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IMA OSISI CEREMONY, ONICHA UGBO – By Chief Ken Iwelumo

HRM takes time to explain the culture and traditions of Onicha Ugbo in line with the Ima Osisi event for the forth-coming Ine (New Yam Festival).

HRM takes time to explain the culture and traditions of Onicha Ugbo in line with the Ima Osisi event for the forth-coming Ine (New Yam Festival).

A key component of Onicha Ugbo’s annual Ine (New Yam/Iwaji;Traditional New Year) Festival, the Ima Osisi (which literally means “striking the staff”) ceremony in which HRM Agbogidi Obi Victor Chukwumalieze 1, the Obi of Onicha Ugbo leads his Diokpas (heads of the various communities and villages), Onotu Chiefs (High Chiefs), Ndi Olinzeles (Palace Chiefs), Ikpala Ani and Ozo title holders (Noblemen) on a 20 kilometer march across the length and breadth of the Kingdom of Onicha Ugbo.

Leading Chiefs and the Omu (Queen Mother) assemble at the old Ogwa in the old 1950s Obi Okobi's Palace.

Leading Chiefs and the Omu (Queen Mother) assemble at the old Ogwa in the old 1950s Obi Okobi’s Palace.

 

Traditional songs are sung amid rhythmic striking of staff on the ground. In pre Christian times, the King would visit all the shrines in the Kingdom offering prayers to the various deities. In these Christian times, the King visits canopys set up by the Diokpas of the Ogbes and a few Idumus. Amid chants and striking of staff on the ground, the King would offer prayers and blessings at strategic places and at each community asking for a fantastic New Year, blessings, prosperity and a great harvest in the coming Year. As he marches and prays, he throws the symbolic Nzu (chalk) powder as a sign of peace.

His Royal Majesty, Agbogidi Obi Victor Chukwumalieze 1 JP (Jerusalem Pilgrim), the Obi of Onicha Ugbo, takes a brief but well deserved rest at Diokpa Chief Godwin Omu's canopy at Umuolo Village.

His Royal Majesty, Agbogidi Obi Victor Chukwumalieze 1 JP (Jerusalem Pilgrim), the Obi of Onicha Ugbo, takes a brief but well deserved rest at Diokpa Chief Godwin Omu’s canopy at Umuolo Village.

At each canopy, the King is offered prayer liquors (Schnapps), beverages and Kolanuts. In return the King offers prayers and blessings to the community and marches off to the next community followed by an increasingly large crowd.

A group photo before the 20 kilometer march around the Kingdom.

A group photo before the 20 kilometer march around the Kingdom.

This year’s main Ine events of the paying of homage to the King by the High Chiefs and popular Ine Efifie will take place on Saturday September 03, 2016 at Ezechime Palace grounds. 12 Noon prompt.

Greetings: Akaine Ahoine. Happy New Year. Response: Ahondu enwe ogwu. May the years of life never end.

Chief Ken Iwelumo (Tallest on 2nd left) With Chief (Sir) (Hon) (Barr) Ibe Nwawolo, Chi Obi of Onicha Ugbo and Obior. Mr Azubuike Okocha and Mr Felix Mekwunye.

Chief Ken Iwelumo (Tallest on 2nd left) With Chief (Sir) (Hon) (Barr) Ibe Nwawolo, Chi Obi of Onicha Ugbo and Obior. Mr Azubuike Okocha and Mr Felix Mekwunye.

Below are some photos of the royal procession as HRM Agbogidi Obi Victor Chukwumalieze 1, the Obi of Onicha Ugbo leads his Diokpas (heads of the various communities and villages), Onotu Chiefs (High Chiefs), Ndi Olinzeles (Palace Chiefs), Ikpala Ani and Ozo title holders (Noblemen) on a 20 kilometer march across the length and breadth of the Kingdom of Onicha Ugbo.

Chief Iwelumo is the Alibo (Ambassador Plenipotentiary) of Onicha-Ugbo 

 

With a photo of his Grandfather Obi (King) Okobi 1, as a backdrop, HRM shows off an Adaka (ancient hand canon) part of the Royal collection.

With a photo of his Grandfather Obi (King) Okobi 1, as a backdrop, HRM shows off an Adaka (ancient hand canon) part of the Royal collection.

