THE head of Nnewi tradition (Okpala Nnewi), Chiagozie Osunkwo has marked the 2020 Ilomuo festival.
The event which held on Eke-ukwu day according to the Igbo traditional calendar was remarkable as an annual event for the remembrance of the fathers and forefathers which is similar to the recognition of all saints and soul’s day of the Catholic Church.
Speaking to the press, Okpala Nnewi, Chiagozie Osunkwo (Akaji ofor Nnewi) who said that Ilo Mmuo was a way of appreciating the good deeds of the forefathers for their good legacy worthy of emulation, noted that in the past days the community lives in peace and experience less crime and the people lived with integrity, homely for posterity.
“In those days everybody works hard to be recognised and respected, avoiding any case that will destabilise their ethics and custom.”
The celebration which attracted dignitaries from all walks of life such as the Nigeria Police Force, Civil Defence, the military, lawyers, doctors, businessmen, politicians was done in a low key in accordance to the COVID-19 rules and regulation.
Okpala Nnewi said that ilo muo is usually marked eight days before the four towns of Nnewi takes their turn to celebrate starting from Otolo, Uruagu, Umudim and Nnewichi.
He further stated that on the special day of the event, ‘Umudiana’ come to pay homage while the married daughters bring kola nuts, food stuffs cooked and uncooked for their various fathers’ blessing and there is always a lot to be consumed with numbers of slaughtered cows and goats for merriment.
Okpala Nnewi maintained that it is the absence of the tradition that brought crisis in Igbo land because where there is love, it brings progress. He urged the people to emulate good ways of life, living upright and giving honour to their fathers.
Chief Osunkwo thanked the state governor, Chief Willlie Obiano for upholding the Igbo culture and tradition, saying that Ilo muo should be a tradition to be embraced and celebrated for the forefathers.
Speaking also at the occasion, Ejike Daniels who said that there is revival of culture going on in Igbo land, noting that Okpala Nnewi is the custodian of Nnewi.
He explained that most youths are facing cultural conflicts due to overwhelming influence of the social media and urged them to find out the real Igbo values and link up to it.
The event attracted dignitaries like; Chairman, Izu kara Nnewi, Ugochukwu Udemezue, Chief Anthony Nwokedife, Chief Cyprian Okolo among others.
Masquerade and cultural dance were around to entertain the guests.