They dig, they die

IJERO EKITI

They  dig , they die

For many years Ijero  in Ekiti State has been invaded by illegal miners who are  foreigners and natives while the town is on the bridge to cave in, taiwoabiodun.com investigates

see video here

Unperturbed as he exhibited unusual confidence while strolling about the huge excavation site for the proverbial goldmine. The young man, a Kano indigene simply identified as Ahmed  was ably accompanied by his able lieutenant and  labourer, Abubakar from Bauchi, who obviously was wearing a frowned  face. He took his spade and headed towards the dug tunnel.

The duo hinted this reporter that they came on a voyage in search of precious stones which are readily available in commercial quantity  in Ijero.

After waiting  for over one  hour for Abubakar to appear at the other end the long wait at the lonely and unsightly enclave appears to this reporter an endless one.

A trip to Ijero Ekiti in search of gold made these two friends left their homes to search for greener pastures

One of the residents revealed that the town city Centre is besieged  daily by  indigenes of different nationalities, name it: Togolese , Lebanese , Sudanese, Liberian, Cotonou , Senegalese, as well as Europeans who stormed the ancient town for similar reason.

However, the ecological threat caused by illegal mining activities in IJERO and its environs cannot be over emphasized even as the spiral effect on the water sourced majorly from the wells is believed to be injurious to the health of thousands of hapless IJERO residents.

ABUBAKAR -AN ILLEGAL MINER GOING UNDERGROUND IN SEARCH OF PRECIOUS STONES                                                             PHOTO:TAIWO ABIODUN

 

Unless urgent steps are taken by concerned authorities, the entire IJERO community, despite the huge deposits of rich mineral resources, may soon face the imminence of socio-  economic degradation resulting in health hazards, no thanks to mining operations giving outsiders false impression that all is well with them.

There is no doubt that the ancient town is blessed  with  mineral deposits.

According  to Mr. M. Yewande “Ijero is blessed with solid mineral resources that is next to Jos. What we have here can sustain this town if well tapped .We have chiefly among them  : limestone, gold, bauxite, copper, turmaline, cushy, feldspar ,cataract, foundry  sand, costa mica, tantalite, ruby, rubilite, sodonite, prodonite, tin, columbite, diamond , bauxite, iron and kaolin.We equally have gold which is yet untapped”.

How illegal  miners work

There are a lot of illegal miners in the land , according to a source who begged for anonymity. One of the illegal miners explained  how they get the precious stones  , “when  we sight a certain stone we would dig  that place of over 200 feet deep and this leads us again to  sight another stone ( which acts as a pointer  to where we are going) then we continue digging until we  again come across  some specific   stones which leads you ahead  that you are getting there for  they are like a compass  locating where these  precious stones are”.

Aside this , the illegal miner continued “there is a chemical  used to blast these stones , we  would fix it with wire and move away from the place , at least some feet away and connect it with the battery  then blast it  and within 20 minutes to  one hour its all over, then some stones would be exposed while water would be oozing  from the area and the next thing to do is to use pumping machine to drain the water and continue blasting the rock sighted”.

How we get the land

Another illegal miner said “We buy some portion  of land for 400 naira per day and will be checking whether we would get these precious stones  , if we get them it’s our luck and if we don’t get them we have lost our 400 Naira. However we have a group and the group is divided into seven while  each group would divide themselves and part ways and  whoever gets luck to get a place where mineral  deposits are  would call  others and then the digging starts “, the  man explained

Death on the prowl

These mining sites had recorded a lot of deaths .”In a year over 10 official deaths were reported not to talk of  those  secretly buried. Many  died when   the excavated sand  caves  – in. Many at times  illegal miners  would fall into the deep trenches dug  or    heaped sand would  fall  on many and buried them alive “, said an illegal miner.

A young man said ” when they die we would use long rope to bring the corpses out from the dug holes. A source said ” at least an average of 20 people die in this process. Last year,  I know about six people who died in the process.They tied a rope and went into the hole and tied  it on the body of the boy and brought it out.However , while they announced the few natives that died there  but we record high number of deaths  from the Hausas and foreigners  whose history are not known”. A man said his cousin  died in one of the  dug holes last year, he said ” we were at home when his friends  came to inform us that my cousin had died  while scooping  the earth.We cried and  cried and cried for he was yet to get married.

“Another incidence happened when a boy after he had finished (in the dug well ) a rope  used to bring him out cut in the process and he fell back  into the pit , he broke his neck and his back that was all.He was eventually tied again and brought out dead!.

“But when a foreigner dies they would say it is the wish of Allah and no cries while some would be buried in the ground”.

 

Native connivance

No one can be trusted as some unscrupulous natives connive with outsiders  to loot the town.The financial gains realized from these resources  is either pocketed or go into private pocket or taken away by these foreigners .

Most of the high class people one looks up to as rich men  are thieves who assist these foreigners and put them through on how  and where to get these products. In the end these so called big men would collect money and get away.

Yewande is concerned  about them , he said ” there is no development here.There is no impact that these precious stones are found here because they are carted away with the connivance of big men in our community. Many have  become sick because of the blasts of these stones. The illegal blasting has created a lot of problems here.Many developed  hearing problems , mental disturbance, fear of lead  poisoning has led to deaths of many. Madam Mary Adefebi said she had no peace and her sleep was always disrupted when she was admitted at the Specialist Hospital where blasting was done behind the hospital .” In the night I would be hearing blasts and my eardrum was always affected.A woman collapsed and died one day as a result of the blast because she was hypertensive”.

Another complainant whose house is close to the fields said ”many houses are shaking for they had dredged most of these places.One day houses would be sinking .I pray the State government should assist us in this.

Yewande said what happened in Zamfara ( as people were drinking poisoned water) will soon happen here.

The royal father who is not impressed about the environment and with frowned look said ” what we have here is pure looting , people come from Sudan, Moronvia, Togo, Cotonou  , Senegal, Europe .

Solution

Group Captain Ropo Aiyegbusi ( retired) one of the notable indigenes of the state decried the situation and said the fault comes from leaders of the community who did not cooperate with the vigilante group ,he asked ” How many have they arrested? .It is connivance , some of our people do plan with these unscrupulous elements to steal our resources. We have many foreigners  who are staying here illegally and because of our precious stones stay behind here stealing and looting ..

“How many of these people have the license to use? Do they pay to the local government what they are supposed to pay ? What of the state and the federal government ? Don’t we have law that covers mining? . I know it is not yet time for God to intervene ,People are dying silently”, he added.

An Honourable  who begs for anonymity also lamented on how some notable and influential people connive with the natives and loot their precious stones.

 

How Olowo of Owo was elected

   Tension was   high. Peace was fragile. Eyes   widely opened.  Ears kept  to the ground .  It was like a vigil. Nobody   slept. It   was   a world of gloomy and uncertainty. Some who would have loved to stay neutral or aloof  could not for it was not this time  . It is like watching the World  Cup, no, it was like Barrack   Obama’s   first election   when the First Black man contested for the America   Presidency, the election was watched by the whole world with rapt attention and pumping hearts. Yes , it was  like when President  Barrack Obama and his men were watching how America SEAL Team Six  bombarded  Osama Bin Laden’s house in Abbottabad , Pakistan on May 2, 2011.Tension filled the air!.Back home, it was like the June 12 presidential election.

 

Olowo of Owo -elect addressing the Chiefs and crowd

    The Olowo of Owo’s  Palace was full. Some came to watch  how the election would go while some were there to start the joyful mood when announced while others were ready to ….. if there is any magomago or wuruwuru.

       Yet,   it is like sitting on a keg of gun powder. Time  bomb. Many had their blood pressure shot up. All kinds of   rumors  and gossips  went  round the town. Text messages were flying like kite .

     All hands were on deck.      Hmmnn , Owo  a town honoured and respected in Yoruba land . Owo  whose   name is in the Bible , known as the   land of Honour . A town  blessed  with erudite scholars, political juggernauts , successful business men and business women .A town that has its natives in Diaspora .

 Owo is  one of the most sensitive towns in terms of politics and chieftaincy titles. Owo indigenes   hate  cheating.  Don’t toy with Owo when it comes to politics and chieftaincy titles . No wonder Socrates said ”Wonder is the beginning of Wisdom’’.Owo will perform ‘’wonder’’ if anything contrary to their wishes happens.

