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Excitement, As Warri Crowns New Olu Today




A JOYFUL atmosphere pervades Warri, Delta State as Prince Godfrey Abiloye Ikenwoli Emiko, will be formally installed as the 20th Olu of Warri today.

In fact, all roads in the state will lead to Ode-Itsekiri, the ancestral home of the Itsekiri people, where the coronation ceremony will take place.

Ode-Itsekiri town, also known as Big Warri, is wearing a new look. Almost all the roads in the riverine kingdom have been fixed, especially the main one leading from the jetty to the palace.

The ancestral palace at Ode-Itsrkiri and the one at Ajamimogha, Warri, were recently renovated.

The ancestral palace is wearing an immaculate mix of white and red colours with art pieces, totems and murals reflecting Itsekiri traditional heritage.

The Warri River front near, the Navy base where the coronation regatta will take place today, has been equally cleaned up. The waterfront, which had been taken over by waterweeds, has also been cleared. Besides, some disused middle-sized ships and barges, which used to line the waterfront, have been removed to provide a better view of the regatta.

“The boat regatta is historically symbolic in the coronation of the Olu. After the regatta, we will all take boats to Ode-Itsekiri where the new Olu will be coronated,” Yemi Emiko, brother to the Olu said.

Many Itsekiris living abroad and in different parts of Nigeria have arrived Warri to witness the epoch-making ceremony.

For instance, Chief Rita Lori Ogbebor, popular Itsekiri activist and women leader, has literally relocated to Warri from Lagos where she is based in order to be part of the burial of the deceased Olu of Warri, Ogiame Atuwatse II and the coronation of the new king.

Ogbebor enthused: “The new Olu is a man of the people; he understands the pains of the Itsekiri people. He is well groomed and we know his reign will be peaceful.”

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