By Itoro Godwin & Henrietta Ifyede
The Igbo concept of Aku Ruo Ulo is a clarion call to all Imo State sons and daughters where ever they live should not be trivialised. According to the concept, any patriotic Imolite must think of a greater Imo State beyond his or her time.
Ochiagha David Mbamara, the Ochiagha Ikeduru, Imo State, at the 30th anniversary of Imo State Towns Development Association (ISTDAL), in Lagos, said Aku Ruo Ulo is a clarion call for all Imolites to think homeward:
“What is presently obtaining among Imolites is that of obsession with the struggle to acquire wealth, landed properties and struggle for leadership position especially in the states where they live at the detriment of their roots. All ll Imolites should embrace the leadership qualities of Dr. Sam Mbakwe.
“Aku Ruo Ulo distates financial recklesness in government, arrogance and visionless leadership in all its ramifications. Every Imolite should imbibe the good virtues of brotherliness, detesting Oka Nma N’ama, meaning he who supports others at the detriment of his own kinsmen. There is need for all Imolites to maintain close affinity with their homeland.
“Let us think Imo and act like true Imolites. Imo has a divine mandate with God all hands must be on deck to ensure its actualization. Let us take Imo back to the days of Dee Sam Mbakwe.”
President of the association, Pastor Okechukwu Anorue, said: “We must imbibe the spirit of putting on our traditional attires and patronizing our native foods. Most of our people tend to forget their root as soon as they get to another land.
“They allow their own culture to die and their children suffer as well. They find it very difficult to understand their language and to trace their root. This has poised a lot of challenges to the Igbo community.”
Chief Don Ezugha said: “Our rich culture must be showcased and this forum has helped us to know our people better. We are able to solve issues amicably and the ones that have to do with the state we channel it to the right source which is the government office.
“What Imolites are showcasing today is unity and its importance in nation building. Unity is one of the key factors for any relationship to work, when there is unity then every other thing is in place.
“An average Igbo man is known anywhere he goes. It could be either the way he dresses or the food he eats. That is why we will continue to showcase these vital cultural values to our upcoming ones not to deviate from the ways of their forefathers, especially now that globalization has crept in.”