It was a complete show of rich cultural history and heritage in Omor Community in Ayamelum LGA, Anambra State as the traditional ruler, His Royal Highness, Igwe Oranu Chris Chidume, MON (Eze Ana-Ukwu, Eze Igulube of Omor) celebrated his 2022 Ofala festival on Friday.
Ofala festival is one of the feasts in Igbo land celebrated by traditional rulers to thank the creator for His mercies. It is also known as an event that brings sons and daughters of the community together under one roof to pray for peace and progress in Omor as well as celebrate their own who have done well and brought glory to the community.
Since his emergence, HRH Igwe Oranu Chris Chidume’s annual Ofala festival has become an event people of the community eagerly wait for because of the merriments associated with it. No wonder as early as 7:00 am of Friday, the event’s eve, people started trooping into the Igulube Royal Palace, the venue of the event, to catch another glimpse of their highly respected king, and to witness cascades of other cultural activities on display.
Among the cultural activities were; the Ogbagidi Omor in Igulube Movement, Igwe’s Majestic Outing (Iwa-Ogbo), and Message from the Throne by Igwe Omor. Other cultural activities on display were native dance groups, masquerade displays, and live band performances, among many others.
A high Point Of the Occasion was the Installation of 6 Omor Sons into the prestigious Nze n’ Ozo Society by Igwe Chidume, In their speeches, some of the new Ozo, Ozo Peter Emeka and Ozo Joseph Okonkwo who expressed gratitude to the king, assured to use their positions to foster development in the community and not to betray the confidence reposed in them.
They promised to always be on the side of truth, justice and equity.
The head of Ndi Ozo in the community, Ozo Obiekezie Udemezue, and a member of the Igwe’s cabinet, Chief Paul Egwuatu, described the 2022 Ofala as the best so far in the history of the community, while thanking the traditional ruler for positive transformation in the community.
Addressing the natives and guests, HRH Igwe Oranu Chris Chidume thanked God for His mercies attributing it to the reasons for the existing communal peace, harmonious relationship, brotherliness, and oneness among the people.
While Igwe Igulube recounted the many successes of the community under his care, he frowned at the practices of parents giving out their underaged daughters in marriages for economic gains and status.
He noted that the community has taken up a project to save the girl child from underage marriage by initiating a Girl Child Education Project in Omor that would ensure proper training and development of the girl child. He called on the state government and other well-meaning individuals to key in the idea and bring the project to fruition.
Igwe Chidume also sued for peaceful conduct of the 2023 general election and advised the various party candidates jostling for different elective positions to go about their campaigns in the most peaceful manner and not heat-up the process.
The 2022 Omor Ofala festival was colorful. It attracted people from all walks of life ranging from politicians, captains of industry, academics, diplomats, monarchs, religious, women associations, and youth associations within and outside the state.
The 2022 Ofala festival started on 15th December 2022 with a media interaction tagged “Omor In Focus” and was concluded on 18th December after a thanksgiving mass at Christ The King Parish Omor and was celebrated by Rev Father Bernadine Muoka of Pope John Paul II Seminary Major Okpuno, This had in attendance Hon. Vincent Ofumelu Member Representing Oyi/ Ayamelum Federal Constituentcy, State Coordinator Field Office of National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA) Mr Peniel Jack, Management Staff of Krisoral Group of Companies and Indigenes of Omor.