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History of Ebudin People

THE ORIGIN OF EBUDIN

Ebudin is the ancestral home-town of the children of a great warrior called Pa. Oboh, who was said to have been a member of the “Ozelua family” in Benin, who migrated from Benin (Edo) during the reign of Oba Ewuare, who had decreed a three (3) year ban on sexual intercourse in his kingdom. All those who could not keep up with this Oba’s decree, including ‘Ozelua’ and his junior brother ‘Okpamen’ had to flee Benin for places now known as “Esan” and “Ora” respectively.  Pa. Oboh, the founder of Ebudin, had to move to where he found a very peaceful place to live with his family which he named Ebudin. Some other people, who were said to have later migrated to join Pa. Oboh and his family, came from some other distant communities in Edo state and other States of Nigeria.

Not much can be said here of the family background of Pa. Oboh who founded Ebudin Town. However, oral tradition has it, and as it is well-known by the people of Ebudin, that Pa. Oboh had three sons to whom he named three of the now seven quarters in Ebudin after their names and gave them authority to administer and maintain peace, law and order in their various quarters. The names of the children are: Ogbe Oboh (the first son), Igun Oboh (the second son) and Oghale Oboh (the third son and the youngest).

In his quest for his own place of abode, Pa. Oboh was said to have travelled east-ward from Benin and during the course of his journey, originally meant to find a peaceful place to settle for his family, he met a man called “Odohun” at a place now known and called Ugbegun in Esan Central local Government area of the present Edo State. Geographically, Ugbegun is bounded in the east by Igueben, in the north by Uromi, in the west by Opoji and in the south by Irrua. It is also bounded in the south east by Ekpoma/Egoro-Na-Oka and Ebudin.

Pa. Oboh was said to have relayed the purpose of his sojourn to Pa. Odohun of Ugbegun, which specifically was that he was in search of a place to settle down with his family and get a fertile land for his farming activities, hence his movement into the thick forest. Pa. Oboh was also a great farmer. 

Pa. Odohun, decided to allow Pa. Oboh to rest in his home before he proceeded further into the thick forest. Pa. Oboh stayed with Pa. Odohun for some days before continuing on his sojourn into the unexplored forest. 

Given that Pa. Oboh and Pa. Odohun were both warriors in their own rights, it was pretty difficult for the two strong warriors to live together in the same community; hence it became expedient for Pa. Oboh to look for a place of his own. It was the wish of both of them to live together as they have become good friends over time, but they both also saw the folly of their having to stay together. After due appreciation of the true situation, that two warriors cannot live together in one community, Pa. Oboh decided to proceed further on his sojourn to find his own place. They both agreed that when Pa. Oboh has found a place, he would come back to let him (Pa. Odohun) know so as to visit him too. Pa. Oboh then told Pa. Odohun that, when he has found a place he will inform him by the shooting of gun; which should be a sign that he has found a good place. Pa. Oboh then continued further south of Ugbegun into the jungle carrying along his gun, some foodstuffs and drinkable water.

As he went on his journey, he continued to sample the soil, at intervals, to ascertain its level of fertility and how good it will be for his farming plans. After a long trek into the jungle, he came to a place with very many Palm trees, which gave the place a very cool atmosphere. The landscape was plain and was seen by him to be a good place to finally settle down as his home. He also inspected the soil texture and found it to be good for his farming plans. He looked at the whole area and saw very beautiful and fresh Palm trees which could be good for the tapping of Palm wine and also get palm oil for both his family use and trading to neighbouring communities. He then concluded that the place was good enough to be used as his place of abode. Just as he was considering the viability of the place for his settlement, he saw a big antelope under one of the palm trees and he then carried his gun, aimed at it and shut it dead. He then cleared round the place and built a hut there. He then carried the antelope he has just killed to Pa. Odohun’s place; he gave the antelope to him as gift and a sign that where he has gotten was good for all purposes of human habitation including farming, hunting and other commercial considerations. He then asked his friend if he heard the sound of his gun when he shot and killed the antelope. Pa. Odohun, in his reply, said that he heard the gun shot very faintly, indicating that the gun was shot in a far distance from his place. 

Narrating his experience to his friend, Pa. Oboh told him that, where he has secured for his final place of abode, is a “place full of Palm trees” (in Esan language “Ebudin”),  almost looking like a ‘Palm tree plantation’ and that when it was raining, he was not drenched because the palm fronds ensured his shelter from the rain. As he was taking his rest under the palm trees, he saw the antelope, just under one of the several palm trees, and it was not difficult for him to kill with only one gun shot. He told him that he also came across a stream, called ‘Arierie’ now known and called river ‘Oghu’. This river is where he will always get water for his family’s use when he eventually settles there. He also told Pa. Odohun that the soil texture was well manured and will be good for his farming works. He told him also that he has decided to settle in that place. Pa. Odohun was happy for him and thanked his ancestors for his friend’s successful sojourn. 

After a few days stay with Pa. Odohun at Ugbegun, Pa. Oboh then went back to Ora community, where his family lived and brought them to the place he has just founded, which he subsequently named “Ebudin” (meaning: A place full of Palm trees). On his return journey, he visited Pa. Odohun and thanked him for being his host during his search for his place of abode. Even after he has fully settled with his family in his newly found place- Ebudin, Pa. Oboh continued to pay homage to Odohun in strict demonstration of his humility and true love for his neighbours. Both Pa. Oboh and Pa. Odohun became best of friends till death came their ways.

In his settlement, and as earlier mentioned, Pa. Oboh had three sons namely, Ogbe, Igun and Oghale, listed in their order of seniority respectively. All the children and their off-springs were very enterprising and were quick at meeting up with most things that define a man. They were good farmers, palm-wine tappers and also good in crafts. It was therefore not difficult for them to be noticed and their industrious nature soon spread to all the neighbouring communities. These endeared them to indigenes of other communities, some of whom then chose to relocate to Ebudin and were allowed to settle there too. Such other communities are what is now known and called Ohoghe quarter, Iguizi quarter, Arua quarter, Ididigba quarter and Obhiagor quarter (also known as Eko Imonlamen). 

Given the humble and noble nature of Pa. Oboh, he gave full rights of citizenship also to all other migrants as those of his sons. He, however, ensured that basic rights to his own family entitlements were not abdicated to other immigrants. He made sure his true children were given due recognition in all general gathering of the entire Ebudin community. 

 

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  • Guest (Odia Ehiabh Preciousi)

    i am so much glad to see this page to know more on how my community came about, much appreciation.

  • I specially want to thank God for the inspiration given to the author of this history. It will definitely assist generations to know how their community came to being. It is my hope that future generation of indigenous Ebudin people will continue to build on this history for posterity sake.

    It is a laudable write-up. God bless the writer

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