Prince Toney Eweka aka Ogivie I is the custodian of the Ogivie Shrine in Benin City, the Edo State capital. In this interview with OJIEVA EHIOSUN, he bares his mind on a number of issues. Excerpts…
Recently, some white people from Germany, France and Poland visited your shrine to have a feel of the mystery water and other happenings. How do you feel about it?
I am very happy that people are beginning to appreciate the work of Ogivie. For those whitemen from three countries to buy tickets and come to Ewotubu in Benin City to see Ogivie I shows that whatever is happening in this place is the handiwork of God Almighty. I am in charge of this place but I cannot explain what the mystery behind the happenings here are. When the white people called me to say that they were interested in coming to see Ogivie I and have a feel of the mysterious things happening in my place, I did not hesitate. When they came and saw things themselves especially during the vigil when things started coming out from the mystery water porch at the centre of my sitting room, they were speechless.
Seeing Ogivie in white attire addressing them, giving solutions to their problems without paying a kobo, they confessed that they had never seen such a thing in their lives. The difference between this and other shrines is very clear; Ogivie does not ask you for anything in return, it reveals to you the source of your problems and proffer solutions.
Each time you communicate with people you talk about Enikaros. What is Enikaro in Benin and its traditional implication?
Firstly, I want you to know that this is a special place created by God to solve human problems. Ogivie is a place where Enikaros all over the world gather to deliberate on issues concerning the entire world. Benin as you know, is a place with very rich cultural heritage, with a very strong tradition. We do not compromise our culture for any reason. Benin remains the home of culture and tradition; that is why you can see different races coming to the city to see artefacts.
In Benin language, Enikaro means the elders of the land, the gods of the land, the ancestral fathers of this great kingdom. They come in form of spirit beings and commune with the living on very important matters. But one thing is that evil people are not allowed in this place. Ogivie only deals with people that have good intentions towards their neighbours.
World decisions concerning world matters are taken here. For example, the 2019 election issues had been decided by the elders, I’m not going to speak on it until they instruct me to. If care is not taken it might swallow many important dignitaries. I won’t say more than that.
You will be travelling to Europe soon with Ogivie Cultural Troupe, what is the motive behind it?
Ogivie as you know is involved in many things. I have a cultural troupe that is involved in the display of our rich culture. We travel to places on invitation, so, very soon we would be on our way to Finland to showcase the works of Ogivie to the world. People that witnessed the last annual Ogivie Festival went back home with different kinds of blessings. Sick persons that came washed themselves in the mystery water and got healed.
I have never seen anywhere in the world where anointing oil, chaplets, creams of various types are given out from the porch of mystery water with instructions on how to use them written on them. Like I said before, I cannot explain what I’m experiencing here, people need to come and see for themselves.
Oba Ewuare II has placed curses on human traffickers in Edo State. What is your take on it?
That is a great thing that His Royal Majesty has done. It a right step in the right direction. The Benin monarch has done very well, in fact I must confess that Oba Ewuare II is a big blessing to the people of Benin and the entire nation. With his one and half year on the throne, he has demonstrated great leadership. Edo people are happy for being blessed with such a dynamic king. Edo people must obey him and at the same time join hands with him to ensure that we eradicate evil from our society and make Edo State a better place for all.
I also want to use this opportunity to appeal to our people to try as much as possible to accommodate one another, we should not discriminate among one another, the crisis between farmers and Fulani herdsmen should be settled amicably. Oba has said that everybody should live in peace and harmony with one another, he is our royal father and a custodian of our culture; it is our duty to keep to his instruction and live together as one indivisible entity.
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