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stories and histories EWU HISTORY WRITTEN FOR OVER 40 YEARS BY INSTONY KRISTOFFERSON TO BE PUBLISHED SOON

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Ewu History written for over 40 years by Instony Kristofferson to be published soon
Instony Oyailome who writes with the pen name Instony Kristofferson is a native of Ewu in Esan Central LGA of Edo State. He has dedicated his life to the preservation of Esan language and literature. His work so far include the History of Ewu, a book he has been writing for over 4 decades. Other of his titles include Esan Dictionary. He is currently translating the Holy Bible to Esan Language. It has been his life passion to see that Esan Language our most prided heritage is preserved for the next generation. Instony is the founder of Esan language Class (Online platform) for the preservation, promotion and teaching of Esan Language.
In this encounter with Esan News Magazine, this creative writer bears his mind on his effort to attract development to Ewu and Esan, his travails with traditional authorities over his works on History and about the Football Team he organized in the 80s that went to the state league.
Excerpts
ENM: please tell us your full names
Instony: I am Instony Kristofferson Odeba Oyailomê, a son of Rev Jeremiah Êidenêhi and Margaret Ôbhafuôso, both of blessed memory. I was born Ôdeba Oyailomê, as time progresses, I became known as Anthony Ōbhafuōso and finally, now addressed as "Instony Kristofferson (pen-name); otherwise, INSTONY KRISTOFFERSON I am an author, freelance Cyrillic script playwright, historian, actor, and a poet; that has written countless books. Some of which are used in higher institutions of learning.
ENM: Tell us about the books you have written
Instony: I have a natural flair for writing, this I started in my primary school days till date. I sold a lot of stories, books, movie scripts to publishers. Most already in print with outright sales.
Not until I met my last publisher, Justice Jeco, in Benin City that I approached, that encouraged me to stop selling my books. And indeed made arrangements for this book "The New Approaches to Educational Management" to be published, co-authored with lecturers in the University.
I have written a lot of Esan books: Easy to read Readers, History of my very Family, Agholo Dynasty of Idunwele EWU; translation of t bhe Holy Bible to Easy to go read Esan Language; Esan Dictionary, among the lots.
The only so available Esan Dictionary was stemmed from the plagiarization of the manuscript I offered for correction during my good days with some elders I felt they could be of assistance.
My lawyer then, P.A. Erōmôsêle from Uromi, gave me a challenge to forget what has been published an come out with a better more accepted Esan Dictionary. This I have been working on.
Once I have a sponsor, publisher willing to spur me on, it will take no much time to burst out of the pipeline, so to say.
All these books are kept in view for lack of a good permanent paying job coupled with encouragement from many Esan people I had approached.
ENM: what is the source of your motivation for doing this tedious writing work?
Instony: The motivating factor remains my passion for the ESAN LANGUAGE. I traversed Esan land, Owan, Etsakor, Urhobo, Ijaw, Nkwani, I say the difference. Esan people are always afraid to talk of their language, their history, culture and if not for Igbabonelimin nothing remains in Esan. Ilo had gone extinct. All the places I traced to, I picks a pack from each. I started developing my dictionary, words and meanings, history till my parents became tired of my inquisitiveness. Hence, in 1973-1974, my father transfer the palava to elders at home, then with Pa Akhigbe Oyakhilome, as our Ōdiōnwele in Agholo Family, residing at Eko-Ewu. I would ride or even trekked to Eko-Ewu from Ididigba Usugbenu to ensure I gathered information from my elders. At times I would travel to Ehanlen-Ewu via Idunwele, then a gory to behold especially around the Idunwele, a no go area due to gully erosion.
Oh Prof. Dr. Ambrose Alli, God must allow you rest as to reincarnate back to Esan land if is possible. My grandmother, Azêdê Iriah, of the Erema DYNASTY married at Ehanlên-Oniha would take me round the elders "wey sabi" Writing is tedious, I almost lost my sight due to over use of candles and its fume. Thank God, I can now use glasses, thanks to technology. All these were to ensure my language never goes extinct. To buttress, I never grew up in mostly like others may have thought, my parents as cleric hadly had a stay in a particular station for more that two farming seasons. My dad was always on the move just because he chooses to be a building pastor for Assemblies of God Mission. He may only be allowed a few time to round off a specific project and then moved to either rejuvenate a "killed" Church or moved to start a fresh station. "His reward is in heaven" this I know very well for the life he live was glorious even till my both parents death is an assurance that God is with them.
Our generations now and unborn needs Esan Language, hence not just now I had been involved in a lot for Esan's progress. Hardly any Esan person that crosses my way that do not hate the way I exposed our identity as Esanemôndu, I am proud to belong to Esan at any where I found myself, Esanewolo.
