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DELTA: Crisis Brew as Aladja, Ogbe-Ijoh Trade Accusations Of Planned Attack

Senator Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa

"They have concluded plans to destroy the buildings on Ogbe-Ijoh GRA in their usual manner as well as unnecessary and senseless firing of guns at their convenient time, thereby causing panic on the Aladja Ogbe-Ijoh road as these pose threats to the lives of innocent road users." Ijaw Youth Council, IYC, Amb. Victor Akemetubo.

"We are calling on the security agencies to call the Ogbe-Ijoh to order because we will not sit down and allow them take our lives and properties without defending ourselves." Aladja community.

A serious security crisis is currently brewing between Aladja and Ogbe-Ijoh Communities in Udu and Warri South-West Local Government Areas of Delta State as the two Communities trade accusations of alleged planned attacks against one another.

This is coming as the people of Ogbe-Ijoh have accused the Udu Council Chairman, Hon. Jite Brown of an alleged plan to attack them in their Community.

The Ogbe-Ijoh people spoke in an open letter addressed to Delta State Governor, Arthur Ifeanyi Okowa. The letter was signed by the Ijaw Youth Council, IYC, Amb. Victor Akemetubo.

The Ogbe-Ijoh people said the Aladja people dug open, the only access road leading to Ogbe-Ijoh, so as to prevent the military and other passerby access into Ogbe-Ijoh whenever there is any attack from Aladja.

While noting that that Aladja Community have a toll gate at the extreme end which leads to Ogbe-Ijoh, they stressed that they have concluded plans to destroy the buildings on Ogbe-Ijoh GRA in their usual manner as well as unnecessary and senseless firing of guns at their convenient time, thereby causing panic on the Aladja Ogbe-Ijoh road as these pose threats to the lives of innocent road users.

The Ogbe-Ijoh people also urged the Delta State Governor-elect, Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori to immediately take steps at settling the land dispute between the two communities as soon as he assumes office.

They equally called on Governor Ifeanyi Okowa to note and correct the "deviance" of Jite Brown Chairman of Udu Local Government Council (his adopted political son) with a view to stop his planned last attack as he promised.

According to the people of Ogbe-Ijoh, "The Urhobo nation should be aware and hold Jite Brown responsible for any break down of law and order in these two communities and that the Ogbe-Ijoh community does not have any fight with the entire Urhobo nation. It is Jite Brown who is using the councils' money meant to develop Udu Local Government, to buy arms and ammunition for Aladja people in its planned attack of Ogbe-Ijoh, over time.

"For the past one week, the Aladja people have been coming to Ogbe-Ijoh end to shoot indiscriminately at Ogbe-Ijoh at their will, which the DSS, the Nigeria army, the police and other security agencies are aware of."

However, Aladja Community has debunked the allegations levelled against it by their Ogbe-Ijoh neighbours.

In a statement signed by a former President of Aladja Community Council, Hon. Denis Kabedje Etabuko, he said; "It's a lie from the pit of hell. It is the Ogbe-Ijoh people who would be planning to attack Aladja Community now."

Hon. Etabuko stressed, "This has always been their pattern. They accuse Aladja of either of one attack or the other or of planning to attack when they are fully ready to attack. This they do to build a defense in case they are accused of an unwarranted attack on Aladja. 

Hon. Etabuko said it is laughable for Ogbe-Ijoh Community to say that Aladja Community have blocked the access road leading to their land with a view to deprive the military entry when there is crisis.

"This is laughable because it is very clear that the road has been in use before, during and after the cessation of hostilities."

Hon  Etabuko noted that Governor Arthur Ifeanyi Okowa approved the road for reconstruction pointing out that, it is ongoing presently. 

"So, how come a road under construction is now being said to be blocked by the Aladja People when the security patrol teams of the Operation Delta Hawks stationed at Ogbe-Ijoh pass through other side roads in the community to Ogbe-Ijoh on a daily basis? 

"Ogbe-Ijoh people are known for being blatant liars and this lie has just exposed them as a people who are experts of lie as a merchandise.

"It is on record that the Ogbe-Ijoh people have a perchant for avoiding the resolution of the matter. The security agencies can attest to this fact. Even the Senior Special Adviser to the Governor on Peace and Conflict Resolution, Hon. Chief Henry Uzoh can attest to this fact. Aladja has always complied with any directives from the State Government and the security agencies who mediated on the issue but Ogbe-Ijoh has always proved to be the stumbling block to peace. 