 Olowo-elect waving to his supporters

Who will become the next Olowo of Owo ?. Who will become the King and be addressed as  Kabiyesi oooo?. Who will be greeted thus : Okun Aragbarigbi , akata ila  bori Ogho male, ogede so too too?(the mighty expansive ocean , the great white umbrella –like shelter of Owo. The prolific banana tree that bears so much fruits-Courtesy Prof . Rowland Abiodun).

 Who will occupy the highly revered  throne  in Yoruba land? .Who will fit into the late Olowo of Owo  HIM Oba David Folagbade’s  shoe? . From Owo, Lagos, United Kingdom , Canada , France and  America  different  news flew round.

OWO IN SEARCH OF A KING

    Immediately the late  Olowo of  Owo Oba David Victor  Folagbade Olagbegi III joined his ancestors  on the 16th of April  there were speculations of who is qualified and  not qualified to be the King .When Pastor Enoch  Adeboye , the Spiritual Leader of The Redeem Christian Church of God (RCCG) came to the town to commiserate with the family and kinsmen , he prayed that God should provide another King  that would bring peace and development to the ancient town. He also prayed that God will give the town a King that would be after His heart.

PRAYERS, PRAYERS

 Christians prayed while the Moslems were not left out. Infact according to rumour the Chiefs  and Ifa Diviners went as far as to another town  to consult oracles like the Oracle in Delphi. Then a shock that almost threw everybody off balance landed as  a man who claimed to have come from an area released  a video that went viral . He came out  with  shocking messages  that  some traditional title holders would die before the town can enjoy peace. Yes, the man goofed as Owo became peaceful without the death of those he mentioned. I wish the man is  fished out  to tell us where he got the message!.

Who will Ifa Oracle  pick that would not cause problem? .Who will God chose among these Princes? Oro nla!.

Many contestants came out , pulling their weights. We need to thank Ojomo Oluda and the Omolowos for their wisdom and boldness to do the job as the town did not go into crisis.

Arguments flowed freely as questions were asked: How can someone who lives far away from home come back home to  contest  for the throne? .Did these contestants have   investment that will  benefit   Owo?. Who should be the next ruling house to contest?. We don’t want old people to be King. Haa! You should allow another ruling House to contest.  We don’t want this and that ruling house again, all these arguments and counter arguments were raised and  debated upon by many but having forgotten that the choice lies in Omolowos who are Kingmakers headed by Oba Kofoworola Oladoyinbo the Ojomo Oluda of Ijebu Owo.

      The envious  seat became  hot cake and big debate of all as some members of the three  ruling houses  viz; Olateru- Olagbegi, Ajike and  Ogunoye came up. Arguments heated up , some said they are all from same Elewuokun ruling House and anybody among them could vie for it.    There were about 18 contestants   vying  for  one position. These contestants  flexed muscles as nobody wanted to step down,  those begged to step down did not oblige. Haaa!, Kilode? -Only one position. Social media was  awash with stories and references  .

    While all these contestants   were greeted in the public as Oba l’ola (Future king ) . Then  the political  song of 1960s  Bi o r’owo mi oo r’inu mi Demo ni mo wa …. came to mind . Some of these contestants were supported publicly but not supported privately. Speculations went round that some of the contestants  promised cars,promised  to  bring business to Owo, and to turn the ancient town to Eldorado, and many more if elected .

ELECTION DAY

Contacts were made as  everybody was battle -ready . The town was guarded  by  armed- to- the teeth Mobile Policemen in order   to forestall break down of   law and order. Yes , the governor has to do this  because the ancient town has  records of  violence in politics  and  chieftaincy matters .Unconfirmed rumour has it that  some of the town’s boys too were ready to strike in case the people’s wish was not accepted .Filling stations were shut down as no one knows what will be the outcome  of the election.  Only few went to the market and they closed early. Mark you, Owo does not tolerate cheating , no matter how simple it is.

 

D-DAY

Day was Friday. Time ticked. The day seemed to be too  slow  and  before you knew it  the appointed time came : 3pm on the dot for the voting .

Eyes were blood shot. Some had their blood pressure high .And the questions on everybody’s mouth is  ”Who will support who?’’

Votes were cast , Prince Suyi Olagbegi scored one vote , he came second  while some scored zero but at least they were present to mark register and added to the number of the people who came   to witness the heroic occasion .Then came the result and  announcement , Prince Gbadegesin Ajibade Ogunoye scored 14 out of 15 votes. There was public cries of joy, shouts of hallelujah rent the air. The result was signed by those that mattered while Kabiyesi Ojomo Oluda Kofoworola signed .

Like a heavily pregnant woman who had just delivered in the  labour room . Tension died down. .Jubilation filled everywhere . The townsmen jubilated . Everywhere went frenzy .Beer parlous gave free drinks. Many declared free drinks. It was the first time Owo spoke in one voice, said Honurable Murtala Ahmed.

 Mr.Matthew Obajuluwa said ”this is the first time Owo will  elect their king without any crisis and we  are happy’’, Obajuluwa said on phone, he added ” the Oba -elect Ajibade is loved by the old and the young .This is a new beginning in Owo,Imagine , there is no trouble of any kind as everything went peacefully”.

 

 Vox Populi , Vox Dei

Phones rang everywhere and the voice heard  or the message was ”Ajibade has won! Ajibade has won!!Ajibade has won!!!God has taken control”. This was from Nigeria , then from the United Kingdom, Canada, Russia, France .There was celebration all over the world . Lobo Agaun far away in Missouri celebrated the victory, he said ” that is what we want , the young and ebullient Prince has become the King.The man has charisma, loved by all and is very accommodating and humble .No arguments and no story ”, he said joyfully .The good news spread like wildfire and the following story went like this ;

”Ajike was the first to  embrace Ajibade then Leke while  others followed suit. According to information gathered all the contestants had been made to sign a treaty that whoever won the election should be accepted by all and there should not be fight over this”, Jide Tububo said.

THE LAST PROSTRATION

 The chiefs asked the Oba- elect to prostrate for the last time  and greet them all. He obeyed as he prostrated and greeted Kabiyesi  Ojomo Oluda   Ojomo , the Omolowos and  other chiefs.

The new Oba -elect  who wore an immaculate white agbada  with a white cap to match  addressed the crowd  as the shout of Olowo  Baba O! rent the air. He   entered an open roof Jeep and   started waving ,  and thanking his supporters and   the kinsmen for their support.

Investigation revealed that some sacrifices and rituals had commenced since then.

”Immediately they start the  other sacrifices the marketers  will  leave Ogwata  and go back to  the King’s Market which had been shut since the demise of the Olowo Olateru Olagbegi III”, a source dislosed.

 

TALE  OF THREE LAWYERS

Olowo throne is significant because it has become a tale of three lawyers .A lawyer succeeded  a lawyer  and a lawyer  will  give staff of office  .The late Olowo of Owo was a Lawyer while the Oba -elect is also a lawyer and Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu the Ondo State governor who will give the royal staff of office to the new -elect Oba is also a lawyer.What a coincidence!.

The late Olateru -Olagbegi III assumed his reign  in his 50s while Ajibade assumes in his 50s too.

The late Olateru -Olagbegi III was as gentle as a dove ditto Ajibade who is simple and humble too

The two became  the third (Olagbegi -Olagbegi III and Ogunoye III). The two royal fathers served the government too.In Missouri , America the rhythm continues

Bade de ade

A o baa dee,

Bade de ade Oba,

Haa , e wo bi t’omode t’agba ti nwariri fun Bade ,

Bade ti di Oba

Olaoye- Osinkolu Vs Melrose: Legal battle continues tomorrow

Olaoye-Osinkolu

Tomorrow, Tuesday  July 2, 2019 the Ogun State High  Court will be sitting  as the   legal battle between a writer/journalist,  Mrs.  Dupe Olaoye -Osinkolu   and  a global brand book publishing company , Melrose Books and Publishing Limited continue . The case  was adjourned on the 9th of  April when the Court did not sit.

The   case started in  the year 2012 . In an Original Summons filed on her behalf by a Lagos State -based legal firm , Oluyinka Olujimi & Associates , Mrs. Olaoye- Osinkolu  had informed an Ota , Ogun State High Court  that the said company has since the year 2012 held on to her intellectual work , in flagrant breach of a contract signed with her.

