STREAMS OF THOUGHTS:
ALADJA CONCERNED CITIZENS by
SEN (.Dr.) Ifeanyi Okowa,
The Executive Governor,
ALADJA/OGBE-IJOH COMMUNAL CRISIS.
The above named crisis has been with us now for over two decades. It has defied resolution due,very largely,to the underneath reasons:
*Most often, formulation of panel’s terms of references are sequentially faulty and deliberately skewed. They make the identification and definition of especially the underlying remote causes of most crisis impossible.
*The untenable assumption by most panels that anything purportedly in dispute could be resolved by sharing the thing between the disputants.
*Arising from the above is the fact that findings of panels are most often times half-truths and artificial. Recommendations based on such findings are short on justice and therefore dangerous.
*Government’s inability to muster enough political will to take firms positions based on these recommendations, even though deficient on justice.
Before touching on the specific crisis between Aladja/Ogbe-Ijoh communities it ia expedient to recall the following facts:
1) Since the year 1926,the Privy Council had acknowledged and stated unambiguously that in the whole of Southern Nigeria land ownership is by families and is transmitted down the line from one generation to another. Any claims to the contrary ia imposition, fraudulent and a lie.
2) It is erroneous and untrue as it is often chorused that government own all land. Rather, government is only holding lands in trust for the people.
3) A reading and consideration of section (8) subsection 2(b) of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution explicitly acknowledges and recognized that the precise delineation and delimitation of Local Government boundaries is work in progress. The States criteria for precise delimitation are as underneath:
a) The common interest of the community in such area;
b) Traditional association of the community; and
c) Administrative convenience
It is clear from the above that the precise boundary between Local Governments could only be ascertained if and only when especially the traditional boundaries of the bounding communities have been defined,determi
ned and demarcated.In reality this exercise only become necessary when disputes arise between boundary communities as is the case now between Aladja and Ogbe-Ijoh communities.
It is therefore premature,mischief making and a lie to base ownership of land on tentative Local Government maps as they exist now prior to the demarcation of same. It should be noted that in the precise delineation and delimitation of Local Government boundaries administrative convenience ranks least.
WHAT ARE THE CLAIMS BY ALADJA AND OGBE-IJOH COMMUNITIES TO THE PROFESSIR EKOKO’S PANEL.
to be continued…