ewaise Group headed by Chief Eguezigbon, and Chief Ohen-Egie of Ogbeson.