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History/Origin of Agbor

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27/10/2017

Agbor is the biggest and the most cosmopolitan city of the lka nation. The historic origin of Agbor kingdom as we stated earlier has different angles. Some writers trace the origin of Agbor to the reign of Oba Ewedo of Benin. According to this perspective - the Oba had twin sons named Edo and Ogugunagbon. Both were subjected to a kind of lucky dip in order to pick a successor to Oba Ewedo. Ogugunagbon was unlucky to choose the wrong box and had to leave Benin with throng of his supporters to a new location leading to his founding of Agbor. However, Prince Adams Gbenoba in his book "The History and Culture of Agbor (Agbon) Kingdom" agrees with the Benin origin but adds another angle:
"Without doubt, beyond myths and legends by way of oral tradition, no accounts can be more authentic than the neutral, historical accounts of colonial travelers, explorers and administrators. Mr. J. Macrae-Simpson on page 5 of his "1935 INTELLIGENCE REPORT ON THE AGBOR CLAN IN THE AGBOR DISTRICT' recorded thus: "Talbet, on page 168 of Volume 1 of Southern Nigeria", quotes an extract from the chronicle of the Dutch historian-traveller Henrik Nyendael, which seems to be a description of the exodus from Benin of the founder of Agbor Clan: "After this barbarity, the King aIso found a third manthat stood on hisway, who, being universally beloved,was timely warned ...and accordingly took his flight, accompanied by three-fourths of the inhabitants of the town. The King caused the fugitives to be pursued.. Then the fugitives, thoroughly incensed and flushed, came directly to the City, which they plundered and pillaged, sparing no place but the King's Court; after which he returned, but incessantly continued to rob the inhabitants of Great Benin, till at last a peace was concluded ... He lives two or three days' journey from Benin, where he keeps at Agbor as great a Court and State as the King...".Talbet goes on to say that of the two families that left Benin at this time (shortly before Nyandael's visit in 1702), one settled at Agbor while the other went to Obior, another Clan in the Agbor District. Of the same Obior family came also the ancestors of Onitsha-Mili (the Onitsha Waterside of today). It is a tradition of the Obior people, and indeed of most of the Clans between them and the Niger, and also of Onitsha itself, that their tribe was founded by Chima a refugee from Benin City...The story is that Chima?, when driven from Benin, traveled eastwards towards the Niger, which he eventually crossed, and settled in Onitsha. There he begat nine children, of which eight died, leaving him with a daughter called Owuwu. Believing that the loss of his children was caused by witchcraft, he left Onitsha and returning to Agbor, long existing country, settled at Osarra (present day Ozanogogo- previously called Ozarra- in Agbor Kingdom), where one of the quarters to this day bears the name of his sole remaining child, Owuwu.

Similarly Onyekpeze F. A, a foremost writer of lka history in his book ·An outline of the Culture & Socio-Economic Interest of the Ika Nation emphasizes this trend of the Benin factor in the formation of Agbor: One factor is that the place names of Agbor and Its outlying settlements are Bini words. Another factor which buttresses Agbor claim to Bini origin is that the villages in Agbor Town viz, lghogbe, Olihe, Ogbeisere, Ohumere, Ehaikpen, Ogbesogban and Ogbeiwaise, etc. are a replica of the villages in Benin City. In addition, even the lhogbes of Agbor like the lghogbes of Benin City, claim lfe origin and their ancestors are believed to have accompanied Prince Oromiyan from lfeto Benin to establish the present monarchy.

The Agbor titleship, Uzaman, lhaime, Odlonwere and Ehaivbo, and its system of government are similar to those of Benin. Furthermore, inAgbor's oral tradition, the king of Agborwas popularly known as Ogle Agbon, meaning the ruler of the whole world. The question which arises is, when did the title of the ruler of Agbor change from Ogle to Obi of Agbor? One can therefore acceptthe Bini oral tradition thatthe rulers of lka now called Obis were Ogies as other rulers or Chiefs or Oba's representatives in Benin Division. It may be that the rulers of lka, especially the ruler of Agbor regarded Ogle as belittling and wanted a more prestigious title, especially after successfully severing political relationship with Benin following the deportation of Oba Ovoramwen in 1898.

Despite these different views Agbor continues to wax stronger with a rich cultura Iheritage.

1. Ime-Obizone comprising of:
(i) Ogbemudein 
(ii) lhaikpen 
(iii) lghogbe 
(iv) Ohumere 
(v) Ogbe-lsere 
(vi) Ogbe-lsogban 
(vii) Obi-Oiihe 
(viii Oruru 
(ix) ldumu Agbamise. 
(x) Ogbe-Ase (lwase).

2. Ihuiyase zone comprising of:
(i) Ewuru
(ii) Agbor-Nta
(iii) Aliokpu
(iv) Alihami
(v) Alihagu I& II
(vi) Oki
(vii) Alifekede
(viii) Aliagwai
(ix) ldumu-Oza

3.1hu-Ozomor zone
(i) Alizomor
(ii) Omumu
(iii) Alisimie ldumu ltenei
(iv) Oza-Nogogo
(v) Owuwu
(vi) Uvbere
(vii) Alisor
(viii) Alibido
(ix) Aliebi
(x) ldumuenwan
(xi) Alileha
(xii) ldumnleha

4. Orogodo zone comprising of:
(i) GRAI & II
(ii) Orogodo Urban or Boji Boji-Agbor
(iii) Emuhu

5. Ekuku-Agbor zone comprising of:
(iv) Ekuku-Agbor
(v) Alidinma
(vi) Obi lduhon
(vii) ObiAgbor
It is pertinent to point here three of these villages- Alisor, Alilehan and Ozanogogo speak Oza language of the edo people and notthe lka language.

Government of Agbor

The monarchy rules the Agbor kingdom.The Dein is the king of Agbor kingdom. He is the supreme authority for the whole entire kingdom. Dein was the first ruler of Agbor .He reigned from 1270 to 1307 with his headquarters at Agbor-nta. However, the headquarters of the Agbor Kingdom has moved to different locations for a couple of times in order to maintain a modicum of impregnability and invincibility of the kingdom. The Dein was the commander in chief of the Agbor kingdom. Agbor warriors feared no foe. Their exploits are legendary and they maintained their territories with an iron fist. The Agbor kingdom founded outposts towns far away from the kingdom to protect itself from foreign invasions.

Dynasty till Date

1. Dein 1270 to 1307
2. Owuwu 1307 to 1333
3. Akina 1333 to 1460
4. Agho 1460 to 1518
5. Oguade 1518 to 1594
6. Ahisama 1598 to 1630
7. Oseh 1630 to 1650
8. Oje-1650 to 1658
9. Adigwe 1698 to 1740
10. Modu 1740 to 1795
11. Obanor 1795 to 1885
12. Odin 1885 to 1890
13. Gbenoba 1890 to 1911
14. Agborbu 1914 to 1929
15. Obika 1935 to 1967
16. lkenchuku 1968 to 1979
17. Kiagboekuzi 1979 till date
.

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