Elder Statesman, Chief Edwin Clark

By Ovie Okpare

The people of Kiagbodo community in Burutu Local Government Area of Delta State have reacted to the attack by Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) on elder statesman and Ijaw National Leader, Chief Edwin Clark over alleged demolition of a mosque in the community.

MURIC had earlier in the week berated Chief Clark for allegedly spearheading an anti-Muslim campaign in his Kiagbodo community and being the sponsor of the attack on an uncompleted mosque building in the community.

But the community reacting to MURIC attack on Chief Clark, who doubled as the most senior man in the town, said the allegation by the Muslim group was far from being true.

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In a statement signed by the community chairman, Mr. Jonathan Layefa, exonerated the Ijaw leader from the issues.

Here is the full text of the statement below:


Our attention has been drawn to a news article by an on-line media, Daily Post attacking our revered Community Elder and national Leader. It is unfortunate, defamatory, disrespectful and wicked to say the least, for the MURIC hiding under the guise of Fulani herdsmen to accuse the highly respected National Elder statesman, Chief (DR.) E. K. Clark for spear-heading an anti-Muslim campaign in his Community (Kiagbodo).

It is pertinent to set the record straight so as not to allow MURIC to mislead the reading public on this issue. Prof Ishaq Akintola of MURIC is either ignorant of the fact or he is being mischievous, in calling a dog a bad name in order to kill it, he attempted to, in collaboration with his cohorts, tarnish the image of the revered elder statesman by publishing this libelous, defamatory article; but, however, failed to achieve his aim.

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No amount of blackmail and mudslinging will affect the already established reputation of Chief E.K. Clark.

We wish to state the true facts of the issue. One Mallam Abubakar Korokeme in connivance with Alhaji Isah Ejirigho Clark (younger brother to Chief E.K. Clark, who are the only two Muslims bent on building a mosque in Kiagbodo Town where they are not even residents; Mallam Abubakar resides in Warri, while Alhaji Isah Clark resides in Ughelli and Lagos. There is no practicing Muslim who resides in Kiagbodo Community today. Hence the move to build a Mosque in a Community where no Muslim resides is seen as a sinister motive or plan by these two persons (Mallam Abubakar Korokeme and AlhajiIsah Clark).

Emissaries were also sent from the neighbouring Kingdom of Olomu that the presence of a Mosque in Kiagbodo could attract the presence of the killer-herdsmen to the peaceful Communities and Kingdoms of Ngbilebri-Mein and Olomu.

Women and Youths of Kiagbodo Community have protested repeatedly against the building of a Mosque in the area for fear of the infiltration of the killer-herdsmen who are presently ravaging the Country, to the peaceful Kiagbodo Community. The Mosque will be an excellent avenue for them to come and settle down in the Community, which may spell doom for the inhabitants of the Community.

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It is clear from the outburst of MURIC, that they are the sponsors of the building of the Mosque in Kiagbodo Community because the Mallam Abubakar Korokeme that is claiming to be building a residential building together with the Mosque is a driver with a private Company. He is married with 6 children and 9 grandchildren, and may not be earning up to #50,000 monthly. Where did he get the money to be able to put up such a gigantic structure?

Surely the sponsors of Mallam Abubakar Korokeme do not mean well for the people of Kiagbodo Community.

From the foregoing, it can be said that the people of Kiagbodo do not need the instruction of Chief E.K. Clark before they can take measures to protect themselves and guard against anything that can cause chaos in their Community.

It is therefore foolhardy, ignoble and malicious for MURIC to put the purported demolition of a Mosque under construction in the Community/Kingdom of Kiagbodo and Ngbilebiri-Mien, respectively on the person of Chief E. K. Clark

The Chairman of Burutu Local Government Council (LGC), invited the Regent of the Ngbilebri-Mein Kingdom, Chief AkpaseleSigana and the Chairman of Kiagbodo Community, Mr. Jonathan Layefa, a retired Principal together with Alhaji Isah Clark and Mallam Abubakar Korokeme, whose real name is AvwurhiKorekeme Akpokirise, who has acquired the name Abubakar, and who is a cousin of Chief E.K. Clark, at a Meeting held at the head-quarters of the Local Government Council in Burutu, with DSS officials in the Council in attendance.

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The Council Chairman in that Meeting advised Mallam Abubakar Korokeme to halt construction work pending when Chief E.K. Clark who is currently in Abuja return home, and use his wealth of experience to look into the matter.

The Local Government Chairman asked both AlhajiIsah Clark and MallamAbubakarKorekeme a pertinent question, whether there were other Muslims residing in Kiagbodo Community and their answer was No!

The Chairman of the Council told AlhajiIsah Clark that he is aware that he (AlhajiIsah Clark) resides in Ughelli. It was at this juncture that the he (Council Chairman) asked MallamAbubakarKorokeme to stop the construction of the building of the Mosque, as it was threatening the peace of the Kiagbodo Community.   

Chief E.K. Clark is not anti-Islam as claimed by MURIC. He has a 47 years old Muslim son who lives in Warri, called AlhajiGaruba Clark whose mother is from Mubi in Adamawa State.

MallamAbaubakarKorokeme and AlhajiIsah Clark are free to worship or practice any religion of their choice, and there was no time they were castigated by the elderststesman for being Muslims.

Public order and peace in a Community should take priority over individual interest.

Chief E.K. Clark, in his position as the oldest man in the community and leader, will not impose the building of the Mosque on the people, when all the women and men, the Chairman of the Community, and the Regent, protested rigorously that they did not want a Mosque in their village where there no Muslims reside.

MallamAbubakarKorokeme is an illiterate, who had earlier lived with his cousin AlhajiIsah Clark, where he converted him into Islam religion.

Mosque and Church are places of worship, who are the Muslims in Kiagbodo Community to worship in the Mosque?

None of these two AlhajiIsah Clark and MallamAbubakarKorokeme has a house in Kiagbodo Community or stays/lives in Kiagbodo Community.

The man, MallamAbaubakarKorokeme has no means to build a mosque, who then is sponsoring him and for what purpose?


Mr. Jonathan Layefa

Chairman, Kiagbodo Community

Burutu LGA, Delta State.


  1. The truth of the matter is still very much untold by the people of Kiagbodo. It is foolhardy to claim that mallam Avwurikorekeme(Ijaw-Urhobo) who works as a driver can’t afford to build a house and a mosque but people like Tompolo and Co suddenly became billionaires and you applauded them without thinking about what they can/can’t afford.
    Freedom of religion is still very much intact in our constitution. Kiagbodo and EK Clark should stop being too primitive, Deltans are not this stupid!

    • Shut up your mouth there. If you want to practice Islam, please get out of Kiagbodo. We don’t need any form of Islamic centers in our dear town. All over the world, Islam in itself is a window for terrorism. We don’t need it please. Let them find another location. Islam is not welcome. Thank you.


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