By Miracle Esegha, Warri
The Urhobo Youth Leaders Association and the Urhobo Progress Union Youth Wing Worldwide, have issued a 14-day ultimatum to the Chairman of Warri South Local Government Council, Dr Michael Tidi for allegedly destroying the signpost at the Urhobo Cultural Centre along Okere Road, Otovwodo, Agbarha-Ame Kingdom, demanding reinstatement of the signpost and unreserved apology to the Urhobo nation.
This is according to an open letter addressed to Governor Sheriff Oborevwori and signed on behalf of the two concerned groups by Olorogun Samuel Oghotomo, President of UYLA; Chief Augustine Atiti, Secretary General; Activist Ughere Blessed, President of UPU Youth Wing Worldwide; and Omiragua Ogheneji Oghenegweke, Secretary General of UPU Youth Wing Worldwide.
The aggrieved Urhobo youths emphasised that the letter was intended to draw the attention of the governor to the uncivilised action of the council chairman.
According to the aggrieved youth youths in the letter, dated 31st January 2024, they had been reliably informed that Dr Tidi deliberately destroyed the signpost at the historic Urhobo House, a symbol of their heritage and unity.
The letter reads, “The Urhobo House, located at Otovwodo town, Agbarha-Ame Kingdom, Warri South Local Government Area, has stood as a beacon of our culture and identity for decades, long before Dr. Tidi was born on 15th September 1980.
“We are deeply troubled by recent actions that appear to be aimed at erasing the Urhobo presence in Warri, especially in the aftermath of his loss in the PDP Primary of Warri South Constituency II House of Assembly election.
“Furthermore, we are concerned about reports that Dr Michael Tidi, the chairman of Warri South Local Government Council, boasted about his actions and expressed impunity while destroying the signpost.
“We urge His Excellency to intervene and appeal to Dr Michael Tidi and his Itsekiri associates to desist from their vindictive actions against the Urhobo people in Warri.
“Dr Tidi’s recent destructive acts, including the demolition of three signposts at Urhobo House in Okere-road, Agbarha-Ame Kingdom, and the reported manhandling of those who questioned his actions by soldiers allegedly in his employ, are deeply troubling. Additionally, we have received reports of his purported threat to further damage the Urhobo House.
“His reckless actions not only jeopardize the heritage and identity of the Urhobo people but also pose a risk of escalating ethnic tensions in the state.
“We urge His Excellency to compel Dr Tidi to reinstate the signposts within the next 14 days and to issue an apology to the UPU. If this does not occur, we will not hesitate to pursue all available legal avenues to ensure that Dr Tidi is held accountable for his actions.
“We trust in your commitment to justice and peace for all ethnic groups in the state, and we fervently hope for your swift and decisive action in this matter,” it noted.