Tension is gradually returning between the people of Ogbe-Ijoh in Warri South West Local Government Area and their neighbours of Aladja in Udu Local Government Council, both in Delta State over the alleged torture of Pst. Yerinbide Sylvester, an Indigene of Ogbe-Ijoh leading to his death by assailants from Aladja community.
In a statement signed and issued to newsmen in Warri earlier today by the Chairman of Ogbe-Ijoh Warri Kingdom structure of the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) , Amb. Victor Akemotubo, a copy of which was sent to The Liberator Newspapers Worldwide, the IYC had called on the Delta State Government and security agencies to urgently investigate the matter and bring the perpetrators to book.
The statement had noted that Pst. Yerinbide Sylvester, a native of Ogbe-Ijoh Warri Kingdom was going to Aladja community on Friday 29th of October 2021 for an all night programme as a Pastor in Redeem Christian Church of God when assailants from Aladja community attacked him and allegedly beat him to a pulp before he was rescued by some Ogbe-Ijoh youths that are commercial motorcyclists plying Ogbe-Ijoh/Aladja road.
The statement continued that after rushing him in a pool of blood to Ogbe-Ijoh for treatment in an hospital there, the health condition of Sylvester deteriorated to an extent that he was rushed to SAGE clinic in Warri for further treatment on Saturday 30th of October 2021.
The Ogbe-Ijoh Warri Kingdom IYC asserted that it was in SAGE clinic that young Pastor Yerinbide Sylvester gave up the ghost yesterday owing to the alleged severe torture.
Meanwhile, the statement had advised natives of Ogbe-Ijoh and Ijaws not to pass through Aladja until further notice.
The statement reads in full below:
October 30, 2021
ATTACK OF PASTOR YERINMENE: BRING PERPETRATORS TO JUSTICE, IYC OGBE-IJOH URGE GOV. OKOWA, SECURITY AGENCIES
….Says we are being pushed to the wall, and heaven will not fall if we retaliate…
The attention of the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) Ogbe-Ijoh Warri Kingdom has been drawn to the attack by assailants from Aladja Community, which has unfortunately led to the death of Pastor Sylvester Yerinbide. The IYC is saddened by this unfortunate development. Hence, we extend our heartfelt condolences to Pastor Sylvester Yerinbide’s family and unequivocally condemn the act.
We call on the leadership of Aladja Community to fish out these criminals for them to face the wrath of the law.
Equally so, we call on the Delta State Government led by Senator Dr Ifeanyi Okowa and security agencies to investigate and bring the perpetrators of this dastardly act to justice.
Our people have been a victim of these quiet perpetual attacks. Either buildings in Ogbe-Ijoh are set ablaze or our people are attacked .
We are not cowards; we are being pushed to the wall and heaven will not fall if we retaliate.
The world should be aware that we are peace loving people, and we will do everything to resist oppression and protect our people.
We will continue to preach for peaceful coexistence among other communities and tribes, but let our peacefulness not be seen as a cowardly act: Because as Ijaw people we have never been conquered and we will never be.
According to the victim before he died, he said he hear them speaking Urhobo dialect while beating him in Aladja community on his way to Aladja community on Friday 29th of October 2021 for an all night church programme in the Redeem Christian Church of God saying “do fast”, unknown to them that he was privileged enough to understand the Urhobo language since his mother is also an Urhobo.
It has been said by the Government of Delta State and security agencies that the community that will first attack will be dealt with, hence we are calling on the Delta State Government and security agencies to do the needful now.
Finally the IYC Ogbe-Ijoh Warri Kingdom advice the general public most especially the Ijaw people not to pass through Aladja to Ogbe-Ijoh till further notice.
God bless you.
Amb. Victor Akemotubo Chairman IYC Ogbe-Ijoh Warri Kingdom.
Nevertheless, all efforts geared towards reaching out to the people of Aladja in order to hear their own side of the story proves abortive.