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Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) - Culture - Nairaland

Nairaland Forum / Nairaland / General / Culture / Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) (18085 Views)

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Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:19am On Jan 07
Ekpo Masquerade is a cultural play that was originated from the Efik, Ibibio and Annang people in the Cross River/Akwa Ibom land in Southern part of Nigeria.

Ekpo Masquerade is one of the oldest institutions in Africa which was known to maintain law and order in the society.
The name "Ekpo" means ghost. The Ekpo Masquerade was known to originate from spirits of dead ancestors and deities who came back from the spirit world to administer justice to the people in the living world.
As a secret society, membership is strictly by initiation; hence, every aspect of Ekpo is designed to strike awe, fear and caution among women and non initiates.

On 31st December in the year 2020, a community in Uruan Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom state had their Ekpo Masquerade festival.
People from different works of life troop into the community to witness the event.
At about 1a.m, the streets were filled with people anticipating the celebration of the Ekpo Masquerade.
At the junction of the community was a white canopy and under the canopy were group of men drumming different kind of drums and singing traditional songs.

SOURCE: https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191243232735222

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Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:20am On Jan 07
At about 3:30p.m, some Ekpo Masquerades started emerging from a forest which is called the "Evil forest". It's believed that the Ekpo Masquerades live in the Evil forest in which the emerged from.
They were coming out in a single line and looked well organized. Speaking with WonderTV correspondent, a member of the community who happens to be one of the initiates of the Ekpo Masquerade said that this particular masquerade which was the one leading others outside of the forest is called the "Akpan Ekpo" meaning the first born.
He led other masquerades as the all go round the community and entered the houses of their members both dead and alive to pay them homage.
The Akpan Ekpo was seen holding a flat rectangular wood on the left hand and a piece of stick on the right hand. Has he moves, he hits the stick on the rectangular wood.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ueiUj9UEs0

SOURCE: https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191247592734786

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Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:20am On Jan 07
The next masquerade which was behind the Akpan Ekpo was dressed almost like the Akpan Ekpo and held a bell on his right hand. He rings the bell as he moves behind the Akpan Ekpo.
One of the Ekpo masquerade member Mr. Iyang Uwem told WonderTV correspondent that this particular masquerade is called the "Udo Ekpo" meaning the second born of the Ekpo (ghost) family.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SgCyYK61LoE

SOURCE: https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191254476067431

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Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:21am On Jan 07
While moving ahead in front of the Ekpo Masquerades, were group of young and vibrant men with machetes and swords. One hitting his machete against it's opponents machete.
They were moving in a circle formation.
One of the young men while speaking to WonderTV correspondent stated that the activity by which the young men move in circle and hit their machetes against one another's machete is called "Ukuwa".
He explained that the play has rules which every participant must follow.
Some of the rules are;
1. You must not allowed your machete/sword to fall to the ground when hitting it against an opponent. If it falls, your opponent seized your machete/sword.
2. You must hit your machete against your opponent's machete with force.
He further stated that the play is very risky as some persons end up losing their hands or fingers as a result of a cut by an opponent's machete/sword.
In his words " Some men could be very wicked especially if the person has a bag energy towards you he could either cut your hand off or hit your machete to the ground.
Some people come with one machete and end up going with more machetes if they are able to hit people's machetes to the ground.
Once your hand or finger is cut, there's nothing you can do. It's a play and every participant is cautioned to be very careful.
Last 3 years my elder brother's hand was chopped off in this play. We can't stop the play because it's tradition he added".
When asked if a stranger can join the Ukuwa, with a smile on his face he replied "why not! If he has the mind because this game is based on having a strong mind".

