Aba Festival

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Last update June 24, 2020

The Aba festival is celebrated once in every six calendar years. The festival is made up of several ceremonies, which are not less than twenty five. For example, beating of Aba drums, Manhood Dance
(Ututanebe), etc. The origin of the festival has been traced to Anafuas who were the aborigines of the present day Igarra. The Anafuas were said to be dwarfish, but diabolical race. The Anafuas were said to have posed a serious threat to the existence of the Igarra people, hence they later saw to it that the race was completely annihilated. It was said that before they were finally wiped out, they thought the Igarra people the secret of the Igarra festival, which has to do with the administration of the communities.

The festival has two faces; the traditional rites and the ceremonies. The traditional rites are inherent in the festival and serve as the core of such a festival while the ceremonies are outward, serving as a cloak. In the
Irepa festival, the traditional rites are shared among the families. There is no family or person that has overall authority on the traditional rites of the festival. However, the ceremonies are enjoyed by all the people. The traditional rites and the beating of the Aba drums, which is the climax of the ceremonies, are best known to the Ezia-Kuta family. The drums are usually beaten in August of every ""Aba festival period to herald the beginning of the festival. The traditional rites is the beginning of the festival. The traditional rites is done in the beginning of the second Aba drums (Ofuofifu), in January of every ""Abafestival or period at Ugbogbo; it is controlled by the Anona family. The Anoseri, Eghimozoko and the Eghinagada families control the traditional rites of beating the Arido drums. The traditional rites is the beating of the last Aba drums (Okukuku), in the last ceremony before taking of elders titles (AZEGBANI) is controlled by the Anonyete Family. The ceremonies
flow into one another without hindrance from the start to the end

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