ABSTRACT

Up to 1931, Ibi was included in a division organized along the Southern Nigerian lines of appointed warrant chiefs and gazetted native courts. It was reorganized in 1930-11 when Ibi became part of Oru, of the Orlu political division, which at the time included all the immediate neighbours of Ibi.2 It was also made the seat of one of the native courts - Uduoma - designed to serve the Oru administrative unit. There are no accessible provincial records to enable one to determine the impact of the native court on Ibi relationships with the wider community. However, there are some private records which go back to the court’s inception in the possession of a man regarded as the local historian and archivist. These reveal that membership of the court was representative of the community grouped under Oru (see Map 2). It can also be noted that from 1932, when formal sessions opened, till 1942, two Ibi indigenes served on it in the capacity of court member (1932–4) and court judge (1934–42), respectively.