People of different faiths graced the 2022 Ugie-Ewere festival performed by His Royal Majesty, Oba Ewuare II, CFR, the Oba of Benin.
Recall that Ugie-Ewere which is performed to usher in the new year,
was part of the ongoing Igue annual festival which has gained a wide scale acceptance globally.
It began in about 40 BC and is usually held in Oba palace in Benin City, Edo State and every home that believes in the Benin tradition.
Ewere leaves which are brought to the Oba palace during the ceremony symbolize peace, good luck, prosperity and bountiful harvest for families in Benin, households, the State and the nation in an age that has been transformed by science and technology.
Palace Chiefs, functionaries, Dukes (Enigie), Priests and Priestesses of various deities, as well as guests pay homage to the Oba at the ceremony.
This was followed by an epic drama and traditional demonstration by Chief Osamede Adun, the Aiyobahan of the Benin Kingdom who presented gifts to the Oba in an astonishing and elegant manner.
The Aiyobahan also known as the ‘old man,’ left the scene after he presented the gifts which he kept in Ekpoki (Benin traditional leather box) and thereafter left the event in line with ancient Benin customs and tradition.
Isikhuan, Emehe and Ikpema Guilds and Ihogbe Royal drummers who sang and danced with maracas, supplied the needed traditional songs to attract ancestral blessings that set everyone in a celebration mood.
Different cultural troupes, including Uhuala Ndiocha masquerades and Ugo cultural troupe from Ihete, Nasa, both from Imo State, South East, Nigeria entertained guests.
There was also a presentation of Ewere leaves to Oba Ewuare ll by the Ihogbe palace group led by the head of Ihogbe Guild, Chief Ihama N’Ihogbe;, while the Queen’s mothers and members of the Royal family partook in the exercise, amidst fanfare.
The Oba made a lasting impression at the ceremony when he presented Ewere leaves to some of the dignitaries including the former governor of Edo State, the Auditor-General of the Federation, Adolphus Aghughu,
Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, Sule Idaiye, Imma of Somorika Clan, President of Neo Black Movement of Africa, His Royal Highness, Olorogun Ese Kakor were all present.