…say ravaging flood forced residents away
By Efemona Ogwara
People of Uzere kingdom in Isoko South council area of Delta state have refuted reports making rounds that shootings between its youths and security operatives caused most residents to run away from the community.
The people who spoke from different parts of the community revealed that it was the recent flood disaster that has forced many to desert their homes.
Recent reports have attributed residents leaving the town to the lingering N20 million oil largesse conflict that saw the council boss, Sir Malik Ikpokpo, suspending the president general of Uzere kingdom, Felix Enwenede, last Thursday.
Isoko Mirror gathered that the flood which has persisted for nearly a month, worsened last week, causing most families to seek shelter at the internally displaced persons (IDPs) camp in nearby, Emede Town.
It was learnt that farmlands, fish farms and other properties worth several millions of naira were destroyed in the water onslaught.
Speaking, a chief of the kingdom, Chief Fidelis Adaka, posited that reports claiming that the community had been sacked due to gun shots fired by combating youths, were fueled by mischief makers, trying to cause division in the kingdom.
Adaka who spoke in his home in Paris, an area in the community, “people had to run to the IDP camp in Emede. I can tell you for the past three weeks, people have been sacked. The drainage was only about 60 percent done last year. Maybe it’s because we didn’t follow it up. If we had appealed to the governor or the commissioner for environment, something would have been done.
“I am lucky because my own place is one of the highest point in the community so, we are not affected by the water.
“But in terms of crisis, it cannot be crisis that drove people away.”
Adaka, who urged the state government to intervene in the situation by completing the drainage construction which commenced last year, assured that if the project is fully executed the problem of flooding become “history”.
Some persons affected by the flood include Prof Ogidi Ekoko, Prof A. Ekoko, Chief (Dr) E. Owhe, Dr S Evroro, Rear Admiral Ekpolo, Chief Dr Ogieh, Barr. E Emiaso; President General, Isoko Development Union, Chief Iduh Amadhe; Isoko Mirror Advisory Board member, Chief Dele Iboma.
Further speaking on the suspension of the community’s PG, Chief Adaka, posited that it was unconstitutional for the local government chairman to suspend him.
He said suspension of community executives was carried out within the kingdom, adding that the development of not checked will lead to more interference by government authorities into traditional affairs.
Others are Sir lrogbo family compound, Isaac Udogri’s mother’s house, Eni Primary School, Uzere.
Wondering what prompted the decision, Adaka pointed out that if not for wisdom on the part of the community’s leadership, when the people of Igbide struck and took some persons captive, destroying properties as well, the council did not see it as provocation enough to suspend their PG.
“If not for the good leadership of Engr. Ewenede and Uzere leaders, when Igbide people came to Uzere land in July, kidnapped 15 persons and destroyed our properties what award did the Council Chairman gave to our President and Uzere Leadership? Secondly did Chairman suspend Igbide President General for leadership failure?
“The council chairman will soon start suspending Kings in Isoko South,” he stated.
He however described reports which tagged some persons in the community “sponsors of the crisis” as having “no iota of truth in them,” emphasizing that Uzere people are peace loving.