"Let me use a scenario to explain this. There was a meeting convened by the Chairmen of Udu and Warri South West Local Government Councils; Hon. Chief Jite Brown and Hon. Taiye Duke Tuoyo. At the end of the meeting the Commanding Officer of the 3 Battalion, Nigerian Army, Major Lima asked representatives of both Communities to join him as they would be going to the Barracks in Effurun to sign a Peace Accord. The Ogbe-Ijoh representatives refused to join him in his armoured car through Aladja but decided to pass through the river. Yet, it was in the Council Secretariat in Ogbe-Ijoh that the meeting was held. The Aladja people came there without any security escorts believing that because they are standing for peace nothing untorward would happen to them. Yet, it is this same road the Ogbe-Ijoh are claiming the Aladja people blocked now. Or is there any other access road to Ogbe-Ijoh that we do not know of?

"The IYC through its Chairman, Victor Akemotubo accused the Udu Council boss, Hon. Chief Jite Brown of sponsoring the Aladja people to fight Ogbe-Ijoh. This is another laughable point the egocentric Akemotubo brought up. In his blind search for words to accuse the innocent man with, he said he (Brown) failed during the last election in his bid to go to the Delta State House of Assembly as the Udu representative. Yes, he failed. It was not because he did do well but because his own Aladja people were against him because of his principled stand to ensure that the boundaries demarcation was totally done in his time since the amiable Governor, Sen. Dr. Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa had delegated him and his counterpart of Warri South West Local Government Council to finish the job. 

"The Aladja People felt their own son joined hands with their enemy to forcefully take their land from them and paid him back by not voting en mass for him in the last election. This is the true picture of what transpired. 

"The Aladja People believe that their son, Jite Brown, has the capacity to assist the community to prevent Ogbe-Ijoh from grabbing their lands through his closeness to the Governor but deliberately refused to assist. This issue was a raging battle that affected the chances of Jite in the last election. Therefore, for Ogbe-Ijoh to turn around to accuse Jite Brown of sponsoring Aladja is the height of madness. I believe those in Aladja who fought against Jite because of this Ogbe-Ijoh issue would be gnashing their teeth in regret now.

"The veiled attempt by Akemotubo to pitch the Governor-elect, Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori against the Aladja people has failed. We believe the Rt. Hon. Oborevwori has the records and where he needs clarification, there are people he would call to hear from and it would be made clear that Ogbe-Ijoh has been the ones truncating the peace process.

"The IYC also attempted to make the other Urhobos feel Aladja is the aggressor party. One thing the IYC should know is that the other Urhobos know that the Ijaws of Ogbe-Ijoh, especially, are a very troublesome set of people. That the other Ijaws are wary of them. That the attempt to make Urhobos see the Aladja people look like the trouble makers is a veiled way to tell the other Urhobos that once there is a breakout of fighting again the other Urhobos are not safe in the Ijaw domains. The Urhobo Progress Union would address. 

"Before this publication, we have got information of the meetings they have been holding to plan the possible ways to attack Aladja. And we are aware that Chief Frank Omare; Chief Favour Zuokumor; Chief Bello Baotu; Hon. Friday Deighan have asked Chief Monday Keme and many others have donated huge sums of money for them to buy more arms and ammunition in preparedness the attack Aladja in what they have tagged; the Last Push against Aladja, where they boasted that even the Federal Government will feel the heat of what they will do to Aladja. 

"Aladja is not unaware of all these evil plans but we will not attack as we have not attacked at any time since the outbreak of hostilities. We have always been on the defensive. And the Army OCs who have been posted to the area since 2016 when the fighting started, can attest to this fact. 

"The lies that Aladja has been coming to shoot for over a week now at their territory should be investigated because, it shows that they are now training some fighters in Ogbe-Ijoh. And they want to use this as an alibi in the event that the security agencies hear any firing of guns. Victor Akemotubo has just proven that he is one of the major expert in the merchandise of the act of lying. 

"But we are calling on the security agencies to call the Ogbe-Ijoh to order because we will not sit down and allow them take our lives and properties without defending ourselves."

Efforts to speak with the Udu Council Chairman, Hon. Jite Brown was unsuccessful as his Chief Press Secretary, Comrade Henry Ubus in a WhatsApp message told our Correspondent that his boss needed to approve his refutal over the allegations raised against him by the IYC in Ogbe-Ijoh Community. 

For over nine hours now, our Correspondent has been waiting for his response.

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