She told the court that the publishing company published  in a leading national newspaper asking people with educational children stories to submit them for consideration and eventual publication.

The claimant forwarded her  own contribution of which the considered very good and satisfied their standard and merit. The company, Melrose   later invited Olaoye -Osinkolu  to sign the contract , and among the  terms are that she must not make the story available to any other publishing company  while it made some financial pledges , including  if it failed to publish the work.

Seven years after the company , Melrose Books and Publishing Limited  neither published her work  nor compensated her despite her  demand for her materials  be returned.Now  she  fears  that they must have printed the work in another foreign country under a fictitious name or title.

Mrs. Olaoye -Osinkolu is seeking the following reliefs ;

1. A declaration that the defendant’s failure or neglect and /or refusal to either publish or return the manuscript of the Claimant and /or pay compensation to the claimant is wrongful and constitute a breach of agreement between both parties

2. A sum of N25million (Twenty five million naira) only as damages against the defendant for the loss suffered by the Claimant on the account of not publishing /returning/compensating/the Claimant as contained in the agreement .

3.A sum of N20million as compensation for the loss of another contract suffered by the Claimant on the account of the agreement binding the defendant to the Claimant.

4.Interest at the rate of 10percent per annum from the date of judgement until judgement is satisfied as provided in the rules of Court .However , rather than affirm or deny the claim of the journalist,the company has told the  court  that it lacks jurisdiction to entertain  the matter.

In a preliminary objection  filed  on its behalf  by a law firm , Enitan Associates , the company  is seeking refuge in a legal technicality that the suit was  brought as an Originating Summons and not a Writ of Summons.

Originating Summons are processes in which Courts are asked to interprete  statutes or agreements, while  writs are for contentious matters.

In an interview with taiwoabiodun.com , Olaoye-Osinkolu vowed to see the matter to a conclusive end . She was shocked that   the company would  seek refuge in technicalities rather than either admit or deny her claims of being unjustly the enjoyment of her intellectual property.

She said  ”This is real cheating and it is unfortunate we allow this type of fraudulent activities to go on in this country. Now how will others be encouraged or how will they trust these publication companies? .Just imagine, this is the same company that , on receiving our court summons pleaded  for out of Court settlement , and renewed pledges to publish the work .They even hurriedly sent me a hurriedly designed purported book cover in which they misspelt my name .I, in contact with some other writers whose works they also fraudulently obtained and refused to publish are waiting for Melrose Books  and Publishing. Yet, their contact binds us from making the works available to other publishers. We are waiting for them in Court”.

The work  has been with the Melrose Books and Publishing Limited  since 2012.

Help me , I need a wife-MAPA

Taiwo Abiodun and MAPA

…….I have spent 41 years abroad

…….No wife, no kid

……. I need a wife

…….. I am a citizen

For over 41 years Benjamin Bodunde Akinrinbola [ aka MAPA] has been incommunicado  as nobody heard from him again especially from his country home, Owo, Ondo State. Until last week when Taiwo Abiodun ran into him at African  Palace Restaurant owned by Mr.Kofo Osun at St. Louis, Missouri,(America.)MAPA spent a few minutes to chat with this reporter.

It is not funny. it is real.  He meant it. He is serious. He needs it .  He needs a woman now in his life .He wants a kid . He wants to raise a family .  He has wasted  years  struggling  to survive . It is  not too late for him  for God’s time is the best, the saying goes. Forget his age , age has nothing to do with destiny.  But MAPA, as he is popularly called  is not a prodigal son, he did not  waste his father’s resources  but struggled with the storm of life.For him life has not been funny at all.

Dressed in his winter coat, he looked  at  this reporter and could not believe his eyes , he quickly  ‘abandoned’ his friends  and screamed  ‘’Mr.  Journalist, Taiwo ,Bobo T, T Bobo, Babalawo of the Nation!’’,  he continued calling this reporter on top of his voice to the surprise of all who came to the Restaurant. He was overjoyed , full of hope and bubbling . It was as if he had won a jackpot   but when he  started narrating his story  his face changed, his voice which  was  raised before became low. His voice cracked and tears almost dropped from his eyes, he  said ‘’,  I have no wife and I have  no child , I need a wife, please find me a wife’’, he said.

Still in the euphoria  of joy, he said ‘’  it is nice seeing you after many years . I have lost in touch of you and many people. I have faced hurdles  and that is storm of life   but I thank God for my life , that is all I can say.  For me  life has not been rosy neither  has it  been fair  but I believe when there is life there is hope’’, he said, as he took everything in a stoic way.

Reminded that he left home over 40years, he responded with total humility   ‘’ Yes it  is up to that , my brother the journey had  been rough.’’, he said and  started his story;

‘’You know that I traveled out  of Nigeria and later  had a scholarship from the Ondo State government during the  late Pa Michael Adekunle  Ajasin regime [1979] and I went to Russia to study. I spent   nine years in Russia . From there  I came to America.  I am  now spending 32years in America. I don’t have a wife or a child. Please I need a wife, I mean a responsible one . I am an American Citizen now   please I am looking for a wife, I don’t drink alcohol or smoke’’, he told this reporter. He asked after many people he knew at home, and abroad , he was overjoyed but one thing he hope to do is to get marry now and settle down with a responsible woman.

As  he took  a picture with this reporter while picking up his food he came to purchase from the  African Palace Restaurant. As he was  about to  enter his car , the snow  flakes started dropping, yet he clutched his pack of food by his side , opened the door  , waved again to this reporter and drove off.

Many who know the man whose nickname is  MAPA at home said he is a very nice , gentle and  easy going man. Investigation revealed that  he had  left Nigeria in  the late 70s. He had a scholarship and went to Russia to study .However to find his feet was difficult for  him , Back home  many had the erroneous  thought he may have joined the ‘’Saints’’ as they didn’t hear from him for more than two decades while some thought he may have spiritual problem. But whatever the case may be  , here is the popular MAPA, he is alive and kicking, “He is not dead” which many thought to believe.

One thing you can not take away from the man called MAPA is happiness, joy , hope  and faith. While others in similar situation will keep quiet,be unfriendly, temperamental  and  lose hope but not for MAPA.

Up to you ladies and  single mothers looking for a husband . MAPA needs a woman to raise a family with   before he grows old.

 

 

Remembering ARAMATU of Ipele

https://youtu.be/xYv7-Cdk5xA

 

     Remembering   ARAMATU  of   Ipele

        …She should  be honoured, and I am going to her graveside to worship her says IYALAJE FAMA

    Aramatu was a very powerful woman in Ipele community, Owo, Ondo State.    She was said to be appearing everywhere one and a half years after her death.  When her body was exhumed she was still fresh. Her severed head was returned…

              The whole town was in  confusion  as people ran              helter skelter.   The old and  the young could not sleep with two eyes closed again. Those who could not bear it any longer fled the town both the natives and non natives. Farmers abandoned their  farms and hide their cutlasses and hoes. Early risers had no choice than to hold on till  day break. Night crawlers  became a thing of the past.Those going to  night market resorted to  selling at home. Going to the brook alone became  difficult . The old and the young could not sleep again. Only powerful hunters were bold  to go hunting. The small ancient town was destabilized.Fear gripped everybody.

This is not a fairy tale or tales by the moonlight. It was real.

Oh my God, the ancient town was going empty in a  town where  there was a King!.

Impossible. Kai!, Eewo!, A tii gbo?. Its unheard of that people were leaving in droves. Who else would remain?.

Who will save the situation?. Then the  wise, Chiefs and powerful  elders put their heads together and met the community head , the Monarch, Oba Ogene . A meeting was held on what to do and the best solution was to go in ”Native” way!.

       It all happened in a small town of Ipele, in Owo , Ondo state around 1974 .The news spread fast like wildfire, no sooner  the town became a Mecca of sorts as everybody thronged there to have a glimpse and confirm  the rumor .

               DEAD WOMAN ROSE FROM GRAVE

           The news spread that a woman called Aramatu who had been buried for about one and a half years was  being  sighted in broad day light and at  night  walking, talking and terrorizing the residents. While the mere mention of the name , ”Aramatu”  sent shivers into one’s spine. You dare not  mention  her name ,it is sacred , it is attached to evil , everybody with his or her own stories ; those who saw her   and those who did not.

