Thursday, October 24, 2013

Remy Ilona musing on 'Gender Equality' and Igbo culture with Chinwike Justice Oke-Nwosu, Moore Black Chi Mmadike, Aik 'Lord ElNik' Eluigwe, Emeka Ugwuonye, and others........

Chinwike Justice Oke-Nwosu October 22 near Leeds, England, United Kingdom Gender equality and women right is one of the current topics in our society today! Society is waking up to deprecate the long tradition of making women subservient to men! The recent ruling in Botswana where the court ruled in favour of three sisters against their nephew in family dispute over inheritance is a welcome news. Similarly, the change of rule in England where the first child be it male or female will have right to the throne rather than making it exclusive preserve for the male child is another move in the right direction! Campaigners should therefore target situations especially in African continent where distant relatives of the deceased men drive away daughters of the deceased and covet their dads' inheritance simply because the children are the "wrong sex". Fathers are wiser now by drawing WILL - even those with male children are taking steps to ensure that their daughters are not left out in family wealth and estate. I think the thinking is a good one! A situation the male children from the same parents also see their sisters as not worthy of family inheritance stinks! There are a number of cases in Africa and Europe where male siblings cut out their female siblings in family inheritance to extent they are comfortable seeing their sisters wallow in poverty and penury while they corner family inheritance. All children should have equal stake in family inheritance and where a man has no male children, it abominable for distant relatives to start fighting the daughters of a deceased man for the man's wealth! Leaving a WILL is a way to prevent the troubles. This issue runs deep into ethical debate! Some couples have resorted to aborting female foetus on account of some of these stupid gender inequality. Experience has shown that only those who are blessed with children makes have the mindset to make choices regarding gender! Most people hit with infertility pray to have a child - in prayer I bet none asks for male or female but for healthy baby! The world need to wake up! — with Moore Black Chi Mmadike and 46 others. 4Like · · Share Arthur Igbolaju Richard, Randiè Dikeukwu, Afam B. C. Nnaji and 23 others like this. Genny Iwums Nic1 October 21 at 9:28pm · Like · 1
Chinenye Lauretta Ufearoh-Onoh: 💯% on point sir October 21 at 9:33pm via mobile · Like · 1
Adaeze Ogbalu-Ifezulike: So true! Unfortunately talking about WILL is a chat killer for many men. There is that feeling if the topic is raised, that you are implying that they will soon die. We need a big cultural mindset change in this area. A man who dies without a clear will that protects his family is irresponsible to say the least. He has only lit a fire he will not stay to quench! October 21 at 10:30pm via mobile · Like · 2
Afam B. C. Nnaji: Man made laws will always favor men just as woman made laws will always favor women. That is why customs, traditions, religions tend to favor men more than women because the people that put them together were men! That stated, I agree that it does not make sense for female children to be left out of their dad's inheritance. Perhaps, non Yorubas need to learn from the Yorubas how they take care of the female children as they partake in the estate of their fathers. October 21 at 10:39pm · Like · 3
Chinwike Justice Oke-Nwosu: Adaeze I do not actually think that men do not want to draw up their WILL. It is one of those things they keep postponing thinking death will knock on the door when it comes! Everyone lives in belief he or she will live to ripe old age of 90s and beyond - unfortunately, death comes like a thief at any time. It is good to have a WILL even if one has all girls, all boys or mixture of both. More so if they are mixed children of boys and girls and particularly if all the children are girls. The greed of relatives and what they do to girls in absence of a male child is disgusting and should not be given any chance at all! I know of a wealthy man who had only a daughter! His relatives chased the lady away and seized the man's property and sold it and managed to give stipend to the lady and took all! It is beyond me that this type of thing happens in 21st century! October 21 at 10:47pm · Like
Chinwike Justice Oke-Nwosu: Afam B. C. Nnaji it follows Igbos need to learn from Yorubas - but even in Europe, this is an issue too! The only difference I see here is that relatives will not be able to take the inheritance of deceased man if he has a surviving child/children like we have in Igbo land. However, where there is no WILL the male even in Europe try to cut out their female siblings. There is a case going of now between sisters and their brother here in the UK. Surprisingly the court in England which tend to favour women in divorce and ancillary relief matters seem to be lagging behind on this one! This needs to be addressed because everywhere I turn, gender inequality exists and massive education is needed. October 21 at 10:54pm · Like
