By Gbenga Olarinoye
Osogbo—There are fears that the people of Ile-Ife and the neighbouring Modakeke community may soon take up arms against one another over alleged encroachment into the land of Ife.
Palpable tension is building within the two communities on a daily basis and only urgent action by the government may save the situation from degenerating to a bloody clash that may lead to loss of lives and properties.
Specifically, the youth in Ife accused the Modakeke community of allegedly flouting the peace agreement reached by the two communities in 1999 after the clash that claimed several lives and properties worth billions of naira.
The youths in Ife, in a letter to Governor Rauf Aregbesola which was copied to all the security agencies in Osun State, a copy which was obtained by Vanguard in Osogbo, weekend, said: “On behalf of the generality of youths in Ile-Ife, these pressure groups known as Great Ife Movement, GIM and Ife Youth Vanguard, IYV, wish to intimate your excellency of imminent incursion on Ife-land and for your Excellency to use your good offices as the Chief Security Officer of this state, to urgently do the right thing at the right time to impending trouble. Otherwise the 1997-2000 Modakeke/Ife imbroglio may be a child’s play.
“What we are saying is that Modakeke has started again as led by its traditional head, the Ogunsua of Modakeke-Ife. They are trespassing on Ife’s belongings.
“They are cunningly and forcefully depriving our Obas, Baales, chiefs and Ife people of their inheritance with impunity. They are daily boasting that they are ready to bribe the authorities at the state level (and even the Chiefs in Ile-Ife) in order to continue with their nefarious activities against Ife people.
“For instance, the Ogunsua is daily tactically replacing the Ooni appointed Obas and Baales with his own favourites in Ife North Local Government Area. This is usurping the authority of the Ooni of Ife and it is in contrast with the Ife Native Law and Custom.
“This is our bitter experience now at Toro, Famia, Oyere , Opoye, Ejesi, Alapata, Jabata, Igbofon-Salami, Kilibi, Rogborogbo, Idi-iroko, Kinkinyinun/Onibambu, Oyoo-lowa, Oyo-onikeke, etc where the Ogusua is appointing his own Obas and Baales to replace those earlier appointed by the late Ooni Sijuade, Olubuse. The lives of Ooni-appointed Obas and Baales are also often being threatened.’’
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