The dead has risen?. No way, it is abnormal,it is  unheard of and a taboo .Only Jesus Christ died and  rose from the grave!.  Again the  news of the bodiless head whose body was severed and  the  head  was speaking and singing .  Are these real? . It was a not a  rumour, no any iota of doubt in it . It happened.It was real.

According to sources , those who went on  hunting usually saw her in the bush and  she would asked how they were faring  while she would ask nursing  mothers whose children cry  in the  dead of the night to breastfeed their babies!.

                 

              Pa Daboiku

Those in the farm would be saluted by her saying “well done” .

            First to sight her were  the hunters who came to report of seeing  the strange dead  woman. According to our source,  some young  men who  sighted her at the mosque while  coming from a night party said they saw  a woman with a gaslight  but  could not see  her legs , they claimed later that the woman went after them and   beat their chest , the result?- When   they got  home  they started vomiting blood and later died.

              Another source said Aramatu  used to go to  Omolege and Elegbeka markets in the neighboring villages  to sell her provision and she would  sell to  unsuspecting buyers  who did not know she had died.This she did for a very  long time until when  an Ebira man went to her stall to buy cigarette but met her praying at a mosque. The story continued that while the Ebira man called  her that he wanted to buy cigarette   but  since she did not want to break her prayer  so  she did not answer him  but continued her prayer this made the man got annoyed ,  hissed and left. But the man was not lucky  according to the story, Aramatu ran after the man and slapped her back for hissing on her. When the man got home and narrated what happened not knowing she had died, but after being told that  the woman she narrated her story had died , he started vomiting blood and died.

                 In addition, unconfirmed sources said Aramatu  would wake up early in the morning to assist the drivers calling  passengers into their vehicles

According to Pa   Gabriel  Kolawole  Daboiku who is now 87 years of age, a native of  Ipele and a retired headmaster  ” It was during the time of  Ogene head of the of  Ipele  community that it happened .Yes, Aramatun was from Okewoye here in Ipele and at that time my father was a hunter and also a member of Olupele Inner Council. The news spread like wildfire that a dead woman  who had been buried for over one and a half years used to come out at night and the hunters vowed to find solution to it.

Pa Daboiku said ” Aramatu was living in her husband’s house then at Okewoye.The head of Ipele who was the Oba Ogene could not go out  as the Oba claimed  that the said woman, Aramatu used to throw stones on his roofs.

”A meeting was held  and the hunters vowed to find its root,with charms and my father was a hunter and he and his colleagues followed Ogene who was then the head of Ipele in 1974.

About the woman, one Segun said Aramatu was a prominent woman who  used to pass  through Okobola to her farm along Old Owo road, where her farm was.

 

            FRESH BODY EXHUMED

            According to Pa Kolawole “All hunters were commanded to come out and  her   grave was dug up  while her  body  was removed”. The old man said  he saw the woman’s corpse which was still fresh. He said ”they exhumed the body. I saw it . I saw it .It was exactly how she was placed in the coffin that they met her , and  they had buried her over one and a half years yet   she didn’t change  and the body  did not decay.

”The  plaited hair on her head was clean. I learnt she asked her hair be plaited when she was sick before she died”

          According to Ajo’s version , ”the town’s  powerful men went to Egbe in Kwara to prepare some powerful charms to  neutralize  her power and overpower her . Immediately  the Hausa man who was the first person  to be contracted the job  to dig the grave hit  the ground with his digger  his  torso  was swollen   like the size of a  balloon  .Then they brought out the Oro  [Deity] of  the land while  hunters  were charged to be on guard , all  in the  broad day light while  curfew was imposed  and  nobody should go out. Some   hunters sighted   two  pigeons flying towards old Owo road  forced  back the birds  , believing it could be the woman”, narrated Ajo.

                   BODY REBURIED

                According to reports    rituals and sacrifices were offered and the body  was exhumed  and was found fresh .The white cloth used to wrap her was as white as snow .  Not only that some said  in the grave where  the dead woman was buried she had constructed  a big extra room there thus having a room and living  room, and she pushed her coffin somewhere in the grave.

              On what happened to the body after exhuming it , Pa Kolawole said ”  when they hewed the body into pieces  blood was  oozing   out from it and it  was the Ugbamas [ set of age grade] who took the corpse away into the bush called Igbo Omo Oba where witches are buried  and  the dismembered body was buried there”.

                        MANY DEATHS RECORDED

            When the news spread many came from far and near to have a glimpse at the strange woman’s body and confirm the story. According to Pa Daboiku many had accident on their way to view  the corpse , Pa Daboiku  said ” I remember many died in auto crash on their way to here to  confirm the story by viewing   the corpse . Some White men who were coming to have a look at the corpse had accident on the road but the Black men coming behind the White men’s car  had accident and they all perished,I think about four or so died.  I  am not saying the white men  died but the Black men”, the old man clarified.

Confirming what Pa Daboiku  said, Johnson said  ” many who rode on  motorcycles going there to have a look at the head  had accident and died at Obukele , in Owo, some died in  motor accidents”, Olu  too corroborated what they said , he added ” Many died on their way to Ipele to watch the scene. It was an unforgettable incidence for  so many people  perished on their way to and from the scene died.

IYALAJE FAMA   says Aramatu should be honoured

THE SINGING HEAD

While the body was exhumed and cut into pieces , investigation report said that some men took parts of the severed body away possibly to use them for other things . Later rumour went round that  Aramatu’s severed head was bought by a white man who took the head away  secretly . According to rumour the  White man who bought the head could not keep it any longer as he said the head used to sing at night and the buyer had no choice than to  return it back to the man that sold it to him.

An old man who begged for anonymity said ”the head of Aramatu was bought by a white man and only God knows why and what he wanted to use it for , anyway, he was said to have returned the head saying the head was singing every night, disturbing him .Thus another news broke in.That was how the secret of the whereabouts of the head leaked out.

But Pa Daboiku confirmed  it and said “I learnt that those who bought the severed head returned it ,” but I did not see it o”.

ARAMATU’S HOUSE

On whether the house  where she was buried is still there , Pa Daboiku said , ”the house where the body was exhumed is still there till now. The house where she was buried at first is still there till now  .It was the Ugbamas who took away the corpse  for reburial after rituals and sacrifices were offered and since then we have never experienced such  thing  in this town again.The story is real” , the old man said , shaking his head.

Asked whether it was due to uncivilized life that made her corpse be exhumed and her body dismembered but he replied ”It is not because we were not civilized but  when a witch is disturbing the society the the body has to be taken away ”.

          Investigation revealed that the Igbo Omoba that  was once a thick forest  is no longer a forest  .The house where she was once buried was her husband’s house and is still there today and people are living there without any fear or being troubled .

          According to some sources, Aramotu was said to be of a good woman when alive and nobody ever knew she was such a powerful woman  again nobody has ever accused her of any wrong doing.

                         SHE SHOULD BE WORSHIPED

           Yeyelodu Awo and FAMA, an Onisese Orisa  who  lives in California, America  is a Nigerian-American. She is from Emure -Uli near Owo, Ondo  State.  According to her,  Aramatu was an heroine of our time but we failed to recognize, honour and appreciate her.

FAMA who was shocked to hear the story for the first time said ”If what I heard about this grand  mystery woman, now a super ancestor. If what I heard of her larger than life encounters and which you confirmed as a result of your investigative  journalism  about her  is true, she needs to be immortalized. What she did beyond her grave after death surpasses any of the Biblical stories I read as an ex-Christian (FAMA is an Ifa Priestess) as well as what  I heard from active Christians. Unfortunately, these same people, Christians, will classify her miracule after death existence as witchcraft. Miracles that I applaud. If it was witchcraft, then, it was a good,  powerful witchcraft”.

    The Ifa Priestess continued ” I pray and wish she will extend and bless me with such power in this 21st century life of insecurities. I need all the miracles I can get to help my people out of the wicked acts against them everywhere, everyday as well as for my own self defense and security.”

The highly respected Traditionalist who is well known in California said she will be coming to the ancient town of Upele to the graveside of this great  woman called ARAMATU.

FAMA was sort of upset as she asked ”Was she ever reported of bad behaviour when alive? We are blind as we don’t appreciate these people of high repute” she continued

”Moremi’s statute is presently in Ile- Ife today. Ogedengbe Agbogungboro was very powerful and his statute is in Ilesha till today. I believe one day Upele people will correct the mistake and honor her,” she said, adding that UNESCO is noted for  building monuments on  our world’s past great heroes, and Aramatu’s house and grave should become  monuments and tourist attraction for us all to know how powerful Africans are. We should look inward positively and stop vilifying our heroes and heroines.”

