HISTORY OF OBIARUKU (EKPEMILI) PEOPLE OF UKWUANI
well grown town extending 18 kilometers north of the River Ethiope and a predominant trade zone found in the southern part of Nigeria. It shares borders to thenorth with the Benin division (fondly called the Idus by Ukwuani), on the south by her inherent brothers (the Akashiada clan), on the west by her neighboring Edoid settlers (theUrhobos) and the south east by fellow Ukwuani’s, Umukwata.The geographical position of Obiaruku, places the town at a focal point of trade betweenher boundary counterparts, the Akashiadas, the Urhobos, the Ikas and her former heritagethe Idus. The town is a growing rural centre and head quarters of the Ukwuani localgovernment council area the last in three local government areas given to the secondlargest ethnicity in delta state of Nigeria.Obiaruku settlers are inherent farmers, yams and cassava are cultivated for subsistenceand export, and the men are both farmers and fishermen. Other variety of cash anddomestic crops are cultivated such as the melon, Pumpkin leaves, local beans, Maize andother crops. The women also assist their husbands and have the rights to trade producethat are meant for cash income at the market (Afia ogbe). During the early 20
century,Obiaruku was a dominant commercial region for palm produces, Rubber and timber hence the location of the African Hardwood Company just across the River Ethiope inOkuzu quarters of the town during the mid term of the 20
century.At the time of the arrival of the colonial masters Obiaruku was already a fully integratedtown and reports have it that there were five recognized quarters at the time:1Ogbe Obiaruku (Ogbe aka and Ogbe ofu )2Umu Edede3Okuzu ( Obodoagu )4Obi Ugbe5Umu Esume.