Olu of Warri visits 105-yr-old Delta monarch, says date of birth symbolic

The Olu of Warri, Ogiame Atuwatse III, on Friday, visited the oldest reigning monarch in Africa, the Owhorode of Olomu Kingdom, Richard Layieguen, Ovie Ogoni-Oghoro I, on his 105th birthday anniversary.

The centenarian, who was born in 1917, marked his 105th birthday on Thursday, January 20, 2022, at his palace in Oloumu, Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta State with fanfare.

Speaking at the palace of the centenarian monarch on Friday, Atuwatse III, whose late father, Atuwatse II, was also a very close friend of the celebrant and Olomu kingdom, said he came to continue where his father stopped.

“We’ve come to celebrate with you on your birthday. We’ve received tremendous hospitality from our urhobo brothers since we arrived here.

“I’m happy for what has been presented to us today. My words won’t be many, but heavy.

“At 120, the Bible says Moses’ eyes were not dimmed. You’re carrying this age well. 105 means you were born in 1917 soon after Nigeria was amalgamated.

“I think it’s symbolic that God has permitted me to see and sit down close to such a person to call a brother.

“For you to have seen Nigeria in her infant stage and you’re still here, I want to say that you’ve broken the seal that restricted Nigeria.

“And I believe wholeheartedly because we don’t have any monarch that’s close in terms of age.

“God has ensured that you have seen the beginning of the greatness of this country.

“It’s significant that your eyes saw it and I’m reminded of the Bible man (Zachariah) whose eyes saw Christ and requested to depart.

“I’m not saying you’re going soon. This land will be known for fruitfulness, duration, quality. Today is a new day for the kingdom.

“You’ll enjoy a new level of support from your subjects,” the 21st Olu of Warri, who ascended his fathers’ throne on August 21, 2021, prayed.

Responding, the centenarian monarch, Ovie Ogoni-Oghoro, who was elated at the Olu’s visit, described the Warri Kingdom monarch as the perfect chip of the old block.

“I’m happy that you’re here as a continuation of that relationship that I had with your father.

“I feel like it’s Ogiame Atuwatse II that is sitting beside me. His way of expression and other things show this.

“I want to make it loud and clear to the Itsekiri nation that the relationship with us will continue.

“Your reign will be for long, in peace, your kingdom will be God’s kingdom. You’ll see the wonders of God. You as my son you’ll live and reign longer than me,” the Olomu king prayed.

Highlights of the visitation, which witnessed the heavy presence of chiefs from both kingdoms, was the breaking of traditional kolanuts and a cultural display by an Urhobo troupe.


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