FAMA  however   compared Aramatu with her own powerful woman in her home town, she said there was also a powerful woman in her home town  Emure-Uli,   who was equally as powerful known as Mama Kaku who legend had it that she defended the town’s Ugbo oro (Sacred Groove) when a duo timber contractors were warned not to be desecrate  the groove with their  presence but they defied the  pleas and  paid the ultimate price for their defiance.

The America-based Olorisa said ”I am willing to go to the grave side of  Aramatu to honour and worship her.” She added ”if it is America they would probably turn to a point of interest as it might become a tourist centre. It’s painful that in spite of the fact that the  White men we do much like to imitate will not despise their own heroes but in our own case  we still look down on our culture. People like Aramatu should be worshiped. She is a heroine. I wish to go there to offer prayers and sacrifices.I will scoop the earth from her grave for a possible connection with her. If she can transfer her power to me , so be it. It  will be highly appreciated,” she told our reporter.

               STILL FEARED 44 YEARS AFTER

            Despite our efforts to interview some people on the story of Aramatu which happened in 1974 many still refused to talk about her even from her town. While many  begged this reporter  for anonymity. Even in the internet there is no mention of her name. She is even feared in death 44 years after. What a powerful woman!.

 

 

Behold the grave of Ogedengbe Agbogungboro!

 

The grave site of the Yoruba Generalissimo, Ogedengbe Agbogungboro is an eyesore.

Inspite all his war exploits , his grave is unmarked.Taiwo Abiodun was there .

BoN and Chief Obanla IV at the graveside of Ogedengbe

He was a great warrior and known for his war exploits. When he was beheaded in the war front ,  he acted fast and  beheaded a woman , put her head on his neck  then searched for his own head, found it and  replaced it , then returned the woman’s head on her neck and the war continued!. It was  not a fiction, it was real. His war jacket was very, very heavy that two hefty men  cannot lift it up but surprisingly it was always hung on the spider’s web [ faran owu].

Imagine this scenario : When his  foot soldiers were weak and tired in the war front and the battle was hot   he   touched  the trees with his bare hands and the trees turned  to soldiers and the  fight continued . He appeared and disappeared at will  with his  magical power . He was very powerful as he shot arrows  from his house attacking enemies in the battle field without getting there. He was feared by the natives and non natives.He was honoured and respected. His eyes, hands,legs,  infact all parts of his body were instruments of war. This is ORISARAIBI OGEDENGBE AGBOGUNGBORO of Ilesha!

He was a chain smoker and was extra ordinarily  careful as he  always avoided being poisoned, he  used to  send  his wild dog to buy tobacco  from the market and  the dog must be greeted by all and sundry .And whoever  did not salute the dog will attract fine or punishment from the Generalissimo .According to stories , the dog was not seen again after Ogedengbe’s demise.

 

                                     Ogedengbe

According to High Chief Oyekanmi Ogedengbe Obanla  IV who presently  holds the tittle, he    said ” In Ogedengbe’s compound were  cell rooms where he used to punish his erred slaves in his courtyard.Not only this, he had some rooms where he kept his charms , juju , arms and ammunition , daggers, swords and other war materials . He  had specialized  heavy saucers he used to eat  from”.

He added ”The warrior had a big shrine where he worshiped before embarking on his war.He fought the Kiriji War allegedly caused by a woman”.

 

Some of his guns, swords

The High Chief took this reporter round the compound and some rooms , he said ”Some of the jujus and ammunition are still in some  rooms till this day, infact there are some objects you must not touch  and rooms forbidden to enter! .Some rooms have no windows.”, adding that  there are about four courtyards in the compound .However, one needs a torch light or a candlelight to go into these dark rooms, and some of the rooms look secretive and fearsome., but inspite all these , most of the iron and woods used for the building which could be about a century old are still strong .

  The High Chief put on the Warrior’s charmed ‘war clothes’ and said ” this is the war cloth and attached with all types of juju gourds.But the High Chief says he is not happy for the grave of the great Yoruba Generalissimo is not befitting.Asked whether he contacted the Government , he said ” the Osun State government promised to turn this place into a monument  while we are still waiting” .

 

        Ogedengbe Agbogungboro house in Ilesha     

 

    Ogedengbe’s Grave in the compound

A  visit to his grave site  in the compound  could make one cry as one would be surprised that inspite the fame, power and exploits of this  man called O SOKO EKITI, SOKO AKOKO (Husband of Ekiti and Akoko) his grave site is unmarked.

 

The heavy eating saucers he used

When he was being taken into exile by Captain Bower, one of Bower’s aides who came with him struck Ogedengbe’s second in command, Alimoro’s   head but the sword cut into pieces and Alimoro cut the aides’s hand .As Ogedengbe saw the hand  on the ground he picked it up , blew air on it and glued it back to the stump!

”We offered sacrifice every week here in the compound and worship Ogun , the god of iron called Iwude.

”We keep a monkey here called Gboroko Kapee for   a purpose,the late Ogedengbe had four, my late father Ogedengbe has three while my late brother Ogedengbe who did not live  up to one year  had also”. He spoke about the mystic behind the monkey, according to him a man once came here to harm my late father who was on the throne but the monkey started behaving strangely and attacked the ma , when he was searched we found charms he brought along to harm my father..Again a strange bird , an owl came here which is a bad omen and the monkey started screaming , a lovely person was reported dead the following day.

Gboroko Kapee

Asked where Ogedengbe’s charmed war cloth is , the man looked up and said ” sadly enough they took it away , however some untrustworthy fellows must have conspired for without that they couldn’t have taken it away.

His war jacket was very, very heavy that two people cannot lift it up but surprisingly it was always hung on the spider’s web [ faran owu]

High Chief Oyekanmi Ogedengbe Obanla  IV

The High Chief   said  ”War is a  profession that  runs in  our   family, many of  Ogedengbe’s grandchildren  are in the Military, Police among others”.

The late Chief Ogedengbe was born in Atorin , which is about 20kilometeres to Ilesha  in the present Atakomosa East Local Government area.His father’ s village was Oke Orisa Village.

He always floored his mates in wrestling competition thus he was given the nickname of Ogedengbe  while his  real names are Orisaraibi Apasanforijiwa.He was once captured and taken to Ibadan and that was where Basorun Ogunmola  they gave him facial marks in order to humiliate him .

On the walls of the living room are some old pictures of the great generalissimo with gourds ( ado and strings ) tied on them evidencing his  power, and also a photograph of some of his warriors. But the most painful aspect  of this story  is that of his grave  which is unmarked .

Is it fair for such a powerful man of high caliber, a Yoruba generalissimo to be forgotten despite all his exploits?

 

 

Help, my daughter is dying!

Help, my daughter is dying !

…………….Oluwasola  Kehinde needs 2.5million for heart surgery

This  13year-old JSS 3 student  Miss Oluwasola Kehinde needs 2.5million for heart surgery  ,  taiwoabiodun.com  reports

For the parents  of Miss Oluwasola Kehinde who live at No 11, Asewa Street, Owo, Ondo State it has been hell for them due to the  the deteriorating  condition  of their 13-year-old  daughter  who has been suffering from heart failure.

According to the mother Jumoke Oluwasola , it all started in 2010,  when it  she was diagnosed  that she has been suffering from  heart failure She said : “I am working as a Cleaner at the Federal Medical Center(FMC) , Owo, while my husband is  riding Okada for commercial purpose. We have been   to  churches and prayer Mountains seeking divine intervention and solution  but no positive result. Her twin sister, Taiwo is hale and hearty .I don’t know how come this girl is facing such a terrible health challenge

 

Left is Kehinde [lean] and Taiwo

“When she fell ill  four years ago we took her to the Federal Medical Centre, Owo, but  they could not detect the nature of her illness  until when we got to the  University Teaching Hospital,UCH,Ibadan where   we were referred to. The doctor at  the UCH advised us to look for money to operate  her before it is too late. I need help from good-spirited Nigerians to save this girl’s life as she is getting worse everyday.  She cannot walk like her twin sister while her legs are swollen and she breaths heavily “.

