Brief History: Historically, Ikwo people could be traced to a man of probity named “Enyinwegu” who first settled at a place called “Nchonu”. He personally named the place “Ikwo”, meaning, “The blessed Land”. Enyinwegu married two wives ; Nworie Enyi and Una Enyi. Nworie Enyi procreated Ezekuna, while Una Enyi procreated Noyo and Nodo.
The first Son(Ezekuna) founded Ezza. Noyo remained at Ikwo, while NNodo founded Izzi. Noyo later got married to one of the most beautiful and hardworking maidens of that time, named “Opefi” and the union was blessed with four sharp-witted children. & they are; Agala, Omaka-Aja, Agom-Ugbala, & Enyi. Sadly, Agala died without a child.
Omaka-Aja became the eldest and settled in his compound at “Unweka”. Agom-Ugbala founded Alike and Echara, while “Enyi” founded “Mgbabu”. & Mgbabu is made up of Amagu, Igbudu, & Inyimagu.
The People: The good people of Ikwo are predominantly farmers. They cultivate the following in a very large quantity; Rice(Ereshi), Yam(Nji), cocoyam(Nkashi) Casava (Njakpu), potatoes (Ogogo), Groundnut (Ashimoko), Soya bean(Azaku), Guinea corn (Igeri), Bambara nut(Akpanyinko)etc.. They are blessed with some natural resources and tourist sites.
Apart from farming, Ikwo sons and daughters have made exploits in business, education, politics and other areas of life. They have produced top Government functionaries, civil servants, politicians and high personalities in different parts of the world.
In Ikwo, all households cultivate all they eat. They are industrious and hardly depend on others for survival.It is important to note that one of the paces you can get the best palm wine, & palm oil is Ikwo.There are eight(8) market days in Ikwo, which include; Orie, Ekoyo, Nkwoeke, Eke, Nchonu, Aphagu, Nkwoigboji, & Igboji. And some of Ikwo surname are derived from the market days and names related to their ancestors.
The people of Ikwo are naturally hardworking. They don’t mind whatever they do for a living, provided it’s legal, and money comes out of it. They believe in hardwork, hence it is very rare to capture a bandit whose identity could be traced to Ikwo lineage. No vagrancy in Ikwo, and you can never see Ikwo man doing it anywhere across the globe. They believe that indolent is a misdemeanor.No man or woman from Ikwo is mentally poor. In the class of one hundred (100), Ikwo man or woman must be among the best three.
One major thing that distinguished Ikwo from any other tribe is high rate of hospitality. They always try to love visitors more than they love themselves. They so much derive joy in comfortability of visitors.
Politics and Personalities: Ikwo is currently the most populated local government area in Ebonyi state with 20 political wards. Ikwo has also produced provident & thrifty personalities in different areas of life, whose pundit are felt across Nigeria and beyond. Some of the personalities especially in politics are not limited to the following;
1. His Excellency, Chief Martin Nwanchor Elechi MFR, CON_____Former Governor, Ebonyi State, former Commissioner in old Anambra State.
2. His Excellency, Barr Eric Kelechi Igwe PhD___Current Deputy Governor, Ebonyi State.
3. His Excellency, Ambassador Jonah O Mkpuruka____Nigerian Ambassador to Argentina, Chile, Peru, and Uruguay.
4. His Excellency, Ambassador Frank Nchita Ogbuewu___Former Minister of Culture and Tourism, Former Nigerian Ambassador to Greece, Chairman, Ebonyi State Elders Council, Pro chancellor, & Chairman Governing Council, Ebonyi State University Abakaliki.
5. His Excellency, Ambassador Lawrence Nwuruku____Former Minister of State for commerce and Industry, Former Nigerian Ambassador to Mexico, Former Federal Commissioner, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
6. Rt Honorable, Comrade Chinedu Ogah OON__Member, Federal House of Representatives.
.7. Chief Lastborn Onwukaike Egwu MNSE, FIIE, MNIAE____Former President, Nigerian Squash Rackets Federation, Member of the governing body, World Squash Federation (WSF), Group Managing Director/CEO Goldspot Group.
8. Distinguished Senator Emmanuel Onwe___Former Senator of the Federal Republic.
9. Barr Okeagu Ogadah_____Former Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Ebonyi State. Former Chairman, People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Ebonyi State. Former National Commissioner, Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).
