Protests rock Warri over appointment of Itsekiri man to head Ogbe-Ijoh market

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Some Ijaw youths in Warri, Delta State have protested over who controls the yet-to-be-completed Ogbe-Ijoh Market.

Crisis reportedly reared its ugly head over the alleged appointment of an Itsekiri man as Market Master of the Ogbe-Ijoh Market in Warri South Local Government Area.

The appointment made by the chairman of the local government, Dr Michael Tidi, it was gathered, did not gone down well with the Ogbe-Ijoh people.

Tribune Online reports that the Ijaws are insisting that only their kinsman is qualified to be appointed as the master of Ogbe-Ijoh Market and not any other from the Itsekiri or Urhobo.

To register their disaffection with the development, the Ogbe-Ijoh chapter of the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) Worldwide, on Wednesday, embarked on a peaceful protest.

The Ijaw youths chanted solidarity songs during the peaceful protest near the market in Warri.

The boys were armed with placards with inscriptions such as, “We say No to Itsekiri market master & Agbassa Market Secretary imposed on Ogbe-Ijoh market.”

Other inscriptions included: “Delta State Government, please come and complete the building of Ogbe-Ijoh market.”

Meanwhile, the IYC chairman in Ogbe-Ijoh, Smart Okosun, while addressing the protesters, condemned the appointment of an Itsekiri man as the market master in Ogbe-Ijoh market.

He advised that the Ogbe-Ijoh Market Committee already in place to continue to oversee the affairs of the market and not the committee set up by the Warri South LGA chairman until the market is completed.

“Today, we condemn that act and we will not allow the market master appointed by Tidi to work in this council.

“As the council, I have come to render my grievances with my people to the State Government to come and build the Ogbe-Ijoh market,” he noted.

Responding on phone with Tribune Online to the allegations, the secretary of Warri South LGA, Mr Joseph Oribioye, said the actions of the local government chairman were purely based on civil service procedures, devoid of primordial sentiments.