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Ikare Akoko/Iyometa rift: Okoja community urges Ondo govt to deal with perpetrators of mayhem


AKURE (Sundiata Post) – The Okoja community in Ikare Akoko , Ondo State, has come out with the  full story behind the recent rift between the  Okoja Quarters in Ikare Akoko and Iyometa in Ondo State in a statement made available to Sundiata Post.

Reports have it that during the first week of January this year, Iyometa youths invaded Okoja Quarters in Ikare, to stop Okoja youths from holding their annual festival. The Iyometa youths, according to reports, also invaded  Okela, Odo and Ilepa Quarters of the town destroying properties – houses and shops and in the process some lives were lost.

The Okoja community, in its statement, called on Ondo State Government to bring the perpetrators of this crime to book.

According to the  press statement, signed by the leaders of the community in question, “The genealogy of the recent face-off is traceable to the government order that the people of Iyometa should and must not break bounds in coronating her new chiefs in Okoja Land. This was followed by a written document ( Government White Paper) that addressed and stated that His
Royal highness, Owa-Ale is the King of Iyometa.

“It is traditionally known to people of Ikare that Iyometa comprises of Okorun, Okegbe and Iku which could be subdivided into different communities and households. This implies that Okoja has never been part of Iyometa from time
immemorial. The knowledge of this strengthened and restored peace and serenity to the land of Okoja before the 2nd of January, 2023, the eve of the community youth carnival.

“Upon inquiring, it was gathered that the youths of Iyometa had earlier addressed the Commissioner of Police, Ondo State in a written document to stop the people of Okoja from having her yearly Carnival. To further clarify this, we noticed that it was nothing but an economical truth. The youths of Okoja, after getting to know this then planned to have a mini-merriment to mark this year’s carnival prior to the disruption of this activity by the external youths.

“We gathered that the people of Iyometa claimed an unmerited ownership of Okoja Land and vowed that without permission from their king, nothing worthwhile could be celebrated from Okoja because they were denied “Common” privilege of coronating their new chiefs in Okoja. This was
what led to the invasion of the heartbeat of our dear Land on 3rd of January, 2023. The invasion was a result of stopping our youths from merrying in their fathers land. It should be noted that youth carnival has been a new normal in Ikare and her environs.

“The youths of Okoja didn’t cross bounds in the process of felicitating until they were invaded by Iyometa youths. This invasion led to the burning of houses, loss of lives and valuable properties (millions in naira) of our dear people.

“We also wish to make it known that this invasion is built upon “impunity”. They also went to different locations (Okela, Odo and Ilepa) in Ikare with dangerous weapons to cause mayhem and havoc.

“We plead that the government should take decisive action against whatever and whoever disrupts the peaceful state of our people. We also enjoin the government of Ondo State to ensure that the alleged youths who were found killing and destroying the properties of our people are all brought to face the wrath of the law of the land to avert reprisal attack. We plead that the government finds a lasting solution to this unprovoked attacks.”

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