Urunebo people of Nigeria

Urunebo people of Nigeria

 


My lovely Village Urunebo.

Enugu Ukwu is a town in Njikoka local government of Anambra State in the Eastern region of Nigeria. It comprises ten villages of which Urunebo is one village.

Urunebo, as the name implies, means a leader. This small and prosperous village has prominent and influential people.A lake cuts across the village, running from the northern part of the small village carrying with it debris and red clay. History has it that the lake brings fortune and good tidings.My primary school Urunebo primary and secondary school was named after the village. Most indigenes passed through this school. I remember my days in the school, it was full of adventure and good tutorials  given by the indigenous teachers. My principal was an old boy from the school and a very disciplined person. He was always in the morning assembly telling us his past days in the school as a head boy and how he came out with the best result in his days.

My village has an ultra-modern shopping complex. It occupies the central part of the community, with the entrance facing the St. Michael Catholic church. There are twenty shops in the complex with a lawn tennis court, a lounge, and a swimming pool.The lounge is usually empty during the year except for festive periods such as Easter and Christmas. There are a lot of parties that take place during the holidays in the lounge.The Saint Michael Cathedral, which is located opposite the complex, has one of the befitting edifices in the community. Most of the indigenes attend the church and are very devout Catholics.

Urunebo village has a modern community hall that was recently built and commissioned by his royal majesty Nnaemeka IV. The construction of a hospital with the latest facilities to boost health care was also recently carried out.Recently, the community embarked on construction and maintenance of all roads in the village, starting from the interior parts of the village to the outer skirt of the community.The community has two major masquerade festivals. Nnsukwu masquerade festival comprises all indigenous masquerades in the village. The Igwe begins the opening of the festival and ushers all masquerades to the venue where masquerades you’ve never seen before dance and show off their regalia.The second masquerade festival is the Owa masquerade festival.This festival comprises all masquerades in the neighboring villages in attendance making it the biggest masquerade festival.

Many indigenous and wealthy people of the community living in the diaspora come home for the festival.There are two main masquerades in this festival, the Ijele masquerade, and Ugo.The Ijele is the most colorful of the masquerades, with its great height and ambiance. It has a unique way of dancing such that it sends thrills to his watching audience. Ugo, the white laying masquerade bird, comes at the tail end of the festive show. It begins with a colorful dance showing off its big white feathers and dancing to the rhythm of the Artilogwuo local drummers and at its last dance lays a big white egg. It is a masquerade festival full of fun and intrigue.Another festival of the community that is well-loved by the villagers is the Igwe end-of-the-year party. The Igwe celebrate it marking another successful year of reign.

It begins with a dance by the king, and his chiefs all dressed in white regalia. They blow loud a loud trumpet to announce the entrance of the king and his royal subjects. At the end of the dance, the Igwe breaks the kola nut, prays for the people for good health and prosperity.The new yam festival in my village marks the end of the planting season. This event brings all villagers to the community hall, where harvested yams are cooked by the village women. The cooked yams made into delicious porridge with big prawns and little pieces of meat is served with fresh palm wine and occasionally it goes with some bottle of beer. The food is so palatable that you could bite your finger while eating the porridge.

My village is hospitable, and lots of events are celebrated .Most of the festivals are as old as the village itself. History has it, that our forefathers  celebrated the masquerade festivals without women in attendance and if any woman sees the Uka masquerade such a woman cannot bear a child again in her lifetime. It is a lovely village with a happy and prosperous people

 

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