10. Professor Fidelis Ogah OON____Pioneer Vice-Chancellor, Ebonyi State University Abakaliki.
11. Chief Clement Alobu Nweke______Principal Secretary to Ebonyi State Governor.
12. Dr Emeka Onwe-Ogah____CMD, Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki.
13. Chief Godwin Mbam mni_____Former Chief of Staff, Government House Abakaiki.
14. Barr Nicolas Nwazunku Ogah____Surveyor-General, Ebonyi State.
15. Chief Hyacinth U Otteh______Former Chief of Staff, Government House Abakaliki.
16. Elder Fred Udogu_____Former Commissioner for Lands and Surveyor, Former Commissioner for grants and Donor Agency, Ebonyi State, Former Chairman, ACTDB
17.Chief Celestine Nwali_____Former Commissioner for Local Government, Chieftaincy Matters and Rural Development.
18. Rt Hon Chike Ogiji Imo_____Former Chief Whip, Ebonyi State House of Assembly.
19. Barr Celestine Igberi Nweme______Former ALGON Chairman, Ebonyi State.
20. Professor Fidelis Okpata____Former Deputy Chief of Staff, Government House Abakaliki.
21. Engr Uche Okah_____Honorable Commissioner for Housing & Urban Development, Ebonyi State.
22. Chief Sam Nte Egwu_____Former Registrar, Ebonyi State University Abakaliki.
23. Professor Petrus Emeka Nwakpu______Former Chairman, Academic Staff Union Of University (ASUU) Ebonyi State University Chapter
24. Evangelist Anthony Nwigberi_____Former Permanent Secretary, Local Government Service Commission.
25. Chief Nweke Anyigor______ Former Member Federal House of Reps, Former Commissioner for Special Duties, Old Anambra State.
26. Arch. (Chief) Christian Asaga Nwali____Chairman and CEO, C Sagas Project Nigeria Limited.
27. Chief Innocent Itapah Azobu_______Senior Special Assistant to Ebonyi State Governor.
28. Professor Eugene Nweke______Dean, PG School, Ebonyi State University Abakaliki.
29. Chief Oliver Eze___Former Permanent Secretary, State Universal Basic Education Board.
30. HRH Eze D I Aloh______Erimogwudu III of Amagu Ikwo
31. Rt. Hon. Humphrey Nwuruku —- Chief Whip, Ebonyi state House of Assembly
32. Rt. Hon Francis mam —— Two term member, Federal House of Assembly.
And many others so numerous to mention.
Problems: Despite the fact that Ikwo has produced high personalities whose cough can shake a mountain in every parts of the globe, yet, so many sons and daughters of Ikwo especially some youths are currently faced with puzzling circumstances and conundrum rationale by some narcissistic politicos in the local government. some of those problems are not limited to the following;
1. Underdevelopment: It’s outrageously bad to note that some respected personalities from Ikwo have no edifice at home, but they scattered cities with gigantic buildings. Some of them are dwelling very good at cities, while their brothers and relations are grinding their teeth in pains and sorrows at the Village. So many of them have never attracted any infrastructure to their village.This is rainy season, it’s grievous to note that there are some parts of Ikwo you can’t go now. No good road, no good drinking water, nothing like electricity, no hospital, etc But there are personality God created, and specially blessed to alleviate the sufferings and distresses of people within that locality, but they rather turned a blockage and opprobrium to their people.
2. Unemployment: Despite the fact that, it’s in the blood of Ikwo man to always be engaged in one legal business activities or the other, but the point is that, many are underemployed. Some graduates are doing a very wee job that is inappropriate for a graduate. Many are consenting and very ready to start a very lucrative business, but no start-up capital. Whereas, God has blessed Ikwo with high profile individuals, but, apart from Comrade Chinedu Ogah OON and few others (that are not even more than 3), none again is perturbed about the high rate of unemployment among graduates in Ikwo. & such is very egregious.
3. Intolerance to Opposition: In Ikwo, there are so many political blockages, that have been in power since the inception of 4th republic of Nigerian on 29th May 1999. But they hate to be fruitful, and detest to be opposed. Each time you stand on “B” when they said “A”, they will see you as Beelzebub, and must wish to get you chastised unjustly. Many people have known the truth, but shall never voice out because, they can’t stand on the heat of being castigated unjustly. And so many other problems.
1. Ikwo youths should be gainfully employed. Alex Ekwueme Federal University is in Ikwo Land. Give them greater quota during recruitment, let them enjoy the benefit of hosting a Federal University.
2. Some politicians from Ikwo should learn to be accommodative. Learn to be close to the people, not during election only. It is evil to be egotistical, change and be very altruistic.
3. Ikwo people need good road, electricity, and good drinking water. It’s egregious to host Oferekpe water scheme, and still be drinking from dirty pond. Please, join in prayer for the progress of Ikwo.
Culled from Article written by Theophilus Ifeanyi Igwe
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