  From left to right: Chief (Prince) Augustine Osode, the Ozoma of Onicha Ugbo and head of the Palace Chiefs. Mr Onekamse Kachikwu representing High Chief (Dr) Ibe Emmanuel Kachikwu, the Odogwu of Onicha Ugbo. Omu Anwuli M.Ed, the Queen Mother of Onicha Ugbo. Chief Okafor Williams Amafuibe, the Odafe of Onicha Ugbo.


From left to right: Chief (Prince) Augustine Osode, the Ozoma of Onicha Ugbo and head of the Palace Chiefs. Mr Onekamse Kachikwu representing High Chief (Dr) Ibe Emmanuel Kachikwu, the Odogwu of Onicha Ugbo. Omu Anwuli M.Ed, the Queen Mother of Onicha Ugbo. Chief Okafor Williams Amafuibe, the Odafe of Onicha Ugbo.

  The Iyase of Onicha Ugbo, High Chief Festus Mafiana.


The Iyase of Onicha Ugbo, High Chief Festus Mafiana.

The Isama of Onicha Ugbo, High Chief Michael Diji.

The Isama of Onicha Ugbo, High Chief Michael Diji.

The Queen Mother of Onicha Ugbo, Omu Anwuli Nkenchor in the procession

The Queen Mother of Onicha Ugbo, Omu Anwuli Nkenchor in the procession

  From left: Iyase Agba High Chief Alex Ujumba Odih-Okoh. Eze of Agba, Eze Chris Elue. Onishe Agba, Mr Shieli Monyei.


From left: Iyase Agba High Chief Alex Ujumba Odih-Okoh. Eze of Agba, Eze Chris Elue. Onishe Agba, Mr Shieli Monyei.

 Joy and fun. Very impressive Osisi staff.

Joy and fun. Very impressive Osisi staff.

  Mr Felix Mekwunye accidentally broke his precious Osisi staff.


Mr Felix Mekwunye accidentally broke his precious Osisi staff.

The growing crowd heads towards Ishiekpe and Idumu Alio.

The growing crowd heads towards Ishiekpe and Idumu Alio.

Engr Solomon Abor (in blue shirt), the tech power behind Onicha Ugbo's quest for electricity takes a break from installing the brand new Ishiekpe I (Idumu Ogbele/Umuoshomi/Garage/Idumu Alio/Uzo Isse Layout) transformer to get into the mix of things.

Engr Solomon Abor (in blue shirt), the tech power behind Onicha Ugbo’s quest for electricity takes a break from installing the brand new Ishiekpe I (Idumu Ogbele/Umuoshomi/Garage/Idumu Alio/Uzo Isse Layout) transformer to get into the mix of things.

 

  Elders from Ogbeaku await the arrival of the King beside their canopy.


Elders from Ogbeaku await the arrival of the King beside their canopy.

  The Obi and Iyase are joined by the Onotu Chief (War Chief) in charge of Ogbe Obi Village, the Isama of Onicha Ugbo, High Chief Michael Diji (center).


The Obi and Iyase are joined by the Onotu Chief (War Chief) in charge of Ogbe Obi Village, the Isama of Onicha Ugbo, High Chief Michael Diji (center).

The flutist Mr Emeka (left with an Elephant tusk flute) from Obomkpa provided traditional music. Here the procession is headed to Idumugbe quarters and Abuano.

The flutist Mr Emeka (left with an Elephant tusk flute) from Obomkpa provided traditional music. Here the procession is headed to Idumugbe quarters and Abuano.

The procession heads towards Idumu Oseh area after a brief march into Idumu Awo.

The procession heads towards Idumu Oseh area after a brief march into Idumu Awo.

The Royal procession Marching back from Idumudiagbor junction with a rapidly growing crowd.

The Royal procession Marching back from Idumudiagbor junction with a rapidly growing crowd.

Chanting songs while striking their staff on the ground in unison. This group of young Noblemen is lead by Mr Onyinye Dibie at center.

Chanting songs while striking their staff on the ground in unison. This group of young Noblemen is lead by Mr Onyinye Dibie at center.

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Poet, Author, Journalist, Social Critic, Culture Activist, Progressive, Humane...

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