"On the third day, April 17th 1968, which was the Dday, we landed at Oron beach supported by the navy and air force, with less resistance than it would have been. So, we displaced them [Biafran soldiers] from their vantage, well defended points, because they couldn't read our intentions correctly. We sent them in the wrong direction at the Widenham Creek, as we seized the initiative and made them fight before they were ready.
Here we are informed of historic events and facts
The origins of the Igbo are a mystery and a great source of debate within the anthropological and scientific community. Interestingly the Igbo are not a homogeneous stock, but rather a linguistic cluster of distinct peoples who speak very similar, [and for the most part] mutually-intelligible languages and have over time intermingled and come to share similar traditions, values, and cultures.
Today, Nigeria is tilting towards the soar end she most dreaded years ago, precisely in 1967, the Year the Republic of Biafra was declared; an action that precipitated the horrifying genocide on the Igbo nation by the British-inspired Nigerian government.
But in the early months of the same 1967, a historical convention was held in Aburi, Ghana between the two yet at the time, quarreling sister countries and mediated by the then Ghanaian Head of State, Lt-General Joe Ankrah. It was the Aburi Accord.
Over the centuries, the people of Awka (in modern-day Anambra State) have developed an age-old conversance with the sciences of metallurgy and iron working, which has led them to be reputed throughout Igboland as exceptionally-skilled blacksmiths. In the precolonial and early colonial eras, Awka smiths often migrated to towns as far as Idah (in modern-day Kogi State), where they settled and employed their skills.
This is a description of an Igbo slave, put up for sale during the slavery erra
WILLIAMSBURG, September 3, 1772.
COMMITTED to James City Prison, on Monday the 31st of last Month, a Negro Fellow who says he is the Property of Colonel Cary of Hampton, and that he belongs to a Quarter in Albemarle; his Name is JOE, is an Ibo Negro, about fifty Years of Age, five Feet nine or ten Inches high, with three Scars on the right Side of his Face, the middle One the largest, and has on a Crocus Shirt and Trousers, and Negro Cotton Waistcoat. JOHN CONNELLY.
— John Connelly
This is the traditional ruler (Igwe) of the Ahaba (Now Asaba) kingdom and his attendant in 1906. The picture depicts their costume and traditional apparel which are marks of their social status.
In the grades of Chiefs in Igbo land, the first and highest grade is that of Igwi [Igwe]. The distinguishing mark is a circle of broom (termed Aziza, from the palm tree), knotted before and behind, with upturned ends a couple of inches or so in length.
Agbọghọ Mmụọ are maiden spirit masks that represent the spirit of dead girls that have manifested in the dancer to come back to parade in their communities.
The masks also symbolise the ideals of female beauty among many Nri-Awka Igbo communities.
Their extremely white faces symbolise that they are spirits.
Photo Credit: Nwafor Thomas
Pictured above are 1781 and 1790 advertisements for the sale of 620 and 436 Igbo people at Montego Bay, Jamaica who arrived from Bonny Island in present day Rivers State, Nigeria.
Most Igbo people transported over the Atlantic, especially during the collapse of Igbo societies in the 18th century, were done so via ships coming from Liverpool and Bristol (UK) to the ports of Bonny and Calabar, many Igbo people consequently ended up in British colonies where they were among the most numerous ethnic groups.
A survivor-soldier of the Republic of Biafra during the Nigeria-Biafra war, Elder Inagah was pictured taking on an army of villagers in a lecture on the Biafra history and existence at Igweocha, Rivers State.
This is how it should be. We should pass on our common history and cultural heritage to our younger generation. It is much bigger the legacy we leave.
Chukwu gozie gi nna oma...