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Reinventing The Wheel Of Culture

…As Princess Sekibo Becomes Etem-Ba

It was set to be, as nobles, politicians, friends and well-wishers defied the threat of tempest to witness the evolution of culture with the inauguration of a seat by the chief and people of Etem war-canoe house for Princess Asime George Sekibo,  the wife of the paramount chief, Senator George Thompson Sekibo, CON, DSSRS.

It was unprecedented in the annals of Wakirike tradtion as women were not given any special seat of recognition no matter the quality of their contribution to their respective houses or communities. 

Speaking at the event, the chief of Etem Omu Aru of Ogu Kingdom, Senator George Thompson Sekibo said, the occasion was the first of it’s kind in the war-canoe house and indeed in Ogu Kingdom as no Alabota (chief’s wife) has been so recognised and given this mark of honour.

He said, “no King ascends the throne without a wife and no Chief by the Constitution of the Ogu Divisional Council of Chiefs can be installed to head any Chiefdom in Ogu Kingdom without a wife that is legally married by Yaa marriage. This suggests the importance of the  Chief’s wife as a partner in the management of the Chiefdom especially when receiving dignitaries and colleague Chiefs into their home, the management of the women of the Chiefdom and many more.”

According to him,”these important roles which the wife of the Chief performs are not given the status they deserved, which has made our Alaputa (the wives of our chiefs) directionless with less respect they deserve, even as they come to the Wari meeting with no special chair to sit as they struggle among other women of the chiefdom to grab seats for themselves. This is same even in our community during our town hall meetings of the Kingdom. For us in Etem Omu-aru, this obsolete practice can no longer be practiced”.

The Etem wai-alabo said, we are aware that elsewhere in Nigeria, when an Eze is being installed, he is installed alongside with the wife, giving a distinction of honour to the Eze’s wife among the womenfolk. Some may say it is not part of our culture, custom and tradition, and that it has not been done before. Everything we know today in our way of living started one day and then practiced till date.

The chief who is also the senator representing Rivers East senatorial District asked: “What is culture, custom and tradition? The dictionary.com defines Culture as “the ideas customs and social behaviour of a particular people or society”.

Then the word custom is defined as ” a traditional and widely accepted way of behaving or doing something that is specific to a particular society, place or time”. The third word tradition is defined as “the transmission of custom or beliefs from generation to generation, or fact of being passed on in this way or a long established custom or belief that has been on from one generation to another”.

The three words can jointly been seen as a  people’s practice of a way of life, their behaviour, and beliefs that they have held for long and transmitted from generation to generation. This means that such culture, customs and tradition had their beginnings and evolves and refined with time.

For instance, what were the dressing pattern of the Wakirike people before the advent of the western civilisation and up till 100 years ago. Did our Kings wear gold crowns as it is done today? Did our Chiefs wear the popular ‘don’ as it is worn today? Just recently, our chiefs are putting beads (ikilari) on their necks, meanwhile that was seen as Igbo pattern of dressing some 20 years ago. Ajibulu head gear for chiefs was more popular with the Kalabari and Ibani people but today these have become part of our culture and custom.

My mother told me that young women (teenagers) wore no pants in their days as there were no pants to wear. Parents became uncomfortable with the pubic hairs of their daughters and this made some kind of coverings for them to cover their pubic areas. That was our way of life but today we have moved far beyond that practice as we have learnt better ways of living.

I take the pains to give these explanations not because I am making a particular case for the Etem Omu-aru is inventing but because we don not want our detractors to completely misunderstand us. The inauguration of a special chair for the Alabota is new but is it not befitting that the wife of the Chief of the Chiefdom should be given the status she deserves? The answer is an outright NO.

Declaration: Today  the Etem Omu-aru has decided to inaugurate the Etem-Ba seat and inaugurate the first Etem-Ba. It shall be a custom and tradition of this Chiefdom that after installing the Chief of the Chiefdom by the Ogu divisional council of Chiefs or whatever name it may be called, the seat of the Alabota shall be inaugurated same day or within seven days, and the wife of the chief be so addressed as Etem-Ba second or third as the case me be.

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CultureFor The Records

Thank You For The Successful Installation Of Sir Dr. Abiye Sekibo As Chief Achin III

The Chairman, Executives and entire members of Achin Omuaru Wari, Koniju Town, Okrika; and the Chairman and members of the installation planning committee wish to extend sincere thanks to all those who by way of physical presence, gifts, prayers, phone calls and other diverse ways contributed to the success of the installation of Sir Dr Abiye Samuel Precious Sekibo as the Chief and Head of the Achin Omuaru Wari.