ESM: tell us about your recent project The Esan Language Class
Recently, I opened Esan Language Institute platform on WatsApp (+2348101368902) to enable people learn from it the knowledge of Esan Language. It has been encouraging and from the globe despite the LOCKDOWN we had gotten a sizeable persons actually under going the study with us.
ENM: We heard you also played a role in the sitting of Flour Mill in Ewu, what part did you play?
Instony: The journey of the feed and flour mill in EWU started with me from 1983-1989. I was instrumental to her being sited in EWU land in the first case. From U.P.N. meeting at Warri Club then I used persons to get its approval to be in EWU. Later moved to Ubierumu in Uromi, I gave my uncle LJK Oyakhilome all clues for which it got reversed despite the SMG was then an Êilu person as I was. My work in SCAN construction and Andrez construdium was occasioned for the fact that I was from upper authority. My father was never a politician, sycophant, or well known. If not, EWU people fought for my removal from my being in some meetings. The more they tried, Mr Boha, the Ag Commercial will always tell me to be patient. Even after the construction, and I insisted through publication that General Buhari should not come for commissioning, and under the Idunwele Youths Association with Bro. Moses Oboh as home base Chairman, they almost killed some of us. If not that good enough Solomon Daudu stood by us, and the father saw his don among those he intended to slay, I mean during Pa. Ibhafidon era as Idunwele Ôdiōnwele. Francis Ubene, and others stood their ground against the edion's decisions to kill some of us not having the audacity to say a word at ikolo then.
Lots to be said will definitely be in the print, the "Salvaged Martyr" story of my life.
ENM: tell us about the football team you organized in the 80s that went to the state league
Instony: The Esan cum EWU Local Teams was occasioned by our visit to Me Kaluzar, then with Bendel Insurance, myself and Mr Boha, the Ag Commercial of Bffm. We brought Me Kaluzar into Bffm because of my request to have a standing football team for the Bffm. Though, when he came, he was made the Marketing Manager. I raised the team, all things put in place, with now Prof. Joe Oboh, alias "Kpako" as the football captain. Do anyone say he is not a Prof? As far as I am concerned he is even more than that. He is a person I am well pleased. If there is any higher adjective to qualify him I would have. A basket of footballing, "Ômōnōnmōnsé".
Tournament were organized and EWU Local Team always carry the trophy, no way but clear cut performances. Orêrê, Friday among other always handy to disgraced seasoned teams like Êkpên Bombers of Iruêkpên, Oluwa Glass, Ivue, Aruê, Igarrage football clubs from Uromi alike experienced their defeats from Kpako, Orêrê and others in the EWU Local Team. Not even the BffM football team was spared. The Benin Teams among other saw their defeats also.
The fall came still with our chiefs Anetor Isu and D. Y. Dania wanting me to make the team selection based on village character, not minding who can play well or not.
When I refused this village character, for which each village had to be represented. Petitions started flying against Instony Kristofferson, to the BffM management started through Mr Kaula, then very close to our sister Christy.
They were adviced to take the matter to Boundary Road office in Benin City. Then was when the PRO called and adviced me to save my life and leave the football for the chiefs to play.
This happened before, I went to Sapele Life Flour Mill to understudy the loading process, under BffM sponsorship. My coming back, gave birth to the loading franchisee, or "Loaders' Carriers" ask persons like Nwosu living at Idunwele, he could attest to some of these claims. I planned most things in their house then living at Rev G.O. Oyakhilome's opposite Assemblies of God where I did most of the incubations.
ENM: what were responsible for these many travails?
Instony: I think most of these attacks came as a result of my quest to pen down the history of EWU then. As I came to EWU finally in 1984, I swing into action since I was then working. I visited elders, interview them till when some of them saw I was at the helm of the BffM issue, they quickly wanted to sycophantly buy favour into gaining employment via the royalties or the Ibhieramên.
Quite novel to village settings, some bent to see that whatever I says is twisted to rope me into a more serious problem. The Zaiki, I mean Isêsêlê classified me an enemy to his throne which in reality was never. Just for the fact that he came to be aware that Pa Bob Ikhêloa came to see me at Flour Mills.
And I had the courage to mistakenly asked some of his faithful from either Ihênwên or Êguale questions relating to the throne.
I was summoned to Ukpêdê, for questioning. That was the Genesis of my travels in the flour mills. Before I could say Jack Robbisin, letter from his Highness came for my change whereas non of EWU people knew how my job came except my uncle, LJO Oyakhilome, with whom an "Ibâ" was acquainted with all the development from the onset.
