The people of Ikwo Local Government Area of Ebonyi State Monday celebrated their Nnefioha Festival.
Nnefioha in Ikwo Noyo is a cultural norm that marks the end and the beginning of a new year in the clan.
This year’s Nnefioha festival which took place at Edukwu Noyo, Ekpelu Community in Ikwo Local Government Area of the state attracted people from all works of life including top government officials, traditional rulers, the Academia, Captains of industry, Ndi Ozo, Youths, and Women Organisations.
The Governor of Ebonyi State, Rt. Hon. Francis Nwifuru represented by the Chief of Staff Government House, Abakaliki prof Emmanuel Echiegu called on the people of Ikwo Noyo Clan to uphold their rich cultural heritages formed to promote peace, unity, and development.
He thanked the people for voting for him massively during the Governorship election in the State.
On his part, the Speaker, Ebonyi State House of Assembly, Rt Hon. Moses Odunwa said the people of Ikwo would remain eternally thankful to the Governor for giving Ikwo noyo clan pride of place in his administration and enjoined Ikwo Noyo Clan to remain the path of peace and growth.
former Governor of Ebonyi State, Chief Martin Elechi who was the Chairman of the Occasion in his remarks give the background of the celebration and explained that Nnefioha Festival offers communities in the Clan the needed opportunity for a reunion and encouraged people to consolidate their culture which promotes unity.
Speaking to Journalists, Bar. Sunday Nwankwo the Chairman of Ikwo Local Government Council, underscored the importance of culture in people’s life, stating that the Nnefioha celebration marks the end of the Ikwo Calendar year and provides a forum for community development projects and social events.
Nwankwo used the medium to announce that Edukwu Aji Ekpelu would henceforth be known and addressed as Edukwu Noyo, and said the Council would construct an ultra-modern pavilion to improve the aesthetics of the arena.
The Senator representing Ebonyi Central Senatorial Zone in the National Assembly, Senator Ken Eze, and the member representing Ikwo/Ezza South Federal Constituency, Hon. Chinedu Ogah urged the people of Ikwo to maintain the existing peace and unity in the area.
Hon. Ogah said while at the national assembly, he will continue to advocate for issues that promote the people’s culture
In their goodwill messages, the Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Mr. Ifeanyi Ogbuewu, the Traditional Ruler, Amagu Erimogwudu Kingdom, His Royal Highness, Eze Dominic Aloh, Professor Joseph Afiukwa of Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki and the National President, Ikwo Noyo Youths Consultative Forum, Dr. Onyechi Nwankwo thanked Ikwo Council Chairman, Br Sunday Nwankwo for making the event a remarkable one and wished Ikwo people well.
In his address, the National President of Ikwo Development Union, Dr. Sam Nte Egwu beckoned on Ikwo indigenes to be more united and bring home branches of their investments to Ikwo to create job opportunities for the teeming youths.
Highlights of the event were the foundation laying ceremony of the Edukwu Noyo pavilion by the Governor of Ebonyi State, Rt. Hon. Francis Ogbonna Nwifuru and putting of pepper sauce on the local dish (Iye Ose Le Ukpara) by daughters of Ikwo led by the Wife of the Governor, Chief Mrs. Mary Maudlin Uzoamaka Nwifuru.
Many cultural dances including Oyawa masquerade, Ikpobina, and Opu Inya which is a sociocultural display that accompanies events for titled people entertained people at the event.
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