By Fidelia Femi-Adedoyin
The Honourable Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Lawrence Ejiofor, has commended the Ogbeowele people of the Ibusa Community for maintaining the tempo of peace and unity through the years.
The Commissioner who was ably represented by the Director of Culture, Friday Anaziah, made this statement at the Iwu annual festival of the Ogbeowele people. He said that peace and unity is the bedrock for any form of development in a community.
He thanked the Ibusa people for their efforts at keeping the peace of the land and assured them of government’s continual support through the Directorate of Culture and Tourism, as he wished them a beautiful celebration.
The Owelle of Ibusa, Sebastian Adigwe, said “that the Iwu festival is a festival of peace and progress. It is also a thanksgiving to God for the year that is well spent and to also pray for a bountiful harvest for the coming year.
The past six years have been a journey of modernization, we have set in motion a gradual but sustainable evolution in the celebration of this festival.
Two years ago, we celebrated the ‘Iwu Ukwu’ which received the recognition of the State Government and a few corporate organizations like MTN and International Breweries Ltd.
This year, glamour is being introduced by bringing the best of our Anioma music exponent who has been on the melodious chanting journey for 40 years and counting in the person of The Message Man, Ogbogu Okonji and his Anioma brothers”.
The Owelle said that the peace element of the festival precedes dancing by a week (four market days) of silence whereby the community prohibits quarrel, brawl, combat, fight and noise of a significant nature. He said “these are periods of unconditional forgiveness and reconciliation”.
He thanked the State Government for endorsing this festival and appreciated the unalloyed support of the Honourable Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, as well as the sons and daughters of the community who constantly ensure the success of the festival.
The MTN telecommunication brand who happened to be the major sponsor of the event, had in attendance, the Senior Manager, Enterprise Business Sales East, Nsikak Maples. He said that the brand associates with culture because just like the brand, culture is a platform for people to connect all around the world.
The festival had in attendance, online and onsite, sons and daughters of the Ogbeowele community from all over the world, including the Senator representing Delta North, Senator Peter Nwoboshi, Captain of Industry and Community Leader, Dame Philomena Okonwko, and a host of others.