Aik 'Lord ElNik' Eluigwe: Inheritance is an issue because of what it is INHERITANCE! If you were to succeed the managing director of a company, it would be said you inherited the office. Thus, not every inheritance is hereditory. If this be the case, why do people inherit things -positions, property, people, etc? People are made to inherit a thing on the assumption that they would handle such to further/continue the interests of the original holder cum organization. It would be unheard of that Star breweries will allow a man inherit the position of CEO who has loyalty to Guiness. Here lies the dilemma of woman traditional inheritance. Lands are shared within a community. Every family gets a share. Do you envisage any family losing a portion of theirs simply because their daughter was given a share and by marriage had it transfered to her husband's people? This was how women started to be excluded from inheritance -there was no conspiracy against them! In yore times, people do not have houses here and there; so, it was inconceivable that a girl who will marry will get a share in her father's Obi. As for land sharing, it was largely a communal thing. It was for this reason that JAH instructed Israel that any woman who chooses to partake in her father's property MUST marry within her kindred. I think, the challenge of modern living should focus on welfare. A person should inherit his/her father's property to the extent it helps deal with poverty. A successful son need not squabble and quibble over things he can afford if his siblings/sisters need them more. And any property a man acquires, outside communal inheritance, whose retaining is not tied to the family identity, should be allowed to pass on to whoever -man or woman. October 22 at 1:09am via mobile · Unlike · 1
Aik 'Lord ElNik' Eluigwe: Inheritance is an issue because of what it is INHERITANCE! If you were to succeed the managing director of a company, it would be said you inherited the office. Thus, not every inheritance is hereditory. If this be the case, why do people inherit things -positions, property, people, etc? People are made to inherit a thing on the assumption that they would handle such to further/continue the interests of the original holder cum organization. It would be unheard of that Star breweries will allow a man inherit the position of CEO who has loyalty to Guiness. Here lies the dilemma of woman traditional inheritance. Lands are shared within a community. Every family gets a share. Do you envisage any family losing a portion of theirs simply because their daughter was given a share and by marriage had it transfered to her husband's people? This was how women started to be excluded from inheritance -there was no conspiracy against them! In yore times, people do not have houses here and there; so, it was inconceivable that a girl who will marry will get a share in her father's Obi. As for land sharing, it was largely a communal thing. It was for this reason that JAH instructed Israel that any woman who chooses to partake in her father's property MUST marry within her kindred. I think, the challenge of modern living should focus on welfare. A person should inherit his/her father's property to the extent it helps deal with poverty. A successful son need not squabble and quibble over things he can afford if his siblings/sisters need them more. And any property a man acquires, outside communal inheritance, whose retaining is not tied to the family identity, should be allowed to pass on to whoever -man or woman. October 22 at 1:09am via mobile · Unlike · 1
Remy Ilona: Igbo customs allocate a part of the family 'property' to their womenfolk through 'idu uno'. God did not plan our society for us to have single women. In olden times every Igbo woman was under a man, & thus must have benefitted from idu uno. October 22 at 2:06am via mobile · Like · 2
Egwu Nkama: Great debate. My take is that the issue of tradition and inheritance is all about greed and poverty especially the mental variety. Or else why will any one wonderfully made by God with all the faculties intact wait for the demise of another to better his or her economic lot. I concur that any law made by men will naturally favour the male gender and Igboland to a large extent is a patrilineal society. They are no codified laws to disinherit the female gender but convention and practice perpetuate this obnoxious practice. My considered opinion is that good education especially female education will gradually erode the practice. Government agencies and the courts of law especially at the state level should catalyze this process.It took a Mary Slessor from Scotland to come to the eastern hinterland to abolish the killing of twins which was hitherto our culture. There is currently a test case in my community of a distinguished daughter of the town overwhelmingly chosen by the people as the traditional ruler---the first in Igboland but some people not comfortable with that choice went to court. We are all waiting with baited breath the outcome of this epic. Let us all promote gender equality to promote peace and progress in our land. October 22 at 2:52am · Like · 1
