Igbo tradition can't go into extinction - Chief Priest

The Chief Priest in his shrine dancing as he celebrates the New yam festival.

Igbo tradition can't go into extinction - Chief Priest

By Chinwe Nwacha, Onitsha

The Chief Priest, (Eze Mmuo) of Ogwugwu Nwanyi deity, Chukwuemeka Agbata, Sunday argued with those stating that Igbo culture and tradition are going into extinction adding that it false and unbelievable.

Reacting during celebration of his 2023 newyam festival held in his shrine, the Priest disclosed that Igbo religion has been in existence prior to that of the church which according to him was imported by the missionaries into Igbo land.

"Our forefathers thought us the Igbo tradition and we inherited it from them and we are being protected by the deity, Ogwugwu Nwanyi deity, Ndichie, Umuada, Agwu, Orji Okosisi, among others.

"I slaughtered goat, killed hen and cook, for the newyam celebration. I am doing the work they asked me to do. I am a man of peace but whoever that says I will not live will first die before me. It is the deity that will fight for me.

People of my maternal home led by 
Ofia Oduche, Akunwata, from Azu Ogbunike, came here to have blessing and I prayed for them. That is how it is being done," he stated.

Reacting, Akunwata said that, "The Chief Priest called us to come and stay with him, for the newyam celebration and he prayed for our health and that of our household. So that we will be moving forward in whatever we are doing, for his deity to protect us.

" We supported him, and we pray for cow killing by next year. The goat slaughtered is just the beginning of new things to come, he stated.

Also speaking, Sunday Okafor, relation, said, "There is no prayer from the Chief Priest that the deity would not hear," adding that the deity made him to celebrate the newyam festival.

Nwachukwu Okoye Omaja, who came for the celebration said, "New yam festival is Igbo culture, our brother invited us to come and celebrate with him," he disclosed.

Chief Raphel Udokwu, who is in the same agegrade with the priest said, " I am here to rejoice with our brother, the same age grade, ifunanya age grade, we came and saw more than we expected. We pray that it will be well with him, he will live long life, we will all go back to our tradition to live in peace not in pieces," he prayed.

Also Zubechukwu Anierobi- Chief vigilante commander of Ajirija village, stated that, "I am a traditionalist right from childhood and since then whatever I do is moving, I advise everybody if you are a christian, keep your hands clean, if you are traditionalist, live uprightly, culture can never go into extinction," he affirmed.

On the security of the village he said,  "Our community is tight, the only problem is that we mixed up with strangers and most of the crimes are mainly from the strangers living in our community, Ogidi is not known for robbery, they don't kill their brothers, it is the strangers that corrupt our children but I thank God that we are sanitizing them,. Ogidi is gradually returning to calmness," he stated.

Ejike Nwogwodo from Nenwe ,Enugu state, added  "I live with Agbata family for four years now and we are in good terms, I pray for long life and prosperity for the family and the visitors who are here today to celebrate with us. The Chief Priest is a good man," he disclosed.

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