Igbodo Kingdom in Ika Northeast local government area was a beehive of
activities between Saturday December 20 to Saturday December 27, 2014, as the
six villages of Anipeku, Idumuobior, Idumuozei, Anieyime, Ilabor and Ndodu
rolled out drums for the first of its kind celebration tagged “Igbodo Mass
Return Home” which featured homage to the traditional ruler, crusade, free
medical treatment, intervillage football competition, football competition,
choice, cultural dance and launching of fund for an ultra modern palace as well
as award and gala night.
HISTORY OF IGBODO KINGDOM
The people of Igbodo Kingdom are
predominantly into farming and agriculture, the reason why this agrarian
community is always referred to as the food basket of Delta State. The kingdom
was formed about the 15th century, under a special arrangement between six
migrants who decided to live together to defend themselves against external
aggression. Igbodo has its throne established at Anikpeku or Ikpeku village.
Each of the villages is led by council of Chiefs called Ogenes. Anikpeku as
presently constituted are the descendants of Ikpeku who was said to have
migrated from Benin, carry instruments of authority and leadership, Ada and
Ebeni. It was not surprising therefore that he became Eze Anikpeku (king of
Anikpeku) as he was known before and shortly after Igbodo was consecrated as a
town. As the town began to grow and following prevailing circumstances, the
people of Igbodo, conceded the kingship of the town to the Iyeke family of Anikpeku.
The kingdom of Igbodo is among the eleven clans that makes up the Ika nation
and can boast of many numerous sons and daughters who are making waves
socially, economically, politically and otherwise in every area of human
On this memorable occasion of
the celebration of the Igbodo Mass Return Home 2014, all the six villages were
well represented at the royal palace ground.
There coming together as a
people in pursuant of a common destiny of communal and individual advancement
is reaffirmation of their commitment to sustained growth and development of
their community. Speaking, in an address at the occasion, the chairman of the
planning committee for the week long occasion, Dr. Ndu Okonye disclosed that
the reason for the event is to serve as a big re-union of families and give
opportunities to knowing themselves the more. In his words, “it will also
afford us the opportunity of planning for the future while re-examining the
It will encourage self help efforts among the people
as well as attract the attention of the government and other development
interventionist agencies toward meeting the yearnings and aspirations of our
community. We intend achieving the objective of having every indigene of Igbodo
come home, know about Igbodo and then contribute towards the development of the
kingdom. We know that some of our children in the diaspora do not know about
their town. Their parents only told them that they come from Igbodo but any
thing about the town they do not know. With this programme, they will know more
about us, our time tested culture and our enduring way of life”.
The Obi Igbodo Kingdom, Obi
Ikechukwu Osedume the first, is the royal father of the events while the Iyase
of Igbodo (Traditional Prime Minister) Dr. Ifeanyi Unomah and the President
General of the community, Chief Peter Ozili Chiemeke were the Chief host.
Speaking an in address to the
mammoth gathering at the grand finale of the week long community programme the
traditional ruler charged his subjects to maintain a high degree of commitment
towards the growth and development of Igbodo community. In recognition of their
contributions to community development, 17 sons and daughters of the community
were honored with awards of excellence.
Those honored includes; the Director-General of BRACED
Commission, Ambassador Joe Keshi, a member of the Federal House of
Representatives for Ika Federal Constituency, Hon Victor Nwokolo, Mrs. Mary
Nken Nwaeke of the Nigeria Delta Development Commission, NDDC, Dr. (Mrs.)
Isioma Okobah of Delta Doctors in
Diaspora fame, immediate past National Chairman of IPMAN, Comrade Timothy Ogbu,
Mr. Chris Ubani, visionary inspirational leader, Austin Iyashere, public affairs management
consultant and Journalist, Chief Joe Obuseh, Prof Nduka Okoh, Mr. Chuks Ojenu,
and Chief Emmanuel Mbulu, business mogul and philanthropist.
The Igbodo monarch at the
ceremonies which also featured post humous awards to some indigenes admonished
the people to remain focus in the development of Igbodo saying that the future
holds a lot of promises for the community and its people.
of Igbodo kingdom, Dr. Ifeanyi Unomah, the president-general, Igbodo
Development Union, IDU, Chief Peter Chiemeke, both also recipients of the
meritorious awards and Chief Sunny Azuh, a U.S based indigene of the community
who gave a public lecture on carrier choice, harped on the need for more
selfless service and government presence in the community. Ambassador Joe Keshi
on his part expressed satisfaction with the turn out of Igbodo indigenes at the
events saying that there was nothing as good as to be honored and recognized by
your own people. Fielding questions from reporters after the occasion, the
chairman of the planning committee of the occasion Dr. Ndu Okonye stated, “the
event enabled many of our sons and daughters and well wishers around the world
to come home. Sometimes some of the persons outside home get scared, feeling
home is full of witches and wizards. The occasion was a huge success. We had
representations from all the continents of the world. Delegates from America
were able to give scholarship to about 12 secondary school students. We did
launching for the palace and market development. We have realized quite a
substantial amount of money in that regard. Altogether 34 living and non living
persons were honored. It was a great occasion. Our culture was activated. The
attendance beautiful. I estimate that about 3000 persons attended which in my
opinion is overwhelming”.
events attracted dignitaries across the nation including Hon Victor Nwokolo and
the father of the distinguished senator of the Federal Republic, Chief Ifeanyi
Arthur Okowa, the Obaseki of Igbodo Kingdom.
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