Remy Ilona: Is the distinguished daughter married? If yes, what if to a non native of your town? Ndigbo nwayo nu! October 22 at 2:59am via mobile · Edited · Like · 1
Remy Ilona: The courts are ready to help, if you want to build or to destroy your community. October 22 at 3:01am via mobile · Like · 1
Chinwike Justice Oke-Nwosu: I am very uncomfortable with some of Igbo culture! It is even very uncomfortable when some of us in possession of wit employ and deploy such in attempt to perpetuate or defend some of our cultural heritage that should be dismissed and consigned in dustbin of history. @Remy there is no need saying NdIgbo nwayo nu! All humans are created equal? It does not matter whether the Nwada is married or not and if she is married to "non native". @ Remy Ilona let me understand your argument please: are you advocating that a man with only daughters if he dies and leaves property - houses and lands, that his daughters married and married to "non natives" should be sacked and dispossessed of the man's wealth for distant relatives to inherit? Let me read your take on this. October 22 at 3:33am · Like · 1
Aik 'Lord ElNik' Eluigwe: When a foundation is marked for destruction, those going about it should ensure that the replacement would be better than the one they seek to destroy. Stability in life has never been achieved by convenience; stability in the society will also not be by convenience. Who would not want to be the president of Nigeria? But can we all be the president of Nigeria? What would be if we all insist on becoming president? Can't we feel the instability already that some northern folks are insisting on having the presidency? Societies where ascension to the traditional throne is hereditory have less bickering -others allow themselves to be denied the privilege to rule just to have stability in the society. If we make the mistake of removing all these foundations we see today as limitations and discrimination we risk pushing society to the point of going berseck. Going by Bible stories, problem starts when beings begin to rebel against their positions. Lucifer did, Eve did and Adam did. There should be a limit to reworking foundations except we want to bring the whole building down. October 22 at 4:11am via mobile · Unlike · 1
Remy Ilona: Chinwike you missed my point. If one of your umuada becomes 'distinguished', & you make her the trad' ruler of your town. What if she divorces your townsman, & marries a non natiive, what happens... October 22 at 5:43am via mobile · Like · 1
Francisca Amaka Obinna: In some partS of Eastern Nigeria, the rights of the female folks are still being relegated 2 the background. Thanks to some educated ones among them who are trying hard on WOMEN EMANCIPATION. Its unfortunate that even in recent time, larger percentage of men in Igboland in particular & Africa at large are yet to realze the 'NEED' for drawing a WILL before it becomes late. Some of them on several occasions either witnessed or become part of deceased family whose household indulge in all manner of atrocities in respect of who inherits whatever that is inheritable. We still live with such men who see making a WILL as a serious threat 2 longevity. Such poor families suffer the ignorance thereafter. African man's mindset really needs to be put in place as soon as possible. October 22 at 5:48am via mobile · Like · 2
Remy Ilona: Chinwike, would that nwada still remain your trad' ruler? October 22 at 6:21am via mobile · Like · 1
Perpetua Akaolisa-Ibeh: @ Remy Ilona, according to you women get their inheritance through iduno. If I may ask what and what do you give to the umu Ada's during the iduno? Women don't inherit properties yet when there's a problem in the family the men still expect the female children to contribute. Who is fooling who? October 22 at 6:22am via mobile · Like · 1
Chijioke Ngobili: Why is Chinwike delaying to respond to Remy? October 22 at 6:29am via mobile · Like
