Edo Guber: IYC tackles Obaseki over deprivation, underdevelopment of ijaws, make demands



By Nitoni Osain, Yenagoa

Yenagoa, July 1, 2024 (NAN) The Ijaw Youth Council has tackle Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo, over deprivation underdevelopment of Ijaw people, and make demands.

The call was made in a statement signed and issued to newsmen in Yenagoa, on Monday by Amb. Princewill Binebai, Spokesman Ijaw Youth Council (IYC).

According to the IYC, Edo State was formed on August 27, 1991 when Bendel State was split into Edo and Delta States.
The major first languages spoken in the state are Ijaw, Edo, Etsako, Esan and Owan, Akoko Edo and Okpameri language.

The IYC said: “Edo State is home to several ethnicities, among them the Bini, Ijaw, Esan, Afemai and Emai.

“The Ijaw people are not only found in Edo, but they are original foundation ethnic group in Edo like others. The Ijaws have five autonomously independent Kingdoms such as Egbema, Okomu, Olodiama, Forupa and Gbaran.

“These Kingdoms have been politically bulkernized into three local government areas in Edo State as minorities. They are in Ikpoba-Okha, Ovia North-East and Ovia South-West Local Government areas of the state.

“It is so shocking, shameful and appalling that successive Edo State Governors have exhibited high level of ethnic jingoism and have Governed the state as though the Ijaws are not existing while the Ijaws are equal stakeholders in the state.

“The Ijaw people are both culturally, politically, socially and economically viable.

“The demand of the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) is that His Excellency, Godwin Obaseki should be proactive enough by urgently giving staff of office to the five Ijaw Kingdoms in Edo State before the Governorship election,” they said.

The Spokesman said that the Ijaws in Edo are not living in a foreign land, they are living in their ancestral land and no one should try to falsify their history by trying to annex any part of their lands.

The statement reads “Our people have suffered too much political deprivation, suppression, manipulation, oppression, strangulation and alienation in their own land.

“Since the creation of Edo state till date, the level of development in the Ijaw areas have been completely nothing to write home about. The IYC will not allow this injustice to fester forever.

“The continued subjugation of our people and Kingdoms by not giving staff of office to Ijaw kings in Edo State is something that is capable of causing disharmony and chaos.

“We don’t know how we will continue to endure this calculated arrangement geared towards undermining the autonomy of the Ijaws in Edo State.

“You cannot be using our collective wealth to develop and dignify one section. This is totally unacceptable to the Ijaw Youth Council,” it reads.

The IYC called on governor Obaseki, to swiftly partner with relevant agencies for the commencement of the Udo-Ofunama road project to connect the rural Ijaw areas to the urban and see to the realization of the Gelegele-gbene Seaport.

According to him, These projects are very dear and key to our people, Edo, Niger Delta and Nigeria at large. If completed the projects will add so much economic value to the polity. (NAN)


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