In particular, we profoundly thank HIS EXCELLENCY, THE EXECUTIVE GOVERNOR OF RIVERS STATE, CHIEF (BARR) NYESOM EZEWON WIKE, CON, GSSRS, PoS Africa for his immense contribution and physical presence at the occasion. Your Excellency, you lifted us, and we thank you!

In like manner, we thank the Deputy Governor of Rivers State, HER EXCELLENCY, DAME DR IPALIBO HARRY-BANIGO, HIS EXCELLENCY, ALHAJI ATIKU ABUBAKAR GCON, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT OF NIGERIA, THEIR EXCELLENCIES, CHIEF SIR DR PETER & JUSTICE MARY ODILI, FORMER GOVERNOR AND FIRST LADY OF RIVERS STATE, HIS EXCELLENCY, BARRISTER CELESTINE OMEHIA, FORMER GOVERNOR OF RIVERS STATE, PRINCE UCHE SECONDUS, NATIONAL CHAIRMAN OF  PEOPLES DEMOCRATIC PARTY.

We also thank the Royal Fathers who graced the occasion.

HRM KING DANDISON DOUGLAS JAJA, JEKI V, AMANYANABO OF OPOBO KINGDOM and CHAIRMAN, RIVERS STATE TRADITIONAL RULERS COUNCIL, HRM KING ALFRED SEMENITARI ABAM Ph.D. ADO IX, AMANYANABO OF OKRIKA, HIS MAJESTY KING EDWARD ASIMINI WILLIAM DAPPA PEPPLE (III) PEREKULE XI JP, CON, AMANYANABO OF GRAND BONNY, HIS MAJESTY, KING (AMB) SIR LESLIE NYEBUCHI EKE Ph.D JP DCF, EZE OHA EVO (III) OF EVO KINGDOM, HRM KING ATEKE MICHAEL TOM, AMANYANABO OF ANCIENT OKOCHIRI KINGDOM, SEKURO OF NIGER DELTA, HRM KING EMMANUEL TAMUNOIGBEINBIA IBIAGOLIKA OBUDIBO, IKWO V, AMANYANABO OF OGOLOMA, HRM KING DISRAEL GBOBO BOBMAUEL (II) EKINEYE GBOBO, OWUKORI XI OF ABONNEMA, HRM EZE BARR. ONYEKACHI K. AMAONWU, JP EZE EBERI UGO IX OF ANCIENT EBERI OMUMA (EZE OMUMA), HRH KING AIRCOMMODORE T.E.O OGUBE (RTD), JP DSS FDC PSC MSc MBA FCNA OGUBE 1 PEREKUNE KINGOLI 1, AMANYANABO OF KIRIKE, HRM KING NELSON ATUBO OPUTIBEYA XI, AMANYANABO OF KONIJU TOWN, OKRIKA 

We are also grateful to OKRIKA DIVISIONAL COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, KONIJU COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, TUBONIJU COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, OGU-BOLO DIVISIONAL COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, ABULOMA COUNCIL OF CHIEFS BOLO COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, ELE COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, OGOLOMA  COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, IBAKA COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, OGBOGBO COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, KALA OGOLOMA COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, NKORO COUNCIL OF CHIEFS, OBUMTORU COUNCIL OF CHIEFS.

We are further specially grateful to:

CHIEF SENATOR GEORGE THOMPSON SEKIBO CON, DSSRS, JP,  IGO ALABO OF OGU KINGDOM, GENERAL KENNETH MINIMAH, FORMER CHIEF OF ARMY STAFF, DR DAKUKU PETERSIDE, DIRECTOR GENERAL NIMASA, CHIEF & MRS O.C.J. OKOCHA, SAN, CHIEF FELIX OBUAH, CHAIRMAN, PDP, RIVERS STATE,  RT. HON. TUNDE AND DAME TUMINI AKOGUN, FORMER MAJORITY LEADER, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,

RT. HON. AUSTIN OPARA, FORMER DEPUTY SPEAKER, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