Kehinde who attends St Louis Grammar School, Owo in Ondo state has not been attending classes regularly ‘Several   times I used to carry her on my back “, said her mother

Mother and her twins

A letter  dated 27November , 2013 was issued to her by Dr.A.O .Banjo from the Department of  Paediatrics, UCH, Ibadan.

Re:Oluwasola Kehinde ,12 Years, Female , Hospital  No.1266097

The above -named was admitted on 31st October,2013 with a history of recurrent leg swelling and easy fatigability of 3years duration .She presented 8weeks after referral  from your centre .

Echo findings revealed shortened posterior leaflet of the mitral  valve and  marked deficiency of coapting edge. Also shows severe mitral  and tricuspid regurgitation .

She was managed for congestive cardiac failure 2 to Rheumatic Heart Disease  and Acute Rheumatic Fever .She has been on Captopril  25mg  daily, spironolactone 25mg tds, Hydrochlorothiazide 25mg tds and Aspirin at 1.2g a.m, 900mg p.m,600mg nocte  and had a dose of I.M Benzathine  penicillin (1.2Mega units)on 02November 2013

Latest ESR done-24mm/hr(25/11/13)

The parents have been counseled  on the need for eventual mitral valve replacement and while child is being worked up we would appreciate the short time  follow- up in your centre on account of proximity

Thank you.

The letter was signed by Dr .O.O.Ogunkunle(Consultant Paediatric Cardiologist) 

For financial assistance you can send your donation to Mrs Jumoke Olusola

First Bank, Owo.Account number (3032370028)

Telephone number 07062735973 

”I drank dog’s blood to cure myself”

 ”I drank dog’s blood to  cure myself”

…..sent away from school at JJJ 3

……..drank blood of slaughtered dog to cure her ailment

…….does not menstruate and has no breasts

Bisola Ibrahim clocked 24years  last Saturday  March 7, but she did not celebrate her birthday due to her health  challenges. At age of 5 she has been battling  a strange disease. taiwoabiodun.com met her

Her palms and feet are full of sores while her fingers and toes have deformed.

She wears socks to cover her feet while the legs have become thin.She wobbles  as she walks for she is no more  balanced . Handling  cutlery has become difficult. Bisola was not born like this. Her life started  crashing at the age of five. Medical and spiritual solutions were sought for ,but her health continued to deteriorate  until she found herself in this present condition.

For a girl of her age who should be preparing to finish from higher institution and preparing for marriage she is at home battling with strange ailment.

For the family of Mr and Mrs Ibidun Ibrahim who lives at No 11B , Igbanasa Street , Oke – Ijebu , Owo , Ondo state they have been facing a hell of problem since their daughter , Bisola was five years old

 

No birthday

Now , the girl , Bisola clocked 24years last Saturday. Bisola was born in March 7, 1994, but could not celebrate her birthday for she has neither male nor female friends to celebrate with her .No rice was cooked and no cake was cut to celebrate her birthday .Not only this, the sadness that enveloped the family over her matter could not let them remember that her birthday was at hand.But according to her father , ” My  birthday wish for her is to release her to any University Teaching Hospital  to do research on her on why her ailment defied medical solutions and why she does not menstruate and does not have breasts at the age of 24”.

How it started

Narrating her ordeal , the mother, Madam Ibidun who is a petty trader said her daughter Bisola was not born like that “she was a normal child  when she was delivered  until when she was five years old when a  boil was found on her feet and was taken  to a private hospital  where she was treated and given some injections, but  when there was no improvement we took her to the Federal Medical Center , Owo where  was also given eight injections.”

She continued ”When  there was no improvement in her health she was referred to Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) where   she was subjected to series of laboratory tests and was given some drugs .When we came back home there was a little change though we found it difficult to get some medical cream and drugs recommended for her coupled with our poor financial stand to continue going to LUTH for other medical tests .Later she continued her school and completed her primary school from there she gained admission to St Louis Girls’ school , Owo, but  again her condition was getting worse.While the disease again infected her two hands .One day [in 2010) , her school principal invited us (her parents) to school and advised us to take her away and go and take care of her , in fact a written letter was sent to us, that was how she stopped school at JSS1″, the mother said in tears

 

“While some suggested it could be leprosy that was the reason why I thought the school sent her away to go and take care of her so as not to infect other children , again laboratory tests were done which proved negative. If it is leprosy, it would have affected all of us living in the same house here”, Ibidun , her mother stated.

She drank dog’s blood

On the efforts the parents had made so far, the father who is a civil servant said ”we have taken her to many healing  homes like  spiritual homes, Alfas and herbalists.In one of these homes they asked her to drink the blood of a slaughtered dog and that she would be will be healed .In my presence a dog was killed and she was given the blood to drink , after the ‘medication’ nothing changed. Aside this , so many rituals and sacrifices had been performed or offered to make sure she regained her health back .It got to a stage I asked whoever could assist in healing  her should come out’

 

The mother continued her story ” Then when she was still between five and 10 years old I used to carry her on my back , we were given papers to do medical tests of  which she did,there was no tests we did not do; skull, nose, brain, skin, we did so many tests.After spending two months we were just doing series of tests , I then begged them to give her drugs to use for sometimes because she was in pains and agony  She was given drugs and was asked to come back six weeks or a month.They did not have most of the prescribed drugs in their pharmacy .We were given appointment to come back but we could not go back again for we had no money to go again. The cream called ‘SS of 20percent’ palm cream’ was recommended but we could not get for we only saw 10 per cent which worked partially for the recommended one was 20per cent. And she was getting better , but if it were 20per cent then may be she could have been much better then but we couldn’t get in addition we had no money again .It was money that caused it if she were to be taken back to LUTH then she would have been much better .We were struggling then, then there was no money to continue the treatment .Later we contemplated going to Spiritual churches though a doctor looked at her and said her problem did not need spiritual healing but I took her to the Synagogue in Lagos for spiritual healing.I took him to Pastor TB Joshua , the white Clergymen who officiates with Pastor TB Joshua attended to us and prayed for her .They asked us to go that she has been healed , we were asked to pray on water when we get home and that she should drink from it and wash her affected hands and legs with the water and  she would be healed.We did all these yet we did not see any changes ”

No breasts and no menstruation

The mother is concerned , as she wonders how a girl of her age has not exhibited features peculiar to a girl of her age ” She is at home doing nothing , she is jut there she does not do her monthly period and her breasts did not grow .This is incredible and I am worried “.

There is nobody to help, no assistance .It is not leprosy , she has been taken to hospitals for series of tests . I was told it is not leprosy but skin disease but what of her not seeing monthly period? I am confused ”

When her age mates are either planing to leave higher institution or completed it , she is at home nursing her wound .Now when she talks one hears her sharp and smooth talk and she does not feel shy of her condition even when the father in annoyance tells her that he would not like to see her or hear her talk , she too would repy” what can I do? Is it my fault to be like this?”

 

Bisola speaks out

Now Bisola finds it difficult to eat as she manages to use cutlery  for her hands are full of sores and she wears stockings to cover her deformed toes .She hides  away from people as she stays in a corner of the father’s living room always .

When taiwoabiodun.com approached her , she  introduced herself  “My name is Ibrahim Bisola , it has been a long  time since this thing happened to me . I just saw something like boil on my legs and I scratched it that was how everything began.but before you know it it had spread to my hands. I was later taken to the hospital ,  .I was taken to Obafemi Awolowo Teaching Hospital , Ile -Ife, LUTH , private hospitals and many places .I am going through hell.I had stopped schooling since the year 2010. I wear socks to cover the sore and my deformed legs .At my age  I have no boyfriend , I am not menstruating and I don’t know how it feels like .My chest is flat and I don’t know why and I am not a man”, she cried.

Asked whether she has a boyfriend , she replied ” Boyfriend ? I don’t have .  Me to have , who will even toast me ? .I don’t go out , I don’t have male or female friends”.She spoke with pity   and  with head drooped.

Bisi is now incapacitated by her deformed fingers and toes , her palms are full of sore while the fingers and toes are disfigured as some had fallen off and most of the time she would burst into tears .

Now ,she is aging and at home , she read only JJJ1 .She does not learn a trade or a  skill .Will she stay forever in her parent’s house ?and who will marry her in the future?

The father’s cellphone number is 08060168494 for any medical assistance .

