Festival of Igbo Civilisation to Focus On Women

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Abuja — Aba, the commercial nerve center of Abia State, will for three days, starting from Tuesday May 5, 2009 play host to Igbo leaders in politics, academia, religion and business as the first festival on Igbo Civilization focuses on the women folk in Igboland.

The event will also witness the presentation of a paper on “The 1929 Aba Women’s War- Lessons for Igbo Women’s Liberative and Interventionist Role in Igbo Society, by Professor Chinelo Nzelibe. The second day will also be devoted to the presentation of scholarly works by Igbo egg heads while there will be an excursion to the sites of the historic Aba Women Riots which took place in 1929. The Aba women riots was instigated by the policy of the colonial government to make women in Igboland pay taxes.

Chairman, Festival Planning Committee, Professor Timothy Uzodinma Nwala, who spoke to newsmen in Abuja, said the events would kick off with an opening ceremony to be attended by the Governor of Abia State, Dr. Theodore Orji, Wife of the Vice – President, Mrs. Patience Goodluck Jonathan, President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Ambassador Ralph Uwechue, Archbishop of the Methodist Church in Umuahia, His Grace, Dr. Rogers Uwadi, and several other dignitaries.

Other papers slated for the day and with special focus on the role of the women folk in moulding the society include: “Women Sustaining Igbo Culture and Progress”, by a German expert on Igbo culture and history, Professor Sabine Bal-hasen, “Igbo Culture and Civilisation and the gender question”, by Professor T. N Kanno. “Women Exclusionisms, Igbo Life and Culture, Matters Arising from Chinua Achebe’s 2009 Ahiajoku Lecture”, by Professor Catherine Acholonu – Olumba, “Igbo Women in National Politics”, by Senator Chris Anyanwu, “Aba Women’s Riot; Facts and Recollections”, by Chief Chimkwe Ndimele, etcetera.

There will also be reflections on select novels by Professor Chinua Achebe and Chimamanda Adichie.

The Festival’s Planning Committee is drawn from over seven groups including Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Conference of Democratic Scholars (CODES), Aka Ikenga, Ndigbo Lagos, Izu Umunna (JOS), Izu Anioma, Welan Research Academy (Owerri), Catholic Institute of Development, Peace and Justice (CIDJAP) – Enugu, among others.

It rolled out its first event on the programme last January, with an International Conference on Igbo Civilization and the Ahiajioku lecture which was delivered by Professor Achebe, in Owerri, Imo State. The conference alone brought together over 30 Igbo intellectuals from all parts of the world . This was followed up with an Art and Film Festival which held in Enugu in Februar

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