MS ANNKIO BRIGGS, CHECKLORD & MEMBERS, CHECKMATES CLUB OKRIKA, PRESIDENT & MEMBERS, RIVBOND CLUB PORT HARCOURT, PRESIDENT & MEMBERS OF PORT HARCOURT CLUB, PH CLUB GOLF SECTION EXECUTIVE & MEMBERS, SENATOR LEE MAEBA, MR OLOGUN AKOGUN, CHIEF TUBONIMI ARINYEDOKIARI, H.E. MR & MRS DESMOND AKAWOR BOYS COMPANY OF NIGERIA, UNIVERSITY OF LAGOS ALUMNI, OKRIKA GRAMMAR SCHOOL OLD BOYS ASSOCIATION, MEN’S AND WOMEN’S FELLOWSHIP, WESLEY METHODIST CHURCH , HON. TONYE ONIYIDE-BRIGGS, MEMBERS OF RIVERS STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY, BARR. MIKE EPELLE, CAPT. MIKE  & MRS WILLIAMS-HART, DR. UMAR ARDO, FORMER SPECAIL ADVISER TO THE PRESIDENT, HON. UCHE ONYEAGOCHA, MR. SOKI GRAHAM-DOUGLAS, GENERAL SOTON ALIU, CHIEF TIMI ALAIBE, MR LALI HALLIDAY, MRS TORU OFILI, IBUOMI OKUJAGU, DEINMA OKUJAGU

We also thank SENATOR BETTY APIAFI, SENATOR BARRY MPIGI, HON. BRIGHT GOGO, SENATOR OLAKA NWOGU, SENATOR MAO OHUABUNWA, SENATOR SAM ANYANWU, PRINCE EMMA ANYANWU, MR. MICHAEL ROBERTS, MAZI SAM OHUABUNWA, CHIEF HARCOURT ADUKEH, DATOM KIO-LAWSON, PORT HARCOURT CITY PEOPLE

And several other highly respected persons far too numerous to mention.

May God bless you all and replenish you in multiple folds. Amen.

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CultureFront Page

Cultural Splendour As Govs, Kings Grace Sekibo’s Chieftaincy

Dignitaries from all walks of life including Traditional Rulers graced the installation ceremony of the former Minister for Transport and former Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Chief Abiye Samuel Precious Sekibo as the Chief and Head of Achin War Canoe House of Koniju Town, Okrika.

The ceremony which took place at the National School Field, Okrika Local Government Area on Saturday could best be described as a carnival and the people gave honour to whom honour is due.

The VORTEX correspondent who was at the venue of the ceremony observed unprecedented crowd, as guests jostled for space even as attempts by the master of ceremony, Barr. Golden Tamuno directing security personnel to clear the arena for other guests to have a glimpse of the events proved herculean.

Some of the dignitaries that added colour to the installation include the State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, His Deputy, Dr. (Mrs.) Ipalibo Harry-Banigo, former Governor, Sir. Celestine Omehia, the Senator representing Rivers East Senatorial District, Senator George Thompson Sekibo,  former senator, Lee Maeba, Director-General of Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Dakuku Peterside and former Information and Communication Commissioner, Emma Okah.

Also present were a former President of Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Chief OCJ Okocha (SAN), Chief of State Government House, Hon. Emeka Woke, top politicians, National and state lawmakers, Local Government Council Chairmen and party loyalists.

Our correspondent also report that Traditional Rulers at the occasion include the chairman, Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers and Amanyanabo of Opobo Kingdom, His Majesty, King Dandison Douglas Jaja, Jeki V, a former Chairman of the Council and Amanyanabo of Grand Bonny, His Majesty, King Edward Asimini William Dappa-Pepple III, Perekule XI, His Majesty, Eze Leslie Nyebuchi Eke, Eze Gbakagbaka of Evo Kingdom,  His Majesty, King Onyekachi Amaonwu, Eze Eberiugo IX of Eberi Omuma, His Majesty, King Emmanuel Biagolike Obudibo, Ikwo V, Amanyanabo of Ogoloma Kingdom, His Majesty, King Alfred Semenitari Abam Ado IX, Amanyanabo of Wakirike Kingdom, Okrika, His Royal Majesty, King Tamuno-omisiki Ogube, Ogube I of Kirike and His Royal Majesty, King Ateke Michael Tom, Sekuro of Niger Delta, Amanyanabo of Okochiri Kingdom.

Also present were His Royal Majesty Mene Suanu Baridam, Gbenemene Bua-Bangha III, Kasimene Bangha VII, Amanyanabo of Abuloma, King Bright Ateke Fiboinumama, Amanyanabo of Ele Kingdom, His Royal Highness, King Felix Tamunoseipiriala Okuru, Apina VII, Amanyanabo of Kala-Ogoloma, His Royal Highness, King Goddy Idaminabo Idikisima-Olunwa, Amanayanabo of Koniju, His Royal Highness, King Nelson Atubo Oputibeya, the Amanyanabo of Tuboniju, King A.A. Opuambe among others. 

Businessmen, religious leaders, women of sustenance (growth and just every social group was represented at the ceremony to bear witness as Achin III takes oath as the a War Canoe House and a member of the Okrika Divisional Council of Chiefs.

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