Bayelsa Agog As Diezani’s Community Host Uge Adiafaa Cultural Festival

HRM King Godwin . G. Igodo ( Ogbotom Edede vii ) Ebeni – Ibe Atissa Kingdom , Bayelsa state


LAGOS JULY 21ST (NEWSRANGERS)- Bayelsa State was in a celebration mood as the people of Yenakan, hometown of Ex -Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezeani Allison Madueke invited other Atissa Communities as it played host to the Uge Adiafaa Atissa Yenakan cultural festival 2019. NewsRaangers correspondent, Amos Okioma who witnessed the colourful event report.
The Uge Adiafaa Atissa cultural festival is an age long opportunity for the people of Atissa in Yenagoa local government area of Bayelsa state has been in existence for the past one hundred years and running was celebrated by the twelve communities that constitute the Atissa clan.The uniqueness of the festival is the rotation among the twelve clans and this year,s edition was
hosted by Yenakan, the home town of former minister of petroleum resources, Mrs Dezieani Allinson Madueke . Hence, it was tagged ” Uge Adiafaa Atissa Yenakan 2019″ The people have not only treasured the festival, but holds it in very high esteem. It is semblance of the new yam festival during which prayers were offered for bumper harvest and God protection of the farmers. The festival was founded by late Chief Fredrick Adugu Simangi ( Ogbotom Edede 1V of Atissa Kingdom ) one hundred years ago.
In an address of welcome by His Royal Majesty King Godwin Igodo Jp, Ksc, the Ogbotom Edede ( v11 ) Ebeni – Ibe Atissa said this year,s edition was very unique because as they also marked the 100 years of the festival, hence it is dubbed the Centenary celebrations.
According to him, this festival is the only cultural celebration by the people , that is why it has become an opportunity to attract its sons and daughters to the kingdom both within and diaspora together, stressing that it also serves as a rallying event designs to foster brotherhood and cultural re – invigoration .” We as people , we must continue to define and re – define our identity and promote those positive aspects of our culture while doing away with those that carry negative consequences ”
The Royal Majesty stated that being the host to the seat of power in Bayelsa state , they area widely admired for their peaceful disposition and they will continue in this admirable way in order to enhance and encourage economic growth and development.
Hence, he urged all communities in the kingdom that any one with one form of grievances or the other especially those relating to chieftaincy tussle to sheath their sword and toe the path of peace as concerted efforts therefore must be made by themselves to dialogue in the spirit of give and take so that these grievances are amicably resolved .He used the opportunity to admonish the youths to shun cultism , gangsterism, banditry and brigandage which are ill winds that blow nobody any good.
” To our youths , I see you for who you are , the leaders of tomorrow.Get yourselves prepared to take over the baton of leadership .You must therefore the circumstances get good qualitative education or skills.You should be hands on to take over effectively.It is not our culture to kill or maim our fellow humans ”
He also commended them for being very co – operative and always ready to key into all events that are being lined up for this year,s epochal Uge Adiafaa and extolled the courage of the women which has resulted to bountiful harvest .
Also speaking the chairman of the Central Working Committee ( CWC ) HH Ovieakini Amos said the festival is a cultural showpiece of Atissa to the world , promotes unity and steadfastness of their people ,tightens their bond of relationship with their Epie Kith and kins, unites their sons and daughters in , diaspora , promotes unity , serves as means of passing their culture from generation to generation.
He also used the opportunity to call on Bayelsa state government to come to their aid in providing social amenities such as transformers to enable them and other communities within their precinct to enjoy electricity in spite of their proximity to seat of government which is a stone throw, they also pleaded for roads to connect Famgbe to Ikolo and shore protection for ogbogoro. He lamented and decried their sons and daughters that have been in government for their failure to attract development to the rustic communities despite their nearness to the Bayelsa state seat of Power.
Also in their list of demands were the construction of bridge , dredging of the Epie Creek for easy navigation and ease of farming and fishing and the rehabilitation of the moribund water tank. They commended Hon Oforji Oboku for the construction of Concrete Walk way which enable to enter the community after being ferried across the Creek at the Federal Medical Centre.
The Bayelsa state Deputy – Governor , Gboribioghah Jonn Jonah in his response described the Uge Adiafaa as one cultural festival , a potential tourism aspect that can be exported to foreign countries as veritable income, which he has being attending since he assumed office and commended them for using it to foster their cohesion and a platform of unity among the twelve communities and also commended the peaceful disposition of the Atissa Youths and leadership of Atissa Kingdom and called other communities of the state to emulate and charged its youths to shun cultism and other social behaviors. ” Am always fascinated by the dance procession of the women that appeared in different dress ” On their requests for social amenities , he told them that government is desirous of spreading amenities to all nooks and crannies, the Yenakan Community will not be an exception .”Development is defined by the least developed areas” he said.
In an interview, the chairman of the occasion, HH Okpoebi Righteous Gwegwe JP, Ogiligba 1 of Atissa kingdom reiterated the importance of the festival to include fostering of unity, love and oneness among the twelve communities of Atissa , adding that as a cosmopolitan city for the advantages of being the state capital their expectations from government has been very high and that festival is devoid of fetish and not tied to any deity , hence the festival was culminated with a non denominational church service.
Another chief from Ovom Community , Chief ThankGod Gagbe concord that over the years they have been using the Uge Adiafaa to promote their cultural heritage and for tours ism promotion and that has been responsible for variety of activities lined up for the festival by modernizing it with thug of war between the men and women and dance competition where trophies were always given to deserving communities after the the dance procession by the women in different apparels and presentation of basketful of yams to the Roysl Majesty for his prayers to the women for bumper new harvest season.” We also used the festival to celebration our liberation
Another flavor to this year’s, Uge Adiafaa was the conferment of chieftaincy titles on some deserving sons and daughters of the clan who have distinguished themselves in their chosen aspect of human endeavors.
According to the HRM King Godwin Igodo the conferment of chieftaincy titles was for leadership, Authority and Glory of God.
Speaking to journalists one of the conferees , chief Noble Akenge , a foremost Environmentalist and former Special Adviser to Goodluck Jonathan eulogized his people for considering him worthy for the chieftaincy title which he going to cherish and it will spur him to continue to do his best in anything he embarks upon especially to help humanity to grow and develop. He promised never to disappoint the confidence his people reposed in him .
Besides, the festival was attended by all the Ebekens of Atissa kingdom ( paramount Rulers ) , Traditional Title Holders in Atissa Kingdom and Ebenitom Fina Eken of Atissa Kingdom ( women leaders )
Also in attendance were politicians such as Senator Representing Bayelsa Central Senator Douye Diri, Arc Reuben Okoya, One of foremost contender for the November 16 candidate and Hon Oforji Oboku among others.

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