… A tale of mysterious stream that turn into River.
Oboko River’ as oftenly called by the natives of Umueri, was a very small stream located at the outskirt of Mgbede village of Ivite Umueri.
It was alleged that during the ill fated Nigeria Biafra civil that took place in 1967- 1970, that the stream served as a beacon of defence, safeguarding lives of fleeing natives of many Omambala towns that include, Igbariam, Nando, Aguleri, Umueri, Nteje, Umunya and the sourroundings.
According to our source, who witnessed the war when the Federal forces captured Otuocha by overpowering the Biafra Battalion led by Col Robert Akonobi (then Lieutenant) at tail end of 1969 , from North and southward flanks of Nzam and Awkuzu respectively. The inhabitants of the mentioned communitiea fleed towards Mgbede while on hot pursuit from the invading Army.
According to the story, the stream suddenly overflowed and mysteriously turned into a very huge river, that prevented & frustrated the effort of Nigeria soldiers to cross over to capture Mgbede and Nneyi Umueri. This is while majority of Omambala natives , were said to cluster around Mgbede, Agu Ivite Umueri (present Cargo Airport) and Nneyi during and also till tthe end of the war.
Oral tradition also confirmed that similar thing occured during Igala and Igbo war of 16th century, that Oboko stood tall to ward off ravaging Igala warrior off Umueri soil. It was after that exploit that , the stream was turned inyo a deity by the surviving generation of the village.
Similar civil war story was also told in Nsugbe, as reasons behind the failure of Nigeria troops to capture the Omambala town. We gathered that each time they want to bomb the town, every place turned to water. This was major reasons while Nsugbe , Mgbede and Nneyi section of Umueri remain the only place that was unconquered during the Nigeria genocide, now called Civil war.
What did you hear about Oboko? Is the story real or a mere myth. Lets hear your view!