Umugama Ezedike indigenes are peaceful and cannot engage in act of lawlessness. And that Umugama indigenes are lawful have been mistaken for cowardice as some of the cajoling boasts of these charlatans make Umugama people appear. When the tiger hides its strength, it plays with other animals.
Sixtus Chibueze Ezennaya
Umuchu is a town south of Aguata Local Government Area of Anambra State. As a town with large expanse of Land, material and human resources, it shares commson boundaries with Uga, Amesi, Achina, Enugwu-Umuonyia, Umuomaku, Ezira and Umunze all in Anambra State while Arondizuogu, Umualaoma and Akokwa all in Imo State. Umuchu is made up of these communities, Ugwuakwu, Umugama, Ozalla-Akukwa, Osete, Ogu and Umubuilo. Others include Umubuogu, Umuojogwo, Umuojum and Amihe. Ibughubu and Achalla make up the communities.
Akokwa, on her part, is situated in the northern part of Ideato North Local Government Area of Imo State. The town is bordered by Arondizuogu, Uzii, Osina, Isiokpo and Akpulu all in Imo State then Uga and Umuchu all in Anambra State. By the virtue of autonomous status granted to the villages in Akokwa, virtually, all the six villages that make up Akokwa are now on their footings namely: Umuopia, Owerre, Akwu, Umuezeaga, Umuokwara and Umukegwu. Out of these autonomous communities, it is only four, Owerre, Umuopia, Umuezeaga and Akwu that share common borders with Umuchu.
Right from time immemorial, Umuchu and Akokwa people have lived in peace, married one another and exchanged visits and pleasantries during festivities. Even now, the cordial relationship and cultural ties have continued to wax stronger. The jokes being cracked and ripples of laughter, the people of the two communities cause anytime and anywhere they meet or sit together, are now a thing of admiration. It is only an Akokwa or Umuchu man that can tell the other that your face is like that of money or that a man from your side was caught mating with a bitch and it will be laughed off. Umuchu-Akokwa jokes are usually enjoyed by many people from the communities around the area. These jokes are special appetizer or entertainment peculiar to the two communities. Any of the communities that want trouble should risk it at any of the surrounding neighbouring communities.
The Umuchu-Akokwa, precisely Umugama-Umuopia boundary dispute, erupted officially like volcano in the late 70s which the National Boundary Commission promptly waded into and demarcated the land. Since then, there has been peaceful and harmonious co-existence of the communities.
But in the last few years, some “nouveau riche” from Akokwa in one or two of the border autonomous communities began to encroach on the side of the land belonging to Umugama Umuchu and because of the belief of these “money bags” and “money miss road” in the power of money and might is right, the trespass degenerated to the level of appropriation of the land by force using thugs and stationing gunmen at the site to shoot sporadically to scare people while building construction is going on. Umugama Ezedike indigenes are peaceful and cannot engage in act of lawlessness. And that Umugama indigenes are lawful have been mistaken for cowardice as some of the cajoling boasts of these charlatans make Umugama people appear. When the tiger hides its strength, it plays with other animals.
The traditional adage that no man takes the wife of his fellow man because the husband has a small penis is divine and still in force. In the Bible, when David did it to Uriah the Hittite, God never left David unpunished. When King Ahab took Naboth’s Vineyard, dogs licked the blood of King Ahab on that same land. It is also against God’s injunction to change boundary land marks.
The two State Boundary Commissions are quite aware of these problems as they have received complaints. As the people of the area await the National Boundary Commission to come and save the situation, the Commission ought to use this opportunity to intervene in other boundary problems of Ugwuakwu Umuchu vs Owerre Akokwa and Achalla Umuchu vs Umualaoma.
There are ancient land marks like streams, rivers, valleys which are still in existence but miscreants have defrauded some land speculators by selling these pieces of land across these borders to them. The pertinent question is, “Who sold the land to those who claim ownership now?” Can one sell what does not belong to him? No one gives what he has not (Nemo dat quod non habet).
- Ezennaya is the Assistant State Secretary APGA Abia State.