Grandpa died long before I was born and grandma died in 2006, leaving two sons and three daughters who are all married. In Igboland the family's inheritance is shared amongst the male children of the family, except in cases where the female child is still at home, yet to get married. My dad was the little brother, and he died in 2017 without sharing the property between him and his senior brother. Now as his first child and son, I am required by tradition to stand in for my dad in all matters in the community. A huge responsibility I must say.
A year before dad's death, we moved relocated family house in our hometown after we lost most of the family's assets during dads 6 years of illness. Since dads death, my mum has been bitter and somewhat maltreated by my Uncle and wife. They team up against mum on every little issue. And they quarrel a lot, and it's always about lands and other family assets. Mum is not given an equal right to what we all own. She calls often with complaints. And it hurts me to see her hurt after all she has been through.
Also, my uncle has been allegedly selling some of the lands for his personal needs. Without letting us know and when mum finds out, they end up quarrelling. So my resolve to push for the properties to be shared, so everyone can do with his share whatever he wishes, and no one will raise an eyebrow.
After years of unnecessarily postponing the deal date. We finally agreed on it this festive period when most if not all the family members will be available and present to witness the sharing process. The agreed date is today. We called some relatives as mediators and witnesses.
As is tradition, we started the process with prayer and breaking of kola nut. The meeting started well, and we were able to list all the family's properties. With the way it started, we thought the process would go smoothly, but that didn't happen. Midway, there was disagreement. My uncle wanted to keep some lands to himself, for some reasons I am yet to grasp.
For the lands, the sharing process should be:
If my uncles as the first son takes first, my dad will take second and then take again before my uncle takes another. But my uncle was trying to force one of the bad lands on us and also mum pointed out that one of the family's land was not on the list. And truly one land was omitted intentionally by my uncle, he wrote the list. When asked, he claimed that land is now his, that it can't be shared. Why?
Mum was angered by his audacity and my uncle's wife didn't help the matter. She "poured fuel into a burning fire" quarrel started, the mediators got angry and decided to adjourn the sharing process. Now hours of deliberation has been wasted. We are yet to angry on a new date, and I have to travel to my place of residence tomorrow, so I can resume work. I will have to meet my uncle so we can agree on a new date, and it has to be during the holidays, probably Easter or Christmas.
Though I am not rich, and my earnings barely meet my responsibilities and needs, I don't really care much about those lands. I'm doing this for mom's happiness and peace of mind. I hope to someday make enough money and buy her as much land as possible.
She is my big queen and then I have my little angel, my one and only sister. Their happiness is all I work for. I hope to be in a position to provide their needs.
Thanks for reading.