OBIOR (Ika Weekly) – This yearâ€™s Ogbanigbe (Iwaji) New Yam Festival of the people of Obior in Aniocha North Local Government Area of Delta State took place on Saturday 27th October 2007.
The celebration attracted indigenes both at home and abroad as well as well-wishers from neighbouring communities. Different dance groups were displayed in different centres of the streets.
The Traditional Monarch of the Community, His Royal Majesty Kingsley Ogochukwu Ofuokwu III, (JP) danced round the streets with his subjects and converged in a particular centre chosen by the community.
Answering questions from news men, the Obior Monarch gave brief history of the annual festival.
According to him, in the ancient days of the warrior called “Ogiso” in Benin Kingdom, Chima and his wife comfort who were the forefather and mother ran away from Benin territory for their safety and settled in a hid-out called “Ukpai” as a result of the crisis, in Benin.
According to history, they have four children, Obior, Ezi, Onitsha-Ugbo and Isele-Uku, while other parts of Aniocha broke out from Isugbo and Onitsha-Ugbo.
He disclosed that when peace was finally restored in the kingdom, Chima, comfort his wife and their children were not affected by the crisis.
Obi kingsley pointed out that the essence of “Ogbanigbe/Iwaji” festival is to offer thanksgiving to God for protecting those ancestors through which their community now exist, and for the bumper harvest in the yearly farm work.
In a related development, an Onitsha base businessman, Mr. Chinedu Chisomde, a native of Idumuje-Ugboko in Aniocha North Local Government Area and one Mr. Sunday Nwajei of Obior confirmed that this yearâ€™s Ogbanigbe festival is unique in the sense that it is very peaceful and the response was very encouraging.
They prayed that God should continue to assist the community in terms of peace, progress and all the good things of life.