The Obi's Palace

The obi (king) of Idemuje Ugboko is the paramount ruler in this ancient kingdom and the custodian of the rich history and cultural heritage of the people. One of such heritage is the over 800 years old ancestral palace, home of the obi. This unique architecture of ancient perfection is listed in the Delta state tourism book as number one kingdom to see, comparable to no other palace in the state.

The obi’s palace is a replica of the oba of Benin’s palace in terms of the setting; of course this is because the Idumuje Ugboko kingdom has its ancestral root from the ancient Benin kingdom. The palace has several court yards called “Ezi obohi”, sitting areas called “ogwa” numerous meeting rooms and the obi’s sitting room and personal residence.

The exterior of the palace is quite spacious, beautifully landscaped with relics of hundreds of years sitting majestically. One is welcomed to the palace by a set of beautiful sculptures of the obi and his council of chiefs in a meeting like setting.

A tour of the obi’s palace is a life time experience that takes you through a journey of 800 hundred years and more. It is better experienced.

The people of present day Idumuje Ugboko are very peaceful, accommodating and friendly like his ancestors. This is because they have lived peacefully with their neighbours; they have never been at any known war except the Ekumeku way against the white slave merchants in the 18th century. Idumuje Ugboko is an elitist society, many of the communities forefathers had early western education from the whites which have rubbed off on subsequent generations.

One thing that is peculiar with the people regardless of educational background is the coming back home of the indigenes to settle when they retire from the usual city works. They are always comfortable at home without fear, because of their tradition of peace and safety. “We take pride in living within our community, because we are all the same, we grew up together, whether we went to school or not, we believe in togetherness, it is a beautiful place to be”.

Idumuje Ugboko town is made up of four villages, Ogbe obi, Ogbe ofu, Atuma and Onicha uku. One very unique feature common in the town is the lack of fence noticeable from the beginning to the end of the town, because stealing is an abomination.

The Obi (King) of Idumuje has always had his chiefs in council; these are not ceremonial chiefs, they are serious traditional chiefs with great roles to play in the administration of the kingdom.

The king and the chiefs in council have more regards in dispensing justice with Agbanigbe instead of the police or court, the people regard the system as much more acceptable to them. Meanwhile Agbanigbe festival precedes the new yam festival, this are the two most popular festivals that attracts indigenes from within and outside the country back home. Ugboko is a very organized society, with just about 30,000 people in population. The adults are very responsible with an organized and focused youth age grades.

“We are a model for most places, because what we do can be emulated in bigger societies, that is why I still hold firmly in the believe that within our political democratic system, there should be room for house of chiefs, it is something that if introduced they will be held responsible for misdeeds within their communities” quoting one of the chiefs in council…we are a good people from a great kingdom.