“My people, my people.” Okomoko Inkumbe spoke with a loud voice that was characteristic of him.
He saw himself as a god. He spoke like a god, his voice was the voice of the gods and when he danced, it was like a man possessed by Zuzuma, the god of arrogance. A charismatic ruler that had the power of oratory on his tongue.
“Etieokwe erieokwe, Etieokwe erieokwe.” The people hailed him.
That has been the form of greeting between him and the people of OhashieriLand since he became the custodian of the Ikenga.
“Today, I’m standing before you as the mouthpiece of the gods. The words I’m speaking to you today are the words of the gods.” He paused.
He looked around to make sure the people were paying attention. He was such a man that always wants to be the center of attention. He continued.
“The man I am choosing to bear the Ikenga after me is the one the gods have also chosen. Pay no attention to those coming to contest, their Hope is hopeless. They are after your harvests, to sell your crops and pillage your lands. They’re wasting their time because, ụbọchị amụrụ dike na mba ka amụrụ ibe ya. And their iberibe has reached the height of iberiberism.” He paused.
The people started to murmur. They didn’t quite like him, but they had to come because they were given a jar of ude-aki.
“My people, my people.” He raised the Ikenga up.
“Etieokwe erieokwe, Etieokwe erieokwe.” The people responded.
“I present to you the next custodian of the Ikenga. The man who will lead you to a safe destination. He is no other than my trusted servant, Mbaugwu.”
e raised Mbaugwu’s hand as he waited for the people’s reaction. He knew it wouldn’t be easy for the people to accept, but he was a god unto himself and his wish was final. Who could protect all the palm trees he had taken from people, all the lands he forcefully took and all the labourers he refused to pay better than Mbaugwu? Nobody.
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Mbaugwu was a blind, deaf and dumb good man that only saw, heard and spoke through the eyes, ears and mouth of Okomoko. So indirectly, his authority would be an extension of Okomoko’s authority. Okomoko knew this and Mbaugwu, though he pretended, knew too. The people themselves weren’t ignorant of such reality. The people actually love Mbaugwu, but the mask he wears on his face, bearing the image of Okomoko, scares them away. So, the sins of Okomoko will become his nemesis.
But to be handed over the Ikenga, which was the symbol of authority in OhashieriLand, he had to face other contenders who were determined to stop a dynasty in the making.
The Battle Line Was Drawn.
To be continued….Douglas House!
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AUTHOR’S DISCLAIMER: This is a fictional reality. All the characters are fictitious