IDUMUJE-UGBOKO AND THE STRANGLEHOLD OF A ROYAL PRETENDER
Idumuje-Ugboko, our community is not just another community in Anioma district of Delta State. It is a community with a rich tapestry of royal glory and splendor that predates the colonial era. But lately, internecine jealousy, the green-eyed monster, has reared its ugly head there gnawing at the foundation of our great kingdom. Are the problems upsetting the applecart of peace and harmony in the community solvable or avoidable? Nay, the issues, in my estimation are to a large extent not intractable. Most of the issues are within the domain of Prince Nonso Nwoko and his camp to resolve or at least initiate the process to settle. They must loosen their vice grip for our community to move ahead.
The starting point is to unambiguously define the kernel of the crisis. The fulcrum of the crisis, in my deduction is three folds and they are currently not being addressed in any meaningful way by the claimant of the throne an
d the elders in his faction.
The first area to trace the problem is for men of conscience in Idumuje-Ugboko to call Prince Nonso to order through cessation of his opposition of the Stars University project which he has been sabotaging using sundry underhand tactics. Before the last Obi, HRM Albert Nwoko III joined his ancestors, he was in receipt of Prince Ned Nwoko’s application for allocation of appropriate plots of land for two key developmental projects he had earmarked for his hometown, namely the International Golf Course and the Stars University.
Obi Albert III was filled with joy that the kingdom was finally on the cusp of witnessing quantum leap in development with the attendant creation of thousands of job opportunities for our people especially the younger generations. But alas, Prince Nonso created a channel for crisis and set the clock back when he embarked on the reversal of the land approval given by his father before his death. By that surprising anti-progress move he put himself on a collision course with the kingdom’s most influential and patriotic son, Prince Ned. It was and still remains an avoidable crisis that was contrived by Prince Nonso and few people who were evidently jealous of the rising profile of the former member of House of Representatives.
The wish of any rational traditional
ruler is that successful indigenes of his kingdom should not abandon their ancestral root but help to liberate the people from poverty and neglect by bringing developmental projects there. It is quite strange that an aspiring royal father out of sheer jealousy and vindictiveness would allow himself to be an accessory to the underdevelopment and de-marketing of the kingdom through needless squabbles over a matter that is within his powers to resolve. No sane indigene of Idumuje-Ugboko would doubt Prince Ned’s love and good intention for our dear community and Anioma as a whole.
Prince Nonso is not the only antagonist of Prince Ned in the Nwoko Royal family. Few others are likewise finding it difficult to come to terms with the celebrated philanthropist’s steadily spiraling profile both nationally and internationally. Otherwise, how can a thing of celebration like building a university in one’s own community become a matter for spewing hate and bad blood?
The fact that the pace-setting Stars University being built by Prince Ned in our kingdom is not an ordinary tertiary institution but the first of its kind in Black Africa is further fueling the jealousy of some of our shameless kinsmen. Similarly, the 16-hole International Golf Course which he is building in our community is a source of envy for many, being the first of its kind in the African West Coast.
And before embarking on
the twin gigantic projects, the towering international attorney cum philanthropist had literary lightened up Idumuje-Ugboko by building a touristic multi-billion Naira worth of country home in our proud ancient town which blends the best of African, Western, Arabic and Asian architectures.
Did Prince Ned choose to locate these iconic structures in our rural town with profit as the overriding factor? No. Of course, he would have chosen Abuja, Asaba or even South Africa as the location of the premier sports university and the golf course if personal gains were his driving forces. He can afford ten thousand hectares of choice land in any of those urban and more investment friendly destinations. But he shunned the urge for profit and decided to sacrifice for our people with the firm belief that virtue is its own reward as far as his support of our native community is concerned.
It was therefore the height of ingratitude and insults for Prince Nonso and his supporters to accuse Prince Ned of land grabbing for duly securing the allocation of land for his people-oriented projects. Or could he have built the university and the golf course in the air? Mbanu.
Prince Nonso and his group of renegades should stop chasing shadows and address the core issues which are the murder and other criminal charges dangling on their necks as well as why they have chosen to be cogs on the wheel of progress by undermining the development of Idumuje-Ugboko including the smooth takeoff of Stars University.
