Akpan Etukudoh Asare
Traditional Rulers in two local government areas of Cross River State, namely Obubra and Odukpani have sworn to an oath to stop incessant fighting, destruction and bloodletting in their different communities.
The traditional rulers held separate meetings at their different councils on different days.
The Obubra meeting of the warring monarchs was at the instance of Brotherhood of the Cross and Star, a Christian spiritual organization led by Leader Olumba Olumba Obu.
The other was at the instance of the paramount ruler of Odukpani LGA, Etinyin Otu Asuquo Otu Mesembe, the sixth, which had all the other traditional rulers and village heads in thr council in attendance. The meeting addressed the various issues in the area.
The paramount ruler warned that any traditional ruler who could not control youths in his domain would be sanctioned, and his certificate of recognition withdrawn.
Addressing the traditional rulers, Etinyin Asuquo Otu Mesembe regretted that there had been destruction of lives and property in the area in recent times.
The monarch wondered why brothers should take up arms against themselves in the name of boundary disputes.
The Royal father observed that due to the crises in some communities in the area, many people had been rendered homeless.
Etinyin Mesembe said if the situation was not brought under control, it would affect the forthcoming general elections in the area., warning against using youths to foment trouble before, during and after the election.
The state Commissioner for Finance, Mr Asuquo Ekpenyong who represented governor Ben Ayade on the occasion commended the traditional rulers for coming together to find solution to problems in the area.
The commissioner stated that the state government was concerned about the bloody communal clashes which had claimed the lives of innocent people in the area.
Different traditional rulers who spoke stressed the need for peaceful coexistence and supported the decision for all traditional rulers in warring communities to take traditional oaths to stop clashes among them.
Meanwhile, two traditional rulers in Obubra LGA whose communities were perpetually at war with themselves have now agreed and vowed to live in peace from hence. The two waring community chieftains are those of Adun and Okom Clans.
The peace settlement was held at the Obubra Sports Stadium
The Paramount ruler of Obubra, clan heads and about 40 village heads of Osopong, Adun, Ofumbongha/Yala and Okom Clans of Obubra Local Government Area over the weekend vowed that they will never go to war with their neighbours.
The head Chiefs of the Four Kingdoms in Obubra; Chief Patrick Erong, the Kudiden of Adun, His Royal Highness, Ovarr Robert Mbina Mbina, the Ohorodo I of Okom Kingdom, His Royal Highness, Ovarr Lawrence Ayang, Clanhead of Ofumbongha/ Yalla Kingdom, and His Royal Highness, Ovarr Louis Enyam, the Clan Head of Ijangha Bit/Osopong attended the event with most of their subordinate Chiefs fully adorned in their traditional regalia.
The two monarchs from the two waring communities in Obubra physically demonstrated the Peace deal by drinking ‘water of purification’ from the same bowl before members of Brotherhood of the Cross and Star and large number of subjects and natives.
The two had embraced each other warmly to the admiration and applause of the witnesses and other chiefs who joined the the frenzy.
Speaking at the occasion after the Peace Treaty, the Clan Head of Adun Kingdom, Chief Patrick Erong Kwudiden of Adun said he had had a long time enmity with his colleague, His Royal Highness Ovarr Robert Mbina Mbina Ohorodo I of Okom KIingdom, for years without genuine reconciliation, but in view of the intervention and Peace Feast organized by Brotherhood of the Cross and Star in Obubra, he has totally forgiven him.
Also speaking, His Royal Highness Ovarr Robert Mbina Mbina Ohorodo I of Okom Kingdom confirmed the protracted bitterness that hitherto existed between him and the Clan Head of Adun Kingdom, Chief Patrick Erong and assured that they have genuinely reconciled.
He prayed God to touch the minds of the youths of Obubra, whom he said, were misled by the politicians to make them to cause war with their brothers, vowing that he has abstained from war and giving support to warfare, even if it came to his doorpost, he will maintain his Peace.
In his own speech, His Royal Highness Ovarr Lawrence Ayang of Ofumbongha/Yalla Kingdom, who spoke on behalf of the Paramount ruler of Obubra, was deeply grsteful for the peace settlement.
In his emphasis on need for peace drawn from the Bible, Christ Ambassador Emmanuel Ekuri who represented leader of the BCS admonished that ” If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Whoever follows Peace with all men shall experience the Peace of God”.