SHORT HISTORY ON IWU UMUODAFE, IBUSA, DELTA STATE

In Ibusa two quarters are known to celebrate Iwu festival on annual basis. Ogbeowele and Umuodafe.

Umuodafe from time immemorial, celebrates theirs in December. This is a festival they cunningly “stole” from Umueze Village.

Legend has it that Umuodafe was astonishingly stupefied by the spiritual and colorful nature of the iwu as celebrated in Ogbeowele that when they heard that Ogbeowele had acquiesced to given part of the sacred offering including teaching Umueze the rudiments of the iwu feast and dance, they laid in wait at night in Umueze when the iwu was put on fire and made away with the pot.

Umueze village woke up in the morning and was flabbergasted that the pot had vanished and upon investigation they found out that it was now in the custody of Umuodafe, who was ready to go to war to protect their prized sacred “loot”. Umueze ran to Obi Oyana the father of Obi Adigwe of Umuwor (in whose compound they had learnt the rudiments of iwu) to plead with Ogbeowele to give them another iwu sacred items but was refused.

In order not to remain as a village without a festival, Umueze proceeded to Abala to be taught everything about the ulor festival which they brought back home and practiced.

The Ulor festival, which they celebrated to this day is celebrated in Umuekea, Idinaisagba, Ezukwu and Ogboli villages as an annual event.

Over the years, Umuodafe has come to respect the Obi Oyana’s ancestry and Ogbeowele village as the bonafide spiritual authority and custodian of the Iwu festival in Ibusa and therefore celebrates only after Ogbeowele has concluded theirs.

I hope you have learnt from this.

Until when next I come, we shall proceed with the full analysis of the day to day celebration.

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