Ndigbo In America Begin Igbo Festival

By KayCee August 3, 2014 07:56

THE first World Igbo Festival of Arts and Culture held by the Council of Igbo States in Americas (CISA) has begun in Igbo Village at the Frontier Culture Museum in Staunton Virginia, United States of America, with strong condemnation of the activities of Boko Haram sect and crimes in Nigeria namely kidnapping, robbery, among others.

  President of CISA, Mr. Chudi Asidianya, while addressing the opening session of the festival, urged the Federal Government to strive to address these crimes against the country. He beckoned on the international communities to assist Nigeria and not to see the country as problem, hence it has the capacity to spread beyond the country.

 “We condemn the killings and kidnappings by the Boko Haram sect and other groups; we implore the civilised world to join hands in ending this terrorist enterprise in Nigeria”.

  The three-day event, titled: “Investing in Igbo culture, language and values to build stronger communities”, is organised by CISA, in collaboration with over 26 Igbo State Associations in America and Canada. It had participants from other sister-Igbo organisations, town unions and cultural associations from Africa, South America, Europe and Asia.

  Specifically, attendance was from Nigeria, United Kingdom, Canada, South Africa, Mali, Liberia, among other countries.

  The festival, according to Asidianya, “is designed to showcase CISA’s renewed promises to our brethren in the Americas, from Canada to the United States. Our vision is to move forward. It is to use our clarity of purpose-driven agenda to leave our imprints on the landscape as we celebrate the culture, values and the traditions of roughly four million Igbo from Abia, Anambra, Delta, Enugu, Ebonyi and Imo states in the Americas and their value added to the mainstream American socio-economic and cultural growths.

  “The cornerstone for our success is found in the spirit of oneself and in our commitment to meeting the needs of our communities through ethical leadership, cooperation and accountability. By doing so, we hope the reward will translate into us leaving a clearer narrative written by us on our contributions to the landscape for our children and generations to come”.

  Commending the Ohanaeze Ndigbo led by Chief Garry Enwo-Igariwey for selflessly working for Ndigbo to let what he called ‘Voices of Reason’ prevail as they search and negotiate the way forward for the Igbo, the CISA president noted: “Let the vision of all Nigerians in this process be the exploration of how all, the respective groups that make up Nigeria, fit into the big picture and move forward at the same time as we advocate for our regions”.

  In his remarks, the Ohanaeze president (Igariwey) commended those that made the founding and establishment of Igbo Village possible, saying: “We have come to be part of this history. Ohanaeze will assist to make the village a great place where our children who can’t come home (Nigeria) will have need to do so by having a feel of what and how it looks and feels”.

  Welcoming the participants to the museum, the Director, Mr. John Avoli, who had visited Igboland, said the village would continue to be kept well and commended his workers for doing so. He urged the Igbo to always commend his workers accordingly.

  According to him, the museum, which is owned by the Commonwealth of Virginia and is situated on 300-hectares of land, also teaches African history.

  Notable persons at the event were the Archbishop of Owerri Province, Dr. Anthony Obinna; Eze Obidiegwu Onyeso; Eze Nri, Eze Uzu Awka; Dr. Gibson Nwosu, Prof. Pita Ejiofor, leader of Ndigbo in Mali, Chief Okorie; MBA President of Igbo World Assembly and Trustee of The Frontier Museum, Dr. Nwachukwu Anakwenze.

  Others are Ticha, Prof. Akuma Njoku; Deputy Leader of Anambra State Association in South Africa, Onyekachukwu Onyeka; Special Assistant to Anambra State Governor on General Hospitals, Nwamaka Arinze; Dr. Anthonia Uche Umeh, who is the national president/founder of Anambra State Women Association in the USA, among others.

  Events scheduled to hold during the festival are yam roasting and tales by moonlight, Nollywood movie streaming, naming ceremony of Igbo descendants, lectures by Archbishop Obinna, Prof. Ejiofor, who will speak on speaking Igbo language (Suba Igbo), cultural dances, among others.



By KayCee August 3, 2014 07:56