By Abuchi Onwumelu
Part of the reasons why people go home for yuletide is to identify with their culture and tradition.
That was why the people of Umukata Village in Okpeze Town, Orumba North Council Area, wasted no time in organising Umukata Day for their children to witness their culture and get acquainted with them. The event took place on the 4th of January 2021
Arriving Umukata Village Square was a sight to behold as both men and women, children, as well as friends and well-wishers, trooped out to witness the event, being the first in the history of the community.
As expected, masquerades of different kinds featured at the event, such as Okwomma, Ajofia, Silima, Mmanwu Agbanasaa, Agbogho Mmanwu, among others, and thrilled the spectators.
Performing the kolanut rites, the traditional ruler of Okpeze, Igwe Innocent Onwumelu, expressed joy that the village could plan such an outing, and urged other villages to emulate them, even as he prayed for good health, long life and prosperity on his subjects.
Speaking, the Traditional Prime Minister of the community, Chief Donatus Nwafor, and the chairman of the village, Chief Ralph Ogbogu, said they decided to organize the event so that their children who came for yuletide would have stories to tell when they got back to their base, urging them to always hold their culture in high esteem.
For their parts, the chairman on the occasion, Mr Livinus Okeke, and another chieftain in the village, Chief Aaron Nnagbo, said the event would be an annual one and would expose children of the community to their history and what the Okpeze people were known for. They advised them not to depart from their roots.
Umukata Village is one out of the four villages that make up Okpeze Community whose occupation is farming.