By Sylvester Idowu in Warri
An Ijaw leader in Delta State, Chief Micheal Johnny has proffered a lasting solution to the lingering boundary dispute between Ogbe-Ijoh and Aladja communities in Warri South West local government and Udu local government areas which has claimed several lives.
Johnny, also Chairman of Egbema Gbaramatu Communities Development Foundation said yesterday that it was becoming worrisome that over the years, the Delta state government never made any genuine efforts to resolve the boundary dispute which had claimed many innocent lives and properties.
“I am calling on Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, being the Chief Security Officer of the state to use part of the state’s security vote to acquire the “disputed land” from both communities, because all panel of enquiries set up by his administration and previous ones on this matter produced no result.
“I know Okowa inherited the Ogbe-Ijoh and Aladja land dispute, let it also be on record that it was Governor Ifeanyi Okowa who permanently resolved the land dispute, this should be his thinking and legacy and not playing politics with the crisis, acquiring the disputed land from both communities is the lasting solution.
“At this point, the Delta state government should immediately commence the process of acquiring the land from both communities after which a state or federal project be executed on the land to serve as a boundary in between the communities.
“And for the interest of peace, the people of Ogbe-Ijoh and Aladja communities should cooporate and allow the state government to acquire the disputed land, such a land that is often taking the blood of innocent souls should be sold out because our lives are more important than any land”, Johnny, also a Chieftain of All Progressive Congress (APC) advised.
Just last Saturday, a renewed clash between Aladja, an Urhobo community in Udu Local Government area and Ogbe-Ijoh, that belongs to Ijaw in Warri South West Local Government area claimed a life and several persons injured with many houses and properties destroyed.