Thursday 3 February 2022


The people who today populate Ikwo land are descendants of a warrior and a unique leader named Enyinwegu. Several centuries ago, Enyinwegu set out from his homeland on a long journey looking for greener pastures. Unsatisfied with his place of birth, he needed a new home where he and his descendants could prosper.

On this long journey, he encountered many peoples and many lands but when finally he got to Nchonu, in present day Ikwo Noyo, he knew that he had at last found a perfect home. In that land his crops prospered and yielded bountifully. His livestocks multiplied. His household expanded.

On all fronts Enyinwegu was getting blessed at Nchonu. Suddenly, he became like a tree planted by the riverside. In season and out of season all he did multiplied. Indeed, this was a blessed land, Enyinwegu concluded and so he named that land Ikwo meaning The Blessed Land.

Enyinwegu’s two wives were also blessed with children. The first of those wives, Nworie Enyi begat Ezekuna whose children are today Ezza people. Enyinwegu’s second wife Una Enyi gave birth to two sons: Noyo and Nnodo who later founded Ikwo and Izzi clans respectively.

With time these sons became men nad needed to establish their own households in secure lands where they could also have access to enough farm land. Ezekuna moved out to establish Ezza land while Nnodo traveled northward to establish Izzi land.

But Noyo saw the blessings in Ikwo and hence decided not to leave. Soon he and his wife Opefi began to build an enduring dynasty. His sons were a bundle of immeasurable joy to him. Those sons Agala, Omaka-Aja, Agom-Ugbala, and Enyi started from an early age to display the traits of greatness. But just when Noyo saw the promises in his first son Agala begining to bear fruit, the young died with no one to bear his name.

Noyo did take consolation in his other sons, however, and groomed them to be men of valour and means.

With Agala dead, Omaka-Aja became the okpara, first son, and his descendants are today what’s known as Unweka. Agom-Ugbala’s children were Alike and Echara. Noyo’s youngest son who was named after Enyinwegu, Noyo’s beloved father, founded what’s today known as Mgbabu principal community comprising of Amagu, Igbudu, and Inyimagu communities. Unweka, Alike, Echara and Mgbabu together with Okpoitumo constitute the five principal communities in Ikwo Noyo.

Okpoitumo is special in that by oral narrations it’s a congregation of all Ikwo children. In those years, wars were frequent. Our ancestors fought local inhabitants, chasing them out of Ikwo land to the land beyond the River that’s today Cross River. Strong men where chosen from every community and sent to fight at the border.

These warriors eventually settled at Okpoitumo in order to wade off invaders and safeguard all Ikwo children. Eventually, a noted warrior and leader, Itumo, was asked to preside over these people. He was to serve as a judge and leader. But these strong warriors proved ungovernable. They were too strong for Itumo the Great.

When the men went home their told everyone of how the warriors couldn’t be governed by Itumo the Great. Those warriors kporo Itumo achichi and the land their inhabited eventually became Okpoitumo.

On one of the occasions when all of Ikwo gathered from far and near at Nchonu, Itumo came with tears on his eyes, his face wrinkled with stress, his heart broken by his people. He admitted before the leaders gathered that the warriors he was asked to govern had proved too difficult for him.

CREDIT: Ikwo LGA Website

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