Published On: Mon, Mar 18th, 2024

Delta Police Invite Prominent Olu Of Warri For Questioning Over  Okere Crisis


LAGOS MARCH 18TH (URHOBOTODAY)-First-class traditional ruler, Olu of Warri, Ogiame Atuwatse III, has been invited by the Delta State Command of the Nigeria Police Force following a petition allegedly written against the monarch, SaharaReporters has learnt.

According to a security source privy to the issue, the petition involved alleged cases of attempted murder among others.

 A police invitation letter obtained by SaharaReporters titled “Police Investigation Letter: Re: Case Of Attempted Murder, Assault Occasioning Harm, Malicious Damage And Conduct Likely To Cause Breach Of Peace”, signed by the Assistant Commissioner of Police, ACP Abubakar, Warri Area Command headquarters of the Nigeria Police Force, Warri, Delta State, said the petition was being investigated.

The letter reads, “This office is investigating the aforementioned case reported at the Area Command Headquarters, Warri, sequel to a petition dated 11th of March, 2024. With due respect your Majesty, it is requested with high esteem for you to have a meeting with the Area Commander on Wednesday 13th day of March, 2024. Your usual cooperation and response to the invitation will be highly honoured please.”

However, it is not clear whether the monarch honoured the invitation at the time of filing this report.

Meanwhile, tension is said to be growing in Okere community in the Warri South Local Government Area of the state following an attack on some indigenes of the area who are supporters of a traditional leader of Itsekiri, Ayirimi Emami, over his insistence on the edict as regards the succession to the throne of Olu of Warri and the preservation of Itsekiri customs and traditions.

SaharaReporters learnt that the attack was carried out by armed thugs suspected to be working for a traditional ruler in the area who did not want to be challenged by anyone over his traditional stool.

The main targets of the attacks included Okere community leaders identified as David Iwere and Philip Awani.

Speaking with SaharaReporters, some of the victims of the attack said there were heavy gunshots on Thursday evening around 6:00 pm at Okere community in Warri by armed thugs.

It was learnt that houses, cars and other belongings of those attacked were not spared as the armed thugs allegedly overpowered the few policemen maintaining peace and security in the community and unleashed terror, causing tension amongst residents of Okere and its environs.

Reacting to the attack in a release signed by one of the Okere community leaders, David Iwere, he said, “The reason for the attack is our support for Chief Ayirimi Emami, over his stands on the edict regarding the succession to the throne of Olu of Warri and the preservation of Itsekiri custom and tradition.

“As we talk, these people usually make use of private radio in Warri to incite ignorant women and youths against some of us, standing with Chief Ayirimi Emami, by extension, the law of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as it relates to succession of the throne of Warri Kingdom. We will not succumb to the continued attacks. The Inspector General of Police should take note of the lawlessness and destruction being carried out by armed thugs under the instructions of a monarch.”

When contacted, the spokesperson for the state police command, SP Edafe Bright, said he did not know about the reported shooting.

“This is not to my knowledge,” he said.

Regarding the invitation of the Olu of Warri, Ogiame Atuwatse III by the police, he said, “If there is a petition to the police, no matter who is involved we are duty-bound to investigate but the content of the petition, I don’t have it and for that incident, I don’t have information whether it happened or not.

“I remember that at the earlier stage when journalists were calling me, I debunked it that I was not aware but I will start speaking to them.”


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