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oakTv_0jrfU

https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191258552733690

lalasticlala

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Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:21am On Jan 07
Another masquerade seen was busy chasing young ladies. The masquerade was dressed in a dirty sack bag. In his hand was a sack bag and a plantain sucker.
A boy who walked with the masquerade told WonderTV correspondent that the masquerade is called "Atontog Ekpo" meaning masquerade who pours ashes.
Then the sack in which the masquerade holds is filled with ashes from firewood.
The masquerade chases after ladies who made their hair neat then pours the ash on the ladies' hair.
He sometimes romances the ladies if he catches them.
It's fun seeing him do that the boy added with a loud laugh.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TVXfyBn_1-0

SOURCE: https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191260596066819

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Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:21am On Jan 07
The next masquerade dressed a bit different from others. This masquerade has a weaving mat made of palm fronds at the back of his head and palm fronds on his back. Also on his left hand was an iron wrapped with palm fronds and a very sharp machete in his right hand.
People were running from this particular masquerade.
Drums were drummed at his back.
Speaking with WonderTV correspondent, one of the men who drummed behind the masquerade said that this particular masquerade is the most dangerous and wild.
The masquerade is called "Ayarda" which means wild.
Everybody runs from this particular masquerade including the initiates says the man.
The masquerade can cut anybody he comes in contact.
The drum is used to communicate with the masquerade.
The palm fronds on his back, if cut out, can make the masquerade become very wild and looking for whom to cut and once he can't get someone, he cuts himself and drink the blood to be tamed.
This masquerade mostly walks in the bush and not on the road like other masquerades.
Other masquerades run away from this particular masquerade.
When he wants to enter a compound either to drink or pay homage, he pins the rod in his left hand to the ground at the entrance of the compound in which he is entering.
We who drums for him are very careful because he can cut us with that machete in his hand.
This particular masquerade used to climb roof tops then jumps from the roof to cut off a goat's neck off the goat.
According to our tradition, he is expected to take off the goat's neck with one cut that is why his machete is always very sharp the man added.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qc53CAXg39g

https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191264929399719

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Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by saphiere(f): 1:23am On Jan 07

The next masquerades which appear ten in number were very tall and they danced very well.
Their legs were like what could look like sticks.
A man who accompanied these masquerades told WonderTV correspondent that these set of masquerades are called "Inuen Ekpo" which means "Bird masquerade" reason being that their mouths are mostly looking like a bird's mouth.
These set of masquerades are known for their heights and dance said the man.
The people in charge of these set of masquerades, before the festival they would go to the evil forest and stay for seven days.
They don't sleep with women during this period. While in the evil forest the only eat unripe plantain with palm oil.
They don't eat what is cooked or made by a woman.
It's believed that if they do, the masquerades whiling dancing during the festival might fall which would be a big shame and disgrace to the community.
So to prevent them from sleeping with women or eating what is made by a woman, they are being made to live in the evil forest for seven days and prepare themselves for the festival.
These set of masquerades can only be seen with gongs in which the play while dancing to the drums of their members.
They are the most colourful that is why people admire them the most said the man.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B0Fk_Dbq1mg

https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191291912730354

lalasticlala

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by saphiere(f): 1:23am On Jan 07
These set of masquerades were the youngest. The were guarded by some boys while they dance as they were led out of the evil forest by the Akpan Ekpo.
One of the guards who spoke with WonderTV correspondent said these set of masquerades are addressed as "Nditoh Ekpo" meaning baby masquerades.
They are still tender and learning from the bigger ones he added.
These ones are always walking closer to their mother he said.

https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191294326063446

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Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by saphiere(f): 1:24am On Jan 07
This other masquerade was seen on the back of a wooden cow and the cow carried him while he was controlling the cow with a rope held in his hand and tied to the cow's nose.

https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191295062730039

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by saphiere(f): 1:24am On Jan 07
A man was seen carrying a calabash with flame of fire coming out from the calabash. A source told WonderTV correspondent that the man is a native doctor whose works include the following;
1. Stopping rain.
2. Neutralizing any charm programmed to work against the festival.
3. And also bringing the masquerades out from the ground through incantation.
The source said that while people come from different communities to witness the event, there are people who come with evil intentions some come with charms to scatter the event so this native doctor works to put a stop to it.
When asked how the native doctor brings the masquerades out from the ground, the source refuses to talk said it's a secret that should remain a secret and only known to the initiates.