 

 

 

Okeluse: A neglected community!

      Okeluse:      A      neglected        community!

Okeluse: A neglected community!
Okeluse is in Osse Local government in Ondo State.

An Appeal fund for everybody

The long bridge  is attractive as one sighted it from afar off but a closer look at it one could see abandoned iron rods and other construction equipment meant for the construction of the bridge. While the townsmen through their  communal effort used rough woods  to construct steps to ascend and descend in crossing  Okeluse ( Ondo state ) to the other state ( Edo state) .This also showed the uncompleted part of the bridge .A look at the uncompleted Ogbese bridge which links Ondo and Edo states could draw tears from one’s eyes seeing what the Federal Government had invested into this uncompleted gigantic project which was started since 2005 but begging for completion

The wooden step constructed for easy crossing

Now the surrounding has overgrown with weeds while the abandonment has caused a lot of heated arguments and controversies over who is to blame with the huge of money pumped into it. While in some angle some said the federal government had fully paid for the construction of the bridge but some denied while few are imploring the EFCC to go into it and ask questions.

 

Some of the caterpillar equipment grown with weeds

Now the bridge which is supposed to be used after completion has been abandoned while people from the neighboring communities are finding it difficult to pass through and instead opted for canoe which according to them had drown many especially during rainy season.

For Chief Akogun Kumapayi the head of the committee of the construction of the  bridge ,said ”we are no longer safe aside from the poor transportation network .

According to the town’s monarch Oba Adeyeoba Owasunloye III the Arujale Ojima of Okeluse ”these implements had been abandoned over 10years while this company had stopped working and this stopped the completion of the bridge which has gotten to 90percent completion”.
For the people in Okeluse in Ose Local government they claimed their community had been abandoned for a very long time as they had never for once tasted dividends of democracy.
Tucked in the bowel of Ondo State, the town Okeluse is populated with about 400,000people and they are basically into agriculture as their main business.
The town is the connecting link between Edo state and Ondo State , and if the the bridge is completed one can from there travel easily to Edo , Akure, Ore, Lagos at a lesser time framed

Another vehicle wasting away

The Okeluse -Edo State bridge has been in progress for the past 10years but it is begging for completion .The road which could have taken a commuter 10minutes drive from Okeluse to Edo is now abandoned waiting for completion .
”We met the contractor in 2013 ,when they came back to the site , and ever since then he has not come back here and that was the time I saw him last but the Site Engineer supervising used to come here , she is the person supervising the construction work’,said one of the community members

Taiwo Abiodun and The Ocaeanic News reporter,Jide Tububo in a canoe crossing to the other side

Comfort Anifowola who went through wooden canoe to Edo lamented ” this is what we have been suffering here.There is neither state or Federal government presence here at all .We are suffering as we pay 50 naira to cross to Edo state which is less than five minutes journey by paddling a canoe!”.
Anifowola continued “we have appealed to the government both at the local and state levels but the story is all the same thing as they said the contractor that handled it was not given money to continue and that it is federal government’s job”.
Deaconess Olabode another passenger was not happy as she said she is hydrophobia , she said ”I am not used to travel by water, I have hydrophobia but what do I do ? My children have warned me not to be traveling by water since I cannot swim , and if this bridge is completed one does not need going by boat as one would only cross to the other side”, she added ” many people have been robbed here just because they cannot swim , not only that some of these dare devil armed robbers have thrown people into the river and we have seen corpses flowing on the river”

c

Chief Igbumesun

Chief Akogun Igbumesun , who is the Community leader of the town said ” we are no longer safe aside from the poor transportation network. Armed robbers  drive stolen vehicles and ferried them across the river which is less than three minutes journey to Edo State. Criminal activities go on here because most of our people cannot swim thus it is an opportunity for them to use the place as a transit for their nefarious activities.But if the road is completed then life would be easy for us all.”
On the efforts they had made so far , Igbumesun said ” we have written letters , we have contacted the the government but nothing was forthcoming .
“We have the highest number of votes here and during the political campaign these politicians would come here and beg us to vote for them and when they won they forget totally about us.
The Igbinedon town is just less than a mile to this place yet one cannot walk in or walk out without the use of ferry or canoe!

Official Site
At the working site of the company one could see reptiles and weeds that had overtaken the place.The buildings are dilapidated and trees have sprouted up in them .The rooms have been taken over by snakes and animals .Some of the machines like the earth shaking machines like caterpillars( CAT) , bulldozers, cranes, tipper lorries, industrial generators, cement mixing machines, rollers are rusting away

Wooden canoe used to ferry goods ,its just less than five minutes to the other side

Details
Investigation reveals that the Managing Director of the Company handling the project is no more and it was also investigated that government has not paid up to complete the project.
But the former House of Representatives Omosule from Osse/ Owo Zone  when contacted said the project is a federal government one and it is a gradual payment depending on the stage and status it gets to,he however praised the company for spending more to the project which he thought would make it possible for the government to pay

 

 

Taiwo Abiodun inspecting the earth moving machine

According to Omosule, the bridge’s construction started in 2005 during the regime of the PDP when Hon. Alaba Ojomo e a petition to the Federal Ministry of Works and they came ,I mobilized them with 500 ,000 naira to come and look at it .Thewas in the House of Representatives. He expatiated further ” While the project started the federal government mobilized the contractor and only poles were erected there and from 2008 to 2010 nothing was put there until 2011 when I came in and wrotn they  it was not in the budget and nothing could be done for they found only pillars and we wrote again to the Ministry of Works (Highway) about the job and they promised to put it into 2012 budget but it was or pushed.

Machines wasting away

In 2013 there was no enough money as about 180 percent suffered a defeat and nothing given .However in the 2014 budget , the bridge was awarded with the sum of 300 million naira to Adekitan Construction company while I called the representatives of the youths , House and the community members to come and look at the project and it started.

 

Another  abandoned vehicle

After series of petitions from me and pleadings that the work should continue and they should be paid we later learnt that the Managing Director of the construction company has lost his sight and was in London hospital so he could not continue and the federal government cannot pay anybody except him.Even if his deputy came he cannot be paid .But unfortunately the man had spent more than what he was given to start the job as the job was almost completed and needed to be paid on what he has done so far.

 

Earth moving machine abandoned years ago !

Omosule said though the project is a long term project and the government needed to be checking it stage by stage as it does not need to be hurriedly done now based on what he has done so far he should be given 105 million naira.
But since he is not available now , it is the Board of Directors of the company that can come forward to complain and this project has been forestalled now”.
The town’s monarch Oba Adeyeoba Owasunloye III the Arujale Ojima of Okeluse said he is not happy about the situation, his words ” we are all in the dark as we heard so many rumours about the uncompleted Ogbese bridge.Some claimed they have fully paid for the completion of the bridge while others said the federal government is yet to balance and let the contractor finish his job, so we are at lost.My pleading to those concerned is to let the bridge completed on term. Everywhere is developing and we are still backward here, imagine a project that started since 2005!.This is baffling us here and we are not happy here at all”. the community head declared to taiwoabiodun.com

waiting endlessly they thought a Messiah had arrived when two years ago some of the leaders approached the the Minister of works ,Mike Onolememeh who promised to look into their complaints,thus they happily wrote the following letter and posted it on facebook

Okeluse Sons and Daughters
March 23 ·
OGBESE BRIDGE : BREAKING NEWS
OGBESE BRIDGE @ OKELUSE “COMPLETED & FULLY PAID FOR”
—-Minister for Works, Mike Onolememen (Arch)
Who says perseverance has no gains? Who says only elected people can make things happen? The moribund Ogbese bridge project in Okeluse has proved that when people unite and work together, things happen.
We want to thank all the concerned Nigerians who read about the plight of our people in Okeluse regarding the truncated bridge and responded.
We are humbled at the myriad of support we got from Nigerians especially concerned politicians from the north as well as friends from Okitipupa, Akure, Owo, Ute, Ifon and many of the fighters from Bayelsa, Imo, Enugu states. Special thanks to our brothers from Cross Rivers who gave us useful tips. We cannot but mention our dependable motivators who are outside the shores of this nation. Those in Europe and USA who join us in the fight to get to the roots of the Ogbese bridge debacle in order to finish it soonest. We thank you guys in South Africa, Ghana, Brazil, etc who expressed solidarity with us and gave us hints on what to do through their inbox message

