Isekiri Deprivation and Marginalization: A Case Study of Tertiary Institutions in Delta State
Isekiri ethnic group has been greatly marginalized in Delta state of Nigeria. Every student of History is abreast with the fact that the Isekiri ethnic group produced the first graduate in Africa south of the Sahara; in the person of Dom Domingos(Atuwase I) the Olu of Warri (Joseph Kenny 2003). Isekiri king (Antonio Domingos) the son of Dom Domingos wrote the oldest surviving letter by a Nigeria, the letter was dated 20th Nov. 1653(P.C. Lloyd 1957; Talbot 1927; Ryder 1969 etc).
Warri and Aboh were the only two kingdoms in the Niger Delta (Ikime 1969; Alagoa 1989; Talbot 1927 etc). With this great History, it will be amazing to note that Isekiri ethnic nationality with its fame as the oldest kingdom in the Niger Delta (1472)(Egharevba, 1948) a Bini man; Ikime (1969)(an Isoko Professor of History) , older than Aboh(1650)(Elisabeth Isichei, an Igbo woman), has little or no place in the tertiary institution of Delta state.
The Maritime University to be cited at Okerenghigho(Okerenkoko by Ijaw vandals) is purely in Isekiri .
Okerenghigho ( Okerenkoko by the Ijaw) where the Maritime University is situated belongs to Omadino Isekiri. Suit No. W/30/1962: CHIEF E. E. SILLO & 2 ORS (for themselves and on behalf of Omadino people) vs. JAMES ULUBA & 2 ORS (for themselves and on behalf of Okerenghigho people is a clear testimony to this fact. With this declaration by the highest court in the land, the Nigerian Senate still went ahead , attempting to rob the Omadinos of their land in favour of the their Ijaw tenants, as against the court pronouncement. If not for the court , the hope of the common man, where on earth do member of the house of senate want the Isekiri man to go to for justice?
Consider the Petroleum University (Effurun). Is this not a wrong nomenclature? Because Effurun is declared by the Supreme Court of Nigeria in suit no S.C. 98/1993, as tenants to Gbolokposo (an Isekiri land under the overlordship of the Olu of Warri). According to the judgment, Ugbomro is part of Ugbolokposo land. Every Isekiri land makes up the Warri Kingdom. Therefore, it is wrong to refer to the site of the University as Effurun or Ugbomro or any other Urhobo name, other than Gbolokposo or Warri. Ugbomro, Okwatata, Okufoghore… having boundary with Kerekere stream in present Okpe LGA, including Osubi Airstrip etc are parts of the land owned historically and won legally by Gbolokposo. We are magnanimous to allow their pocket ‘king’ remain in the land, as a show of love and concern towards our fellow human beings, neighbours and tenants. If not no king was there historically. It will be proper to obey the laws of the land in order to live in peace and harmony. We should also render total obedience to the Nigerian Judiciary (Court). This is because it is where every wise and matured man goes to, to seek redress.
Lastly, for the now, we look at Delta State Polytechnic, ‘Otefe’. This is another anomaly by the Ibori Regime. When he ( Ibori) was governor, he conscripted, for reasons best known to him, the land of Efurokpe(Isekiri) people and used it to build a state owned Polytechnic and named it after an Urhobo village. Ginuwa I served UmaleOkun at Efurokpe(1472AD , Moore 1936, Omoneukanrin ,1948). But Oghara people came into existence between 1800 and 1850, when they were work hands for Olomu and later Nana of Isekiri (Miller Intelligence Report, 1923?)
Claims by Isekiri Nationality
1. Maritime University should be named as Okerenghigho , the rightful and legal name, rather than Okerenkoko, an Ijaw imperialistic name. Compensation should be paid to the Omadinor people. Isekiri sould take their proper 2/3 as stipulated by all the judgments quoted between Omadinor and the Ijaws – that is 1/3 to Olu in Council, 1/3 to Omadinor and 1/3 to Ijaw of (Gbaramatu –Ijaw tenants).
2. The University at Ugbomro-Effurun, should reflect the proper name of Gbolokposo.
3. The Otefe Polytechnic should be named as Efurokpe.
4. Isekiri should have all compensation as per employment, admission as the real catchment area of the Higher Institutions.
1. The president, Aso Rock, Federal Republic of Nigeria.
2. The Executive Governor, Delta State of Nigeria.
3. His Imperial majesty Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ooni of Ife
4. Alaafin of Oyo His Majesty Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi II
5. Olugbo Oba Obateru Akinrutan
6. The Royal Palace – Mahin Kingdom
7. Lenuwa of Ode-Omi His Royal Majesty Oba Adenuga Okuniyi, the Lenuwa of Ode -Omi
8. Attah of Igala His Majesty Idakwo Ameh Oboni-
9. Shehu of Bornu His Majesty Alhaji Abba Kyari
10. The Palace of the Aku Uka of Wukari
11. Olu of Warri His Majesty Ogiame Ikewoli I
12. Chief Abdul-Ganiyu Adams – Leader of OPC – Oodua People’s Congress
13. The Official Palace of the King of Ga.
14. All leaders of Lucumi temples in Cuba, Haiti, Brazil etc.
Augustine Oritseweyinmi Oghanrandukun Olomu (St.Ifa)
And Taiye Emmanuel Amatesiro (Elite)