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Commemorating The Black Jan. 24 Illegal Demolition Of Prince Henry Okafor's Palatial Country Home, Time For Justice Is Now! 

By Greg Ugo Obioha
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Today being 24th January marks one year Anniversary of the January 24th, 2019 gruesome and barbaric demolition of palatial Country Home of Prince Dr. Henry Uzor Okafor in his Village, his father's kingdom at Ossemoto, Oguta LGA, Imo State. That wickedness was a malicious act of mindless and vindictive politicians who deployed demolition strategy to harass, dehumanize, demoralize and whittle down the soaring electoral influence of the Ossemoto born Medical Doctor turned politician. It was done with wicked intentions to cause social unrest in that resourceful and peaceful port-kingdom of the Aros of Ossemoto. Those who did it targeted the 2019 elections believing that Ossemoto people would rise to resist the 'arrangee police squad' illegally deployed to cause that luciferous damage and ordinarily, such confrontation would have precipitated the reign of anarchy and blood bath. That would have been a straight jacket disruption of elections in the Area and with that their usual block vote for any preferred candidate/party of their choice would have been truncated. Wisdom prevailed as the peaceful and well composed Royal Prince calmed fried nerves and personally stopped his people from violent reaction over the grave injustice to avoid the snare /trap of his enemies.

The devilish act was sponsored and those who did the criminality hide under none existent Supreme Court judgement that had nothing to do with the Ossemoto land of the Okafor royal family. If there was any Supreme Court judgement against any group or Community near Ossemoto, that should not warrant deploying same to sneak into a peaceful Community to destroy a hard earned palatial mansion that took a young man over eight years to put in place through life savings. The speed at which the dastardly and despicable act was carried out suggested vendetta and intimidation from powerful forces that felt threatened and uncomfortable with Dr. Okafor's soaring height in politics and having turned down their overtures, the only option left to them was to hide under fathom supreme Court judgement to demolish a house someone built in his Village and father's compound.

We must condemn such evil and wickedness and whoever that supports such act of savagery and inhumanity shall live to reap it a million times. The Okafor royal family are of Aro stock and like all Aros everywhere in Igboland with Aro settlement heritage, Ossemoto was one of their precolonial and colonial settlements near the shores of Oguta lake. The Aros were itinerant business men and middle men who dominated coastal and hinterland trade before and during colonial era. The hinterland igbos depended on them for foreign goods which they brought from the European merchants who equally depended on them for supply of African products like Slaves and much later, palm produce following the abolition of slave trade and introduction of legitimate trade. The presence of various Aro groups in their scattered settlements across igbo and Ibibio land is a serious historical issue and reality that can't be contested anywhere hence it amounts to criminality and sociectal aberration for any person or group to contest the lawful existence of Aro Ossemoto, a settlement founded by their forefathers centuries ago. If that is contested by any group at all, such people should equally relocate to the original root or abode of their own progenitors because every tribe, sub tribe, subgroup or community has its own history of existence cum origin which could be traced through oral traditions, archeaological and anthropological finding(s).The Aros of Ossemoto are no exception to this alongside their neighbors such as Oguta Amaeshi, EgbuOma, Egbema, Ohaji, Nnebugwu, Orsu-Obodo and the rest of various riverine igbos populaly referred to as Oru stock of the Igbo language dialect. Everybody came from somewhere!

The incumbent Governor of IMO State, His Excellency Senator Hope Uzodinma, well known for philanthropy and magnanimity should set up a high powered enquiry to unravel what really happened and follow it up with state compensation because the victim of that inhumanity is an Imo citizen. No citizen deserves to be injured or dispossed of his property. It is absurd that government and it's agencies could be compromised and deployed as willing tool for vendetta and injustice. The Nigeria Police is lawful institution that executes the law and the implication is that they should know the law and equally protect same, no matter whose ox is gored. In this case of despicable Ossemoto episode, they broke the law and nearly caused break down of law and order, if not the maturity and humanity displayed by Ossemoto people. We can accuse the police and then state government of complicity. Such level of damage to have been done under the watch of the police and state government signaled a high profiled connivance and conspiracy to deal ruthlessly with an innocent man. This suspects remain the agents of the then government and police authorities. Since the existence of Ossemoto Community, no government or it's agency had invaded the place or conspired with enemies of the community to perpetrate such luciferous act except under the last rescue government. It was under Rescue mission that such savagery and harm was done to a law abiding citizen.Now,is the time to console and compensate Dr Henry Okafor. Ossemoto needs urgent rehabilitation, reconstruction and reintegration. This measure will heal old wounds and massage old indelible scars. Governor Hope should rise to the occasion and do justice to Citizen Henry Okafor.

As we commemorate this black 24 January, may we condemn this evil and unanimously call that such stupidity and impunity should not happen again. Let's arise in unison as well and demand for Justice on behalf of Citizen Okafor and let necessary reparations, atonments and compensation be made. We know Governor Hope as a kind and compassionate leader, let him act now! Let Onwa act decisively now! Let brotherly love prevail and be shown now!

In every situation, we must glorify God and in this case, may his precious name be glorified, Amen! To God be the Glory!

Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of Greg Ugo Obioha and do not necessarily reflect those of The Nigerian Voice. The Nigerian Voice will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article."