As the curtains close on the year 2023, it has also brought to the fore, Okere Community, founded in 1497 by Ekpenede, a Bini warrior who was sent after Ginuwa, but was encumbered by the Warri River and settled in Okere. The community shall keep watch over the palace of the Olu of Warri for the next quarter after taking up the Ghigho Aghofen duties from Ikpisan Community on the 16th of December 2023.
Led by Chief Felix Esisi, the Olare-Aja of Okere, the community danced in distinct yet spectacular fashion, and this has been one of many reasons she has been endeared to tourists the world over for more than 5 centuries. Going beyond the literal meaning of Okere – its small – Okere community doles out big. It is the oldest community in Warri metropolis and is host to one of the oldest markets in Delta state.
It also has produced countless individuals of national and international repute. In its long and proud history, the community also manages some existential challenges predicated on urbanization. Among the myriad challenges is the thinning of the Okere River, which is a natural drain for all of Warri metropolis. The developmental strides along the banks of the river and its tributaries now causes flooding in some parts during the rainy season.
Okere was warmly welcomed into the palace grounds by His Majesty, Ogiame Atuwatse III, CFR, who acknowledged the place of pride she occupies as an integral part of Warri kingdom. The community was eulogized for their unalloyed loyalty to the throne as their challenges were highlighted to be attended during the watch period.
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