Youths cutting across different kingdoms on Friday converged in Ogbe-Ijoh, headquarters of Warri South West Council for this years annual Ijay Unity Sensitization Conference.
The conference, which is an annual event spearheaded by Comrade Ellington Bakumor, Special Assistant to the Delta State Governor on Political Matters, centers on unifying Ijaws in the state.
The 2020 edition brought burning issues on insecurity vis-a-vis cultism, drug abuse, sea piracy, thuggery to limelight, attracting plausible reactions from firsthand witnesses and victims.
In his presentation paper, Bakumor took attendance on an history ride, making bare the tenets that drove the formation of cult organizations from around the world.
Citing founding fathers like Nobel Prize Laureate, Whole Soyinka and others, Bakumor stressed that cult groups initially throve on the ideology of freedom and emancipation from colonial oppression.
He lamented how present day cult activities have derailed from the original purpose they were forged upon, and have become a threat to a peaceful environment especially in Nigeria.
The Deputy Leader of the Egbesu Brotherhood asserted that there is a thin line between being a cult member and addict, noting that an average cultist is bound to abuse drugs.
He decried the rising rate of cult activities and other social vices in riverine communities and Ijaw nation in general, pointing that such activities were alien to the Ijaws and abominable before her traditional values.
He stated that while cultism has become an unavoidable routine in today’s society, the energy can be channeled towards productivity and even to the fight against injustice, oppression and marginalization.
The topic attracted reactions from youth leaders and stakeholders of Ijaw extraction across Delta state and beyond, who were present at the conference.
During the discussion session, thought leaders painted that idleness of mind and unavailability of proper orientation has given rise to these social vices, an earlier iteration by the convener.
Various speakers blamed the government, especially representatives of the Ijaws over their lackadaisical and nonchalant attitudes towards livelihood in the creeks.
They called for creation of engagement forums to prevent youths and teenagers from allowing idleness of mind lure them into becoming a menace to society.