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The History Of Ibillo - Culture - Nairaland

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The History Of Ibillo by ohosi4real(m): 11:27am On Oct 06
Ibillo is a small town situated in Akoko-Edo local government area in Edo State in Nigeria. Ibillo is surrounded by several neighboring towns/villages including Ikiran Oke, Imoga, Ekpesa and Lampese which are all part of the Twenty two communities said to make up the Okpameri group, all within the Akoko Edo local government area with the LGA headquarters in Igarra.
Very little is documented about the origin of the people of Ibillo, but, in oral tradition, it is believed that the people migrated from Benin kingdom. The people engage in such occupations as farming, trading, wood processing and pottery. The land is fertile and she has a large market relative to other Akoko-Edo communities. The market is located along Ibillo – Abuja express way. Ibillo has four quarters and rulership is rotated among those quarters.
Ibillo has been administered since 1890 from Ikiran, Kabba, Okene, Iddo, Fuger and Auchi. Ibillois one of the central town in our country and the political headquarter of ward four (4)
According to archives records almost every statement made about the administrative organization of Ibillo was hotly disputed, but the following account represent the probable truth. The village is divided into four (4) territorial quarters, the people of each being divided into two families.
Families elect their own heads and function as administrative units. In ancient times the quarter -head was the priest of the quarter –fetish, but under the leading personality acquired the position and descendants of all post holders are now claiming to be quarter heads.
The chief priest or their lineal descendants are also striving to regain their authority and it is interesting to note that other claimant only assert their equality with them and not superiority over them. Thus although the Udezi, Amaru, Otaru and Agbin are admitted to be the spiritual head of the four quarters there is at least one claimant to the temporal headship of each. The title of Udezi is always held by a member of the Ubianure family of Ekoya, Azaru by a member of llava family of Oze, Otaru by a member of Ilasa family of Ohuase, and Agbin by a member of Ekun family of Efolo. The quarter cannot be said at the present time to be a functioning administrative unit.
In ancient times the Udezi as the controller of three of the Deity worshipped by the whole village, was defacto head of it. He was however, replaced by the Nupes who appointed the leading personality to the post of "Zaiki" a title changed to Onibillo in 1930. It was not possible to obtain a list of men who have held this position in the past, nor is there any agreement as to succession to it in the future. The Onibillo has had a good sense of recognition this is fact and they sit side by side in equality and apparent amity.
There are four age group through which every man should pass, joining the first between the age of 13 and 16 and passing through the others at seven (7) years. intervals. These are namely Ekuasor. Ekupupa. Ekuafe, and Ejafe. After leaving, the last , man can take -UMU" which entails ceremonies, Payment some amount, in the olden days, like £3 and seven goats to the elders, entertaining the village, and he is then called Oja and can wear a red tarbush the pagan rites necessary for initiation into the lowest age grade and promotion to others is repugnant to Christianity and the system is moribund. The elders are however, reluctant to open membership of the “village council” to anyone" who has not taken “UMU”
Recently Ibillo happen to be the headquarter of electoral ward four (4) women have no traditional political rights but enjoys measure of economic independence. Women age group are formed but purely of social character.
In the olden days, marriage takes place before first menstruation. Widows are allowed to re-marry without refunding dowry.
Bride Price: In recent days, the same as lkiran-Ile, but note that according to Onibillo of Ibillo marital rites are not highly regarded, couples maybe allowed to live with each other for so many years with children, without carrying out the marital rites. The kindred are willing to accept dowry or their marital rites when the couple are ready for it, not because it is expensive but they don't normally attach importance in that but they attach more importance on the level of love and care that the couple have for each other. Children of that type of marriage, automatically belongs to the man unlike the Enwans.
Shrines and Deities in Ibillo
The name of the shrines and deities in Ibillo are as follows:
1. llokwaigbe: This bears the same name with the deities (IIokwaigbe). The priest of IIokwaigbe is usually appointed by the community. This shrine is like a community shrine in Ibillo because it serves as a general traditional deity
2 Eho: Is another shrine in Ibillo which bears the same name as its deities. Though the Onibillo of Ibillo condemned shrines and deities. He maintained that as far as he is condemned that it is satanic and does not in any way contribute to the growth and development of any community. This does not exist in Ibillo like other parts of the Okpameris in Akoko-Edo.
Traditional Medicine (Tridomedicial Or Herbal Medicine)
According to HRH J.O. Ogunuubi, The Oni Ibillo of Ibillo Herbal Medicine is given a high regard in Ibillo.
Herbs are native medicine. He said that many of the drugs that are brought into this country by the Japanese, one may ask how did they Japanese improve so well? There came a time when they sent all their youths to different countries for training and after some years they now returned home and those native medicine they are now manufacture and export to different countries is now the result of the training they were sent for.
He quickly appeals to the government to create a suitable avenue for herbalist or those that want to go into training to become herbal doctors. In a view of improving and developing the health section, he said that by so doing it will help to boast and develop the orthodox medicine as an alternative to it.
Traditional Festivals
In Ibillo there are many traditional festivals such as Ufonoh. Okuna, Efake,
Akpe, Aseku, Ukeh. Imu, and Erumu .
(i) Ufonoh: This festival is usually done by the children, to honor their patent. This is done to mark that their Parent has accomplished a fulfilled life on earth.
(ii) Aseku Festival: This festival is normally held every three (3) years in Ibillo.
Aseku festival is done to mark the initiation of new age grade and the graduation of other groups of the age -grade to a higher level.
(iii) Ukeh Festival: This festival is celebrated in Ibillo by parents whose first daughter is about to get married. It is done to mark that the parent has a grown up daughter.
(iv) Imu Festival: It is done to show that one has graduated to an elder council and whoever that does it is entitled to be buried with accorded respect as a member of the Imuie (elders) in Ibillo.
(v) Ennui Festival: This is a masquerade festival held every year and every
seven (7) years. They are of the same type but have different duration of
celebration. The annual one is not as pronounced as the one that is held every seven years duration.
Iwoze Festival: Is for mature girls in Ibillo who are up to the age of marriage. They perform it before they get married and in a situation whereby a girl did not perform this ceremony. She is been humiliated or abused etc and there is a place or some festivals which the person is not allowed to enter or participate or must
not Partake in because she has not perform the Iwoze.
Clan Headship
According to HRH Oba G.B. Ajogu clan headship is rotated among the ruling families namely Akposor, Akpoka, Afenaremo and Afuduak families in Ekor but Clan headship rotates amongst the communities that make up the clan namely Ekor, Ekpesa. ikiran-Ile. Ikiran-Oke and Ibillo.
The Ibillos have numerous delicacies which are commonly consumed such
As Irazo (Moimoi), Irare (Pounded yam), Okamu (Amala), Iseseri (pigeon bean)
Traditional Dressing
Shotoko and Agbada for men and Buba and wrapper for women.
Land Ownership
- Family own land in Ibillo
- Land can also be inherited by kindred in Ibillo
- Land can also be mortgage but it depends on the family that owns the land or depending on the number of years agreed with the kindred that owns the land.
They have numerous drums used in different occasions.
Farming and garri making. Ibillo is rated the highest garri producers in the whole of Akoko-Edo. People come from far and near to Ibillo market to buy garri. They also cultivate crops for cash and consumption.
Presently Ibillo is the headquarter of electoral ward four (4), Ibillo is one of the communities that make up North Akoko.
Note that Ibillo is a central town in Akoko-Edo though very much under developed. It has a lengthy road that links Abuja, Lagos.
The only Federal Government College in Akoko-Edo is located at Ibillo

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