Ijaw group demands inclusion of Ogulagha Kingdom in EPZ project

An Ijaw group, Sokebolou/Yokiri Peoples Congress, weekend, called on President Goodluck Jonathan to prevail on Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta State, not to exclude Ogulagha Kingdom from the scheme of things in the Export Processing Zone (EPZ) project or risk imminent catastrophe in the area.

The group, in a statement by its Chairman, Bob Towei, said: “The people of Sokebolou/Yokri communities in Ogulagha Kingdom, Burutu Local Government Area, will not fold their hands and watch the state government take away from them what rightly belongs to them.”

The group named Adedegbene, Agbogoroma-gbene, Ologoseimor-ere communities, among others, as “rightful owners” of the land where the EPZ project is sited, saying that the truce facilitated by the governor between the Itsekiris and the Gbaramatu Kingdom of Ijaw only was a non-issue and will not be respected by Sokebolou/Yokiri communities of Ogulagha Kingdom, also of Ijaw, whom they said were the true owners of the EPZ project site, as they were not invited by the governor to take part in the truce.

Calling on the President to prevail on Governor Udughan to reconvene another meeting with all stakeholders including Ogulagha Kingdom before the proposed groundbreaking, the group said: “Nobody should blame us for whatever action we carry out if our people of Ogulagha are ignored.

“We want to categorically state that the directive President Goodluck Jonathan gave to Dr. Uduaghan at Asaba to harmonize all stakeholders of the EPZ project was not followed hence only Itsekeri and the Gbaramatu-Ijaw were invited.”

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