By Victor Bieni
Ubulu -UKU- A nonagenarian and fashion designer; Mrs.Angelina Awunor has been crowned the ‘Isi Ada Onicha Okpe’ at Ubulu Uku, Aniocha South LGA of Delta State.
The colourful event took place recently at both Mrs Awunor’s family compound at Onicha Okpe and Idumubo quarters of the town simultaneously.
During the occasion, assorted food were served and over seven different dancing groups, ranging from Agwuba dance, mmonwu, ukpukpe and other cultural dancing groups performed. It was an occasion for merriment as there was enough food to eat and assorted drinks to share.
High point of the event marked the crowning of Mrs Awunor, during which the eldest man (Diokpa) in Onicha Okpe decorated the “Isi Ada” with red cap knitted with sparkling white feathers.
Before the crowning proper, the highly respected Onicha Okpe family had earlier decorated Mrs Awunor as the “Okwa Ada” Umuoshulueze of Onicha Okpe quarters in November last year. That former position-“Okwa Ada” placed Mrs Awunor as an associate “Ada” ready for crowning.
Mrs. Awunor’s installation as “Ada” is by virtue of the woman being the oldest living woman in the community. Apart from her age, her crowning is also coming on the heels of her numerous contributions to the development of Ubulu-Uku community.
In her acceptance speech when the “ofo” was presented to her last year, Mrs. Awunor thanked Onicha Okpe people for considering her worthy of the title. she promised to do her best to better the lives of the people in the community just as she affirmed her readiness to work and surpass the legacies left behind by former “Adas”.
Mrs. Awunor also, used the opportunity to express her readiness to continue to strengthen the traditions concerning women and their roles in the society.
“I intend to use this position as an avenue to campaign for the betterment of our people. I intend to ensure that women have their pride of place in the scheme of things”, Mrs. Awunor said.
Commenting on the installation of his mother as “Isi Ada” , one of Mrs. Awunor’s sons; Mr. Anthony Awunor said it was not a surprise that she was honoured with the “Ada Onicha Okpe” title as her love for her community cannot be quantified.
Mr. Awunor pointed out that his mother has been working for the development of the community for a very long time, noting that it was indeed an honour well deserved.
He also used the opportunity to call on Onicha Okpe people to continue to support the incoming ‘Ada’ so that she can be able to achieve her goals for the community.
Meanwhile, the emergence of Mrs Awunor is not a surprise to many who are conversant with a striking story surrounding her birth.
According to family sources, in 1927 one of the elders of Onicha Okpe, Mordi Ojulubi had an amazing dream that a little uncommon girl would be born.
In the dream, late chief Mordi was quoted as saying that he saw a great woman who he described as a leader and somebody that would be elaborately celebrated in her immediate community someday.
In the early hours of the same day, a little beautiful girl was born into the family of Mr & Mrs Peter Benyeogor. As soon as Mordi heard about the birth, he sent for the little baby and quickly gave her the name “Oliuwe Ukwu”. Oliuwe in Ubulu Uku parlance implies somebody who has come to this world to enjoy. In some places, it is seen as a chieftaincy title of high repute. “Oliuwe Ukwu” therefore, means bigger “Oliuwe”.
Till date, most people never knew why Chief Mordi gave a little baby such a big title at birth. However, that name quickly consumed both her local and English names. Till today everybody calls her Oliuwe. Some people even thought that it was a chieftaincy title already taken by the woman.
Speaking at the installation ceremony of Mrs Awunor, an Onicha Okpe elder who was aware of chief Mordi:s prediction, reminded the audience that what they are doing is a fulfillment of the tradition that has been sealed over nine decades ago.
“What we are doing here is not strange. When this woman was born, one of our elders Mordi Ojulubi had already given her this title even at a tender age.” so it is a fulfillment of our prestigious culture and traditions. From today you are now the Isi Ada of Onicha Okpe”, the elder said. .