To be candid I was severally called to the palace and warned to desist from delving into the history of Ewu and that I could not be more educated that Dr Xto Okojie. However, my zeal and passion to correct the mistakes inflicted on the nothing but the true history of EWU could not allow me to forget it.
Mr PY Enankhimion on one occasion advised me to save my head because he stumbled on me with my antagonists at the palace. He sent his son then working under me to call me to his house. Himself and the elder brother, the father of Hon Peter Enakhimion asked me to please save my head.
I did remembered, I visited Bob Ikhêloa's house, the following day I was given a suspension letter by Dania and to go and see His highness at the end of the day it turned out to be Chief Anetor Isu but my refusal brewed a lot of problems between me and their Barrister whose house closely shaved by the agent of denudation at Eguale/
Ehanlên, I think that was Barrier Itua or so, as well as Chief GU Ibhaze from Ekpoma, Self acclaimed Rev JE Ehireme who till I left them could not pay for his shares then.
The EWU history is on-going, and by God's grace "ahuoisê", soonest it will hit the stand come the next EWU Book Fair in November. According to my would-be publishers, arrangements are on ground to occasion it's publication soon. I strongly trust them and I know that will keep to their words. Kudos to them!
ENM: what do you think could be responsible for the continous close down of Ewu Flour Mill and what can be done to make it up?
Instony: The Prime Feeds and Flour Mills is undergoing a kind of rejuvenation. Reliably, it would never have a breakdown once started. You see, a lot were done to destroy that facility by the Auchi and Benin people then at the helm of affairs. Perpetuators removed people who could have stand in for EWU and make outsiders held key position of dubious tendencies. I, Hon Peter Oboh, Benjamin Oboh among other erected the silo cum machinery tower. Even the one at Sapele the same thing. How possible that even after my leaving for Shell, joined its Supernumerary Police, my name was given to Leventis Farms, Agenebode, whose silo got damaged by storm. I had to apply for a "one month leave pass" to re-erect the silo for them before I went to resume back to shell work.
The Prime Flour Mills is God given project to my brother, and no power or gate of hell can stalemate it's workability. It is just the technical teams that are still at work for now. Sit up and expect her resumption soonest.
The General Manager is neither resting his oars in enduring that once it kick-start no looking back
He single handedly made ADP EDO State what it was prior to his retirement. His exit made a lot to ADP. So, he is capable to let the Prime Mills roar back to power and production soonest. No cause for alarm. God is in control.
ENM: what do you think can be done to reposition Esan Land for rapid Development?
Instony: Rapid social economic development in Esan left much to be desired. One our mindset. Let us have good intentions and allow our better to lead the way to progress.
You don't just buy salt or soap because your relative made it. No. You buy the best to give you result.
The last time I visited EWU much was on one Mr Peter Aichie for the fact that despite all their antics the young man was posed to retain his position in the motor pack.
He was reported to Ehanlên elders. The stores, park among other things could have looked upon to make our market the best and despite the first and oldest market in the history of Esan Land.
Make available power supply to the populace. We're closed to the power grids, yet no one can canvass for more and workable transformers. During the World Bank intervention on the gully erosion, I was with the MAP, because of my contributions the young man from Uromi insisted I had to work with them.
Even Mutab, on his surfacing saw me as an intruder or someone coming to beg food from Eguale people. Though I refused to be distracted, whether the Ehanlên and Eguale people even other villages to work on that project.
Thank God for whom He is, my life is still spared and it was the School founding that brought me into Esan then. And I left immediately.
"Akugbe aki ahu" if no good management in our mindset, in nearby future we may have a divided house. Same thing applicable to all Esan
Build more civic centers, educational places, tourism as in your case now gives me joy when I saw it. During my parents' burials I knew how much I spent for friends to have comfort. Today, if I have a movie production, I can easily accommodate my actors in a place of haven.
ENM: what is on take on the proposed Ewu Institute of Management Studies?
Instony: The school is or would be a private institution. Still on its founding stage for lack of interested stakeholders despite I held two meetings to that effect.
I had worked under other formations capable of setting up higher school with little income. I was to have a center at Our Ladies of Lourds, Uromi, at Ehanlên Ewu, Benin City, etc at a go. It would be a satellite campus mobile school. It had been evolved before Government asked us to get our registration done.
I worked with the owner of the today Eastern Polytechnics, Port Harcourt, Rivers State. We floated distance programmes. If I could get reasonable people who are willing to invest into education we would have it done at Ease.
If at all the need arises, about 200 persons with one mind towards investment could raise this amount say about 150,000.
Alternatively, cut into halfway to Balance up latter. That is the secret. My friend only suggested to his people in Enugu State, and today stands the Eastern Polytechnics.
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Author: adex3g 10 months
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