 


From Okeluse we want to appreciate Rev. Cannon Emmanuel Olasehinde Sunday for his steadfastness and backing. He alone of the multitude from our city showed his genuine concern and gave us his support in our campaign while othsimply thought we are embarking on a risky adventure. Thanks to Ayibiowu Donald Esq for his willingness to work from his Abuja office. We believe there are many sons and daughters who are working privately. To you all we say thank you. The campaign is working.
The Ogbese bridge is for all Nigerians but some people will benefit more than others. We fall into that group of immediate beneficiaries. We all therefore need to collectively unite in order to alleviate the suffering of our people. Thanks to all those who join us in our campaign. The struggle has just begun! But with God we shall be victorious.
After several months of our campaign to call the attention of those connected to the Ogbese bridge at Okeluse, we finally got the rare privilege to talk to the Minister for Works, Mike Onolememen Arch. His assertion is shocking to say the least.
When we began this campaign, many people responded and we got the engineer in charge of the bridge. She shed light on the work and her company. She revealed to us that her Director, Mr Dele Olagunju of Dekit Construction company is alive as well as the company. Efforts to get Dele Olagunju to talk to us remains unfruitful.
We also reported that the bridge has become a white elephant to the politicians both in our state and elsewhere. We have launched many attempts to speak to the officers of the Federal Ministry of Works. We got many of them but they were not in the position of authority to speak on the Ogbese bridge at Okeluse. We went to the Ministry of Works to talk to their staff but many of them declined to comment on the work.
In February, we got a link to the Federal Minister of Works himself, Mike Onolememen Arch who did not waste time in clearing the air and putting the records about the bridge straight as it is.
The Honourable Minister was baffled that the Ogbese bridge at Okeluse is uncompleted. He was saddened at man’s inhumanity to man. According to him, “The funds had been given to them long ago but they took it and couldn’t complete the job”. As far as his office was concerned, the bridge is COMPLETED because it has been FULLY PAID for. The Minister expressed remorse when he saw the pictures of the incomplete bridge which we sent to him as proofs.
RESPONSIBILITY
The Minister believed that those in authority in Ondo state, especially our elected leaders, namely the Honourable representing our area; Hon. Eniolorunda Omoshule; Senator Boroffice, and Governor Mimiko were in the best position to pursue the project at the Federal level because it is a Federal project. According to him, those Federal officers have direct access to his office or any of his colleagues any time any day. “They are our boss. They put us here and can send us away from here. So we are answerable to them”, he added.


APPRECIATION
The Minister however showed his appreciation to us for bringing this abandoned project to his notice. “I want to use this medium to say a very big thank you for bringing this to my notice! I will include it to my list of uncompleted projects and soonest work will begin there again okay.Thank you once again I will not let you down!” The Minister added.
HOPE!
As things were, the bridge project was dead! What we have been able to achieve among many others is to reposition the bridge as an “UNCOMPLETED” project and bringing the work out of the dust bin and placing it on top of the Minister’s table for re-consideration.
We would have remained hopeful in nothing for years without knowing that the bridge has been “completed” and “fully paid for” on paper.


SUMMARY

Now we stand a better chance since we now know the true pictures and situation of the bridge. Politicians cannot come to cajole us again with the bridge. The summary of the whole finding is that WORK IS DEAD ON THE BRIDGE!!! NO ONE IS WORKING ON IT NOW. THE CONTRACTOR IS NOT WORKING NEITHER IS ANYONE!!! Reason for this is that as said above, “the bridge is completed and fully paid for long time ago”.
CLARION CALL
We thank all Nigerians and concerned people. We want to call on all those office holders the Minister and we all hold responsible namely (Mimiko, Boroffice & Eni Omoshule) to wake up and approach the Ministry of Works for necessary corrections they have the power to effect before their time in office expires.
We call on all Nigerians especially Ondo and Edo states’ people to pull resources together so that this vital bridge will be completed speedily.
We welcome more suggestions on how we can go from here. Pls be assured that we shall always treat your suggestions confidentially. If you cannot share publicly please inbox your opinions or ideas. You are all well appreciated.

Two years after this letter there is no word head from them more so power has changed hands.

the community is now on their own.

However, investigation reveals that the man handling the project  has died.

Now they have resorted to sand fill some areas of the bridge which will cost 4million naira to complete and now begging the good-spirited Nigerians , natives and government to come and assist them .

I saw Balewa and Okotie Eboh’s bodies

”I saw  Balewa and Okotie Eboh’s bodies”

Bishop Adebayo

Tafawa     and   Okotie Eboh

”I saw   Balewa and Okotie Eboh’s bodies”

Bishop Zacheaus Ayinla Adebayo narrates how he saw the dead bodies of   the late head  of state Abubakar Tafawa Balewa and the  Finance Minister Festus Okotiebo which he discovered in a bush 52 years ago.He spoke with taiwoabiodun.com

One man that is not happy  every year  when the country remembers the January 15, 1966  that consumed some of our leaders is Bishop Zacheaus Ayinla Adebayo Of  African Church , who lives in Abule- Oke ,Iyana Ilogbo, Lagos /Abeokuta Express Road, Ogun state.

According to Adebayo , he is not happy that some people are rewriting History, he therefore seized the opportunity to correct those  misinforming the public with false and untrue story of how the duo Sir  Abubakar Tafawa Balewa and the Finance Minister Festus Okotie Eboh  died, and how their bodies were found in the bush at Coker, Iyanalogbo, along Lagos / Abeokuta Express Road.
According to Adebayo , the memory of the slain bodies of the late Balewa and Okotie  Eboh will forever remain in his memory as long as he lives .
Adebayo who is a Bishop went down memory lane to speak about his shock and effort to report the case.
According to him , he was still in his early 20s when the First Military coup took place in Nigeria.
Speaking with taiwoabiodun,com  he said “my late father , Timothy Osho Adebayo had rice plantation farm in Iyana – Ilogbo, Lagos / Abeokuta express road then, I was pressed and wanted to go to the toilet and I needed to cross the road, as I got to where I would defecate in the bush I saw the body of Okotie Eboh in pyjamas , and by my right hand also was the body of Tafawa Balewa in white leaning on a Palm tree , he was shot on  the  chest while Okotie Eboh’s side was riddled with bullets . I saw the two bodies with my naked eyes,the bodies were already decomposing” , he continued ” Immediately I saw the two bodies I went to tell my father that I saw two bodies the government was looking for.There was a pond at the back of where Tafawa Balewa laid and we all ran back home. We alerted other farmers to vacate the place and they rushed back home”.
The Bishop continued “We had heard the announcement over the radio that whoever saw these bodies should come and report .Then the following day some pressmen came and among them was one Mr .Segun Osoba who reported the story , he was with The Daily Times then, and he later became the governor of Ogun state.The third day the two corpses were taken away by some soldiers”
He continued ” several years later when Osoba came to campaign here and I introduced myself to him that I was the one that spotted the place where those corpses were discovered for him to write his story then , he was surprised and promised to make the place a tourist Center .
“When he became the Ogun State governor I reminded him and he did promise to do something but nothing was done.If the place had been turned into a tourist Center now and marked down for everybody to know the spot it would have added to our museum. I remember then that many traditionalists came to mark the area and scooped the earth . But since the place was not mapped out for recognition nobody cared about the place again”.
Adebayo appeals to the state and federal governments to make the place a tourist Center, he said ” if it is in a civilized country the place would be honored and mapped out as a tourist attraction Center in the honor of the fallen heroes and this would even be a source of income to both the state and federal governments”
Beating his chest, Adebayo said ” I want those who are rewriting and distorting history to come for public debate.Today, I still live around the place. I know the very spot .My concern is that the place should be a monument to commemorate the remembrance of these fallen heroes “.
He spoke with confidence “I am now 75 years , I remember that year 1966 , it looks like yesterday .Later Segun Osoba came here to verify it when the news spread and he later went to publish the story .
The Bishop who is still bitter,  said ” Osoba promised that the place will be turned into a tourist Centre but nothing was done .The place is now a town , but nevertheless I can still recognize the spot .Whenever I remember Janunary 15 , I am always sad .As a Bishop I feel sad”.
He boasts to face anybody that has a contrary report to come out openly for public debate ,” Whoever doubts this story should invite me and I am ready to tell the public “