The question that the enemies of progress have been shying away from is: Who are the first line beneficiaries of the new university and the golf course projects in terms of multiple salutary effects – employment, accelerated socio-economic development, urbanization, quality education opportunities, engraving of the name of Idumuje-Ugboko on the world map etc? Of course our people.
Another poser for Prince Nonso is why he has opted to embark on subtle blackmail of the Delta State Government, the security agencies and other constituted authorities as he runs from his own ugly spectre.
Again, since our tradition till today says that for any prince to be crowned as king he must be patrilineal and matrilineal descendant of Idumuje-Ugboko why should Prince Nonso whose mother is a non-indigene of our community usurp the throne in fragrant disobedience of the tradition and order of succession? Until such a time when that conditionality is amended based on majority
consent, the culture and tradition of our people must be strictly adhered to.congratulations
The rightful thing is for the most senior prince who is a full-blooded patrilineal and matrilineal descendant to ascend the throne upon the demise of the last Obi. This seems to be the major reason for the adroit tendencies of Prince Nonso who by strict adherence to the tradition of Idumuje Ugboko is not qualified to be king.
The murder charges which he is facing represent another kettle of fish which the courts and the law enforcement agencies are competently handling.
I cannot end this write-up without referring to the sheer delusion of a few misguided enemies of progress who recently arrogated to themselves the prerogative of speaking for the second and third generation of the great Nwoko family. In their unhinged position, which can be likened to the antics of wild bulls in a Chinese shop, they proceeded to elevate falsehood to an art. That is certainly not the path of civility and royalty. It is sheer mischief for the authors to claim that they chose to defend the indefensible and dance naked in the market square ‘in the best interest’ of the family and town at large.
The inelegant tone of their verbose write-up exposed the authors and the pretender to the throne as charlatans. The issue at stake in Idumuje-Ugboko is not about “royal transfer of kingship”. It is about the development and wellbeing of the royal family and the town at large. It is about keeping faith with the patriarchal and matriarchal pre-conditions for ascension to the throne based on the extant guidelines as handed down by revered system of monarchy that we inherited from our predecessors.
It is most disappointing that all through the haystack of convoluted hate disgorged by the authors they failed abysmally to explain what their grouse was against one of the biggest developmental projects ever sponsored by an individual in Delta State. Of course, all discerning minds are aware that the bitterness of Prince Nonso and his acolytes stems from nothing other than local envy and malice.
Our advice to the Delta State Government, the Police and other security agencies is to ignore the wicked blackmail by Prince Nonso and his band of misguided persons who are obviously driven by sinister motives. Their resort to blackmail is a sign of their realization that their duplicitous plots have been exposed.
Regarding the puzzles thrown up by the hatchet writers about 2015, if 2015 represents a negative epoch in Idumuje-Ugboko, whose era best defines it, Prince Nonso’s or Prince Ned’s? The Stars University concept including the international golf course project predates 2015. Why is it that there was tranquility all along until when Prince Nonso began to lay claim to the throne and to undo all the good works of Obi Albert III?
Was Prince Ned who turns 60 this year born in 2015? Even the blind knows that Prince Ned has for several decades been an active scion of the royal family and a huge purveyor of developmental initiatives in our community and its environs.
Prince Nonso is clearly the malignant cancer that typifies the orgy of crises in Idumuje-Ugboko since 2015 when he began to fraudulently rear his head in the palace.
Prince Ned should remain focused and positive because every cloud has a silver lining. People like him are seen once in many generations. Rather than repay him with hate and denial, we, the Idumuje-Ugboko people should be proud and happy of producing such an illustrious son who loves his people to a hilt. Conducive environment should be provided for the smooth and early take off of Stars University and the International Golf Course with the provision of adequate and secure land as the basic factor.
For the royal crown claimant, Prince Nonso, Prince Ned is not responsible for the precarious situation in which he has found himself. The pretender has no choice than to retrace his step for the good of the community.
Elder Samuel Chianugo Okafor