The Sun News

Igbodo community eats new yam in grand style

Stories by Ben Dunno, Warri                                      

Celebratiing new yam festivals in some parts  of  the country  is  as old as the culture and tradition  of   such  communities.

It  was  not  surprising  therefore,  that  Igbodo  community  in  Ika  North  East  Local Government Area  of  Delta State chose  to  celebrate  this year’s  new  yam festival  with  fun fare.

It was an  occasion that attracted illustrious sons and daughters of  the community , both  far and near,  as the annual  festival has become a rallying point , where indigenes converge  to  celebrate their rich culture .

The uniqueness of  the festive period could  even be  felt  in the air, as the weather is usually friendly and favourable,  indicating  the pleasant disposition of nature to the event and the happy mood of the people ,who put  behind  them whatever differences they might have,  to celebrate what unites them more as a  people.

The new yam festival  is not only a yam eating festival, but a very symbolic event, which  promotes cultural affinity that unite the community, from one generation to another.

Speaking  at the grand finale of this year’s new yam festival , the traditional ruler of Igbodo kingdom, Obi Ikechukwu Osadume 1, appealed to the state government to tap into the strength of  farmers in Igbodo community, to boost it’s ‘Delta Beyond Oil’ programme:

‘’Farmers in the community have the strength to grow various types of crops, including yam, cassava, tomatoes, pepper and maize. It was due to the commitment of the farmers that the  community remains  the food basket of  the state.”

Obi Osadume 1, represented  by the Iyase of the kingdom, Chief Ifeanyi Unomah, maintained that  because of the commercial production of farm produce in the community, traders come from various parts of  the country, to the Igbodo market ,  including travelers on  the ever busy Asaba-Benin-Lagos Road.

The traditional ruler stated that one major area government could  provide jobs for the teaming youths is agriculture, stressing that those  who have already embraced farming should  be  encouraged , by giving them   soft loans, providing farm implements,  as well as  construction  of markets, storage facilities and food processing industries,  to check wastages.

Obi Osadume  pledged  the people’s continued support to goals and aspirations of the state  government, even as he promised that the community would  remain  very peaceful.

President general of  the community, Chief  Peter Chiemeke, expressed gratitude  to God for the bountiful harvest, describing the people  as peaceful and hardworking. He also  appealed for government presence in the community, saying the people would  continue to strive to move the community forward.

Mr. Nkem Nweke commended the  people  for  their dedication and hard work in the area of farming, pointing out that community’s success story in farming was as a result of  the  people’s commitment to promoting food sufficiency in the state.

He  attributed  the present recession in the country  to  over dependence on oil revenue over the last four decades,  and called on government at all levels to place more emphasis in developing the agricultural sector, as a way out of the  current recession.

Nweke, specifically implored the state government  to look in wards to know  how  it could  boost  the growth of both small and medium scale farming in the state,  especially in Igbodo community, noting that any agricultural investment in Igbodo community would  not be a wasteful one,  as the people have proved themselves beyond  all reasonable doubts,  as dedicated, hard -working and committed farmers.

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