THE people of Ilaje and Ikale communities of Ondo State have protested against their exclusion in the on-going ethnographic survey of the disputed territories of Ondo/Ogun interstate boundaries by the National Boundary Commission (NBC).
The people of the two communities alleged the NBC of deliberately excluded the two communities who are the real stakeholders in the disputed territories in the area.
Speaking on behalf of the two communities, their counsel, Tosin Omotayo, said that the llaje communities which include ltebu-Elero/Manuwa, lrokun, lgbo-Edun, Eba, Mosafejo, Elefon, and Olosunmeta were not captured in the ethnographic survey of the disputed territory of the Ondo/Ogun inter-states boundaries.
He added that others on the coast of lkale communities include Ayila and Ayetumara in the disputed territories of Ondo and Ogun boundaries.
The people said in their protest letter made available to journalists said “We wish to bring to your attention that our communities were not captured in the ongoing ethnographic survey of the disputed territories of Ondo/Ogun inter-states boundaries.
“Our communities from time immemorial have been part of llaje or lkale administrations which are presently llaje and Okitipupa local government of Ondo State.
The people alleged that the ethnographic survey conducted in ltebu Elero/Manuwa on August 21st this year by the NBC remained inconclusive as its officials were ordered to vacate the community by a top official of the Ogun State government without visiting any of their communities before leaving.
They said “our people and communities have long resolved not to be part of any ljebu or Ogun State administration as we are aware of the iniquitous arrangement where we are not qualified to be chairman or our so-called local government not allowed to rise in the civil service.
“We are also not in agreement to the insult of subjecting the appointment of our traditional rulers to the abominable consent of ljebu obas who came from the upland to meet us on our soil in the riverine environment.
“We are not unaware of the acts of Ogun state to appoint non-indigenes and non-resident surrogate rulers for some of our communities claiming to represent us from outside.
They, however, prayed that the “NBC, the National Assembly, the government of the two states and all stakeholders as agreed, should ensure that the ongoing ethnographic study/ survey of disputed territories be pursued to its logical conclusion in resolving the age-long dispute between the two sister states.
“That in the interest of justice and fairness, the ethnographic survey/ study be jointly conducted involving officials of the commission, the two state governments, officials of concerned councils, the people of the concerned communities and delegates of the House of Representative’s Public Petition Committee.