SOURCE: https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191296979396514

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by saphiere(f): 1:25am On Jan 07
The next masquerade has a very big head and was walking very slow and bending.
The man next to him who held palm fronds told WonderTV correspondent that the masquerade was the father of all the masquerades seen at the event.
The masquerade held a short broom with his right hand and was chasing away flies from him.
Source told WonderTV that the father of the masquerade which was referred to as "Ette Ekpo" eats flies while other masquerades feed on worms and drinks alcohol.
https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191298232729722

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by saphiere(f): 1:25am On Jan 07

These ones were referred to as "dirty masquerades" because they look dirty. A source told WonderTV correspondent that these set of masquerades are often seen in the land of the living compare to others.
Others may come out on special days like this day.
These masquerades when going into a house of their members either to rest or drink, walk backwards into the house.
Speaking with WonderTV correspondent, the masquerade leader explains that the act of walking backwards into any house by the masquerades is something that was passed from generations to generations.
Ghost don't walk forward into any building. These masquerades are believed to be ghosts (our ancestors) who come to the land of the living to merry with us.
So, it's therefore required that the walk backwards into any building they enter while being in the land of the living.
When I die and come back as a masquerade, that is how I will walk into any house to either pay homage or drink said the masquerade leader.

https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191309799395232

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:26am On Jan 07
The last masquerade to come out from the evil forest was the tallest. This masquerade had a nose mask on. The people of the community called the masquerade "Eka Ekpo" meaning mother of masquerade.
According to a source who spoke with WonderTV correspondent, this masquerade gave birth to all the masquerade.
On her head was a basket while a life hen was tied to her left hand.
The source said that the mother masquerade is believed to return from the market hence the basket and hen.
Inside the basket contains food items to be cooked for the masquerades.
The mother masquerade had two people one in front and one at the back towing her while people with palm fronds surrounded her as she walks. She was the slowest in terms of walking.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LgKjaakc7ms

SOURCE: https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191300822729463

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:26am On Jan 07
More

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:26am On Jan 07
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Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:27am On Jan 07
Hmm

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:28am On Jan 07
shocked

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:28am On Jan 07
..

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:32am On Jan 07
ooi
Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 1:32am On Jan 07
fd
Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by sapphiere(f): 2:54am On Jan 07
Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by SifonAbasi(f): 6:54am On Jan 07
saphiere:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B0Fk_Dbq1mg

https://www.facebook.com/wondertvofficial/posts/191291912730354

lalasticlala
In my place we call this one abiopoh. That thing is stick they climbed on to walk.
Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by Gondonu: 7:00am On Jan 07
cheesy Mmuo! This is what Lai Mohammed said will produce 1M jobs?

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Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by Ekeletu: 7:25am On Jan 07
This shit still happens in this modern days?
Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by MANNABBQGRILLS: 11:19am On Jan 07
Culture is life.

Our culture is our heritage.

God bless Akwa-Ibom State.

God bless Nigeria.


Oan,
Legend has it that this masquerade below was taken to the hospital with a broken leg.
He is still receiving treatment as we type cheesy
Odikwa serious! cool
This happened in our sister country,
The best African country after Nigeria.
Aka, The Gold Coast. cheesy


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z5fVcBXROMo

5 Likes 2 Shares

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by Nobody: 11:20am On Jan 07
the masquerade are weird but the costumes are good
I wondered why the men are holding Cutlass

2 Likes

Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by MYZOLE: 11:21am On Jan 07
Nice
Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by Enudapan: 11:21am On Jan 07
Nah eh! No qualms
This is so sophisticated
Re: Masquerade Festival Celebration In Akwa Ibom State (Videos, Photos) by ipobarethieves: 11:22am On Jan 07
sad Evil MASQUERADE sad

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