The 2020 edition of Oji Ezinihitte (kola nut festival), one of the most famous cultural festivals in Igbo land will flag off on Friday, with the traditional planting of kolanut seedling (ido oji) at a central location in the host community, Chokoneze.
The traditional planting of kola-nut seedling heralds the main event which holds on January 1 every year.
Chairman of the Publicity Sub Committee of the festival tagged: Chokoneze 2020, Sir Lucky Iro, said all the traditional rulers of the 14 autonomous communities in Ezinihitte Mbaise Local Government Area of Imo State and colleagues from the neighbouring communities are expected to converge on Chokoneze Ancient Kingdom for the ceremony.
“The planting of kola-nut seedling is the first programme of the Oji festival. On Friday, August 16, 2019, all the 14 communities in Ezinihitte Mbaise, and Umuhu, Lagwa and Ibeku in Aboh Mbaise, Imo State, will converged on Orienta market square in Chokoneze, to pay homage to their ancestral home, with the traditional planting of kola- nut, thereby, kick-starting the main event, Oji Ezinihitte, which holds on the first day of January every year,” Iro explained.
The host traditional rulers, Eze Godson Nnanna Nwosu of Umuchoko and Eze Mike Nwamara of Umueze autonomous communities that make up Chokoneze ancient kingdom are expected to lead other monarchs in the kola- nut planting ceremony.
Among the traditional rulers expected to grace the occassion are the monarchs (Ndi Eze Ezinihitte) of Oboama na Umunama, Ife na Owutu, Akpodim, Chokoneze, Amumara, Ihitte, Okpofe, Ezeagbogu, Itu, Eziudo, Obizi and Onicha plus the three communities of Okwuato – Umuhu, Lagwa and Ibeku.
The celebrated Abigbo Chokoneze Cultural Dance Troupe headlines the various cultural dance groups expected to entertain guests at the ceremony.