According to oral history, the great grandfathers of the people of Gegu Beki Abutu-eje migrated as an ethnic Egbura stock from the defunct Kwararafa Kingdom of the present day Taraba State, North East Nigeria. Following the disintegration of the Kingdom in the 15th century and chieftancy tussle with his half brother, Abutu Eje migrated from Wukari to Idah. While at Idah the family belongs to the famous Apa-akumabi ruling dynasty with the salutations of Ohietes for the males and Onyetes for the females, meaning heads and owners of the land respectively. These family clan was originally known for hunting, farming and great warriors who legendary were known as great archers. The great grandfathers of the founders of Gegu Beki, Agbedo, Ohimozi, Oduse and Omazagu, were Princes Okutachi Edogbanya Nagedu (Gyaku) and Edicha Nagedu(Ahoko) respectively. The direct father of these four brothers, that is Edicha(Ahoko), had two wives. The first wife was known as Princes Omachefu Aigebe Negedu who gave birth to Agbedo and Ohimozi. The second wife was known as Princess Unekwu -Ojo Nagedu who gave birth to a set of twins known as Odutse and Omazagu. Following the chieftancy tussles that engulfed Idah after the mid 16th century Idah/ Benin wars, the four brothers eventually migrated out of Idah with their families in search of a final settlement in the middle of 17th Century. The four brothers expedition was led by the eldest, Agbedo, through uplands and forests lasted for several months, but with a break to take some rest for few days at Gbobe. They however moved to first settled at Ogande at the bank of River Benue. While there, they witnessed unexplained and terrific flood that consumed some of their Children. These natural disasters made them moved out of this first settlement for a more habitable and conducive place of abode. They then moved northward through the rivers of Benue and Niger and finally settled at their present abode of Gegu Beki.
THE NEW SETTLEMENT AND THE NAME.
The new settlement of the people of Gegu Beki was made up of thick and thorny forest surrounding where the founders and their families lived. The geographical and environmental surrounding of the settlement with stream at its southern part, made it habitable for farming, hunting and protection against external invaders, as well as, for other domestic use. . The thick thorny forest had an entrance through it as a gate, which must constantly be closed and firmly locked every night. The settlement firstly derived it's name from the standing instructions of getting the gate always closed in the local dialect( IGA-GU), meaning close the gate. This original name was later corrupted in various ways as "IYGEGU", "IYGEGU -EBEKI"and now "GEGU - BEKI". This corruption was sequel to the rapid growth of the community with immigration of other tribes to join the original founders and settlers.
The four sons of Prince Edicha(Ahoko) constituted the following ruling houses in Gegu Beki:
-Agbedos -by Agbedo
-Oduses -by Oduse
-Omazagus -by -Omazagu
-Ondaki-Ukas -by Ohimozi. These four brothers having settled and ruled for sometimes, were later joined by one of their bossom friend who originally was from Budon to Odenyi and later Agyara before finally joining the people of Gegu Beki. As at today, the people of Gegu Beki have Five Ruling Houses( Agbedo, Oduse, Omazagu Ondaki -Uka and Andazi).
It is however worthy of note that the peace and tranquility witnessed today was not easy to achieve at the initial period of the settlement in the 17th century. Tributes to our Great Warriors such as Apkaaku, Oseze and Obareku who led the gallant Gegu Beki men noted for their mastery of archery to eventually repelled and subdued some military expansionists and terrorists who gave the people sleepless nights into retreat and oblivion. Gegu Beki has since then remained a peaceful community leading to its rapid urbanization and economic development.
The major occupations of the original founders of Gegu Beki community were farming, hunting, weaving, dyeing and blacksmithing.They were noted for weaving a kind of cloth known as UGBA which was used by both men and women for clothing. The women were also noted for weaving, wearing and trading in a kind of cloth called ITOKI which today is equivalent to the Yoruba ASO-OKE. That were the occupations inherited from their ancestors. Today, the people of Gegu Beki are joined by other tribes such as Bassas, Gbagyis, Yoruba, Hausa, Igbos, Igalas, Egbira -Opetes, Nupes, Bassa-nges and Jukuns. The People of Gegu Beki therefore have embraced modern businesses such as trading, petroleum dealership, hotel and hospitality businesses, transporters, contracts, and other entrepreneurial activities resulting to its rapid urbanization. It will be worthy of note that the people of Gegu Beki finally moved to the present site in 1958.
The succession to the stool of Ohinoyi Nyiwo of Gegu Beki was in the olden days by rotation/age amongst the five ruling houses. However, in the modern days, it is strictly by rotation.
The current Ohinoyi Nyiwo of Gegu Beki, HRM, Alhaji Mohammed Abba Alhassan is the 15th Reignig Monarch and 3rd from the Ondaki -uka ruling House.
THE LIST OF CHIEFS(OHINOYI-NYIWOS) THAT HAVE REIGNED IN GEGU BEKI TO DATE.
2. Oduse -Oduse RH
3. Omazagu - Omazagu RH
4.Adihene- Undaki uka RH
5. Asanya -Agbedo RH
6.Abutu - Oduse RH
7. Adaoweyi -Omazagu RH
8. Aguye-Agara -Andazi RH
10.Otutu(1923-1924) Andazi RH
11.Aniya(1924-1936) Ondaki uka RH
12. Usman Egu Tukura(1936-1976) Agbedo RH
13. Alhaji Salihu Musa (1977-2012). Oduse RH
14. Alhaji Shuaibu S. Isah(February 2013-June 2018). Omazagu RH, and
15.Alhaji Mohammed Abba Alhassan(12th April 2019 to date) Ondaki uka RH.
Furthermore on Monarchy,
it is important to note that ascension to the stool of Ohinoyi-Nyiwo of Gegu Beki has been reformed to make room for smooth and rancour free transition to the stool whenever it remains vacant due, perhaps, to passing away or abdication of the reigning Monarch.
The Kingdom has traditional ruling and rotating Titles which indicate whose ruling clan among the five ruling houses will take the next shot, if the stool of Ohinoyi -Nyiwo of Gegu Beki remains vacant.
The reform and resolution on the current rotation arrangement reached in Jananury 2016, which however became effective and operational on 12th April, 2019, is as follows :
-- Ondaki -Uka Ruling House: current reigning monarch of OHINOYI -NYIWO;
--Agbedo Ruling House: current rotating and ruling title holder of SHAABA;
-- Andazi Ruling House: current rotating and ruling title holder of OKPETU;
-- Odutse Ruling House: current rotating and ruling title holder of OMOKU; and
-- Omazagu Ruling House: current rotating and ruling title holder of NAKOZI.
These titles move upward upon the demise/abdication of a reigning Ohinoyi Nyiwo, culminating in a selection of a new Monarch by the Four King makers of the Kingdom. The Kingmakers hold the Titles of:
- Ogazaogbani and
After the selection and other traditional rites and processes, the candidate's name is submitted to appropriate authorities for ratification and eventual coronation.