Emeka Ugwuonye: I have tried to resist making an input to this topic. But I admire Dr. Chinwike Justice Oke-Nwosu greatly, if for no other reason, for the fact that he is public about his relationship with the brilliant doctor in London. I love it when men are open to announce their relationships. It means that they are monogamous and that they are not hiding such important part of their lives from the public, and that they live better quality life. (Yes, your quality of life is much better if you dedicate to one woman at any given period.) Now, as regards this topic, many of the commentators here seem to have made one fundamental mistake. They have treated culture as one static fact about a society. Some even went further to suggest what God intended for the Igbos to have as their culture. There is no such notion, really. Cultures are continuously evolving over time. There could be dramatic events to emphasize change, but in reality, change of culture continues. Then you also have social conflicts over cultural debates or claims. For instance, a man that wants to oppress his wife could lay a claim to some version of culture, while the woman may resist such maltreatment by laying claim to another aspect of the culture. Also, we must remember that as our society changes, and gets mingled with a wider society, our definition of culture and our cultural alliances would change. For instance, if you circumcise your daughter in Abia State believing female circumcision to be your culture there, you would have violated United Nation's position on the subject. And if you leave that your village and venture into Britain or US with that daughter, there may be adverse legal consequences awaiting you there because your culture, as you understood, has collided with the cultures or laws of your neighbors or the world at large. And by the way, the Igbos, like any other society of comparable land mass and population, do not have the same cultures all the time. If you hear the Enugu people talk of some of the cultures of the Onitsha or Abakaliki people, you may think those are from another planet sometimes. So, really, the culture that encourages genital mutilation or the killing of twins (as we, the Igbos, had that up till early 20th century) cannot only be without any defense or justification, but must also be totally discredited at the penalty of criminal sanctions. So, your culture should not be allowed to override Chapter IV of the Nigerian constitution that says there should be no discrimination on the basis of gender. October 22 at 11:14am · Edited · Like
Remy Ilona: Ada nne Perpetua, you give what have during idu uno. Men-what do they get when there are no properties-movable & immovable? October 22 at 6:40am via mobile · Like
Chukwuemeka Anthony Ezenwugo: @Remy. The current Duke of Edinburgh is NOT English. He is of Greek and Danish ancestry. The heavens didn't fall when QE 11 married him. Ndigbo na emekpa umunwanyi aruu. Idu uno shouldn't be all our precious umu ada receive. Fortunately reality is forcing us to adapt. It is becoming a tall task to pull the wool over the eyes of a respectful resourceful well educated Ada- Igbo . October 22 at 9:26am · Like · 2
Remy Ilona: Ezenwugo can you agree to abandon your father's house and settle permanently in your wife's home 'palace'? Ezenwugo I'm waiting for your answer. And btw fyi I do not see the European model as worth copying. It may be working for them, but I'm yet to see any Igbo who even tried to employ what you canvassed. October 22 at 10:22am · Edited · Like · 1
Remy Ilona: Its all too easy for people to say and agree that 'ana emekpa umu nwanyi aru', without convincing reasons. Ezenwugo I have a wife, sisters and a mother who has departed. I don't/didn't mistreat any of them. I am an Igbo. They are treasures to me. I doubt that you could give instances of Igbo people that we know 'na emekpa umu nwanyi arua'. Or better still tell us the Igbo customs that you practice that are obnoxious, detrimental and disadvantageous to Igbo women. October 22 at 10:20am · Edited · Like · 1
Chukwuneta Oby: Chinwuike,this is a lovely submission~every child should be treasured,regardless of gender. I have never seen anything as irrational as gender discrimination of a child. Imagine where a deceased's kin come to reap where they did not sow just because the offspring of the deceased is of a particular gender...INJUSTICE has no better form! October 22 at 10:12am · Like · 2
Remy Ilona In the so-called developed societies where women have been 'liberated', people get divorced very easily. Women who have been used and abused get forced into constructive divorces. I don't believe in hearsay. I work with evidence. October 22 at 10:18am · Edited · Like · 1
Remy Ilona: The only chattels that a deceased's female off-springs(if they don't have brothers) are precluded from inheriting are the deceased's ana obi, by Igbo custom as practiced in my locality. And even at this, if they do not marry, but chose to stay Igbo custom allows them to inherit their father's ana obi. We have sub-clans in Ozubulu that have matriarchs instead of patriarchs. They have their lands, like their brothers. But if they marry, the deceased's close kins are entitled to take over the ana obi which is part of the family land. Aik 'Lord ElNik' Eluigwe explained all these satisfactorily. October 22 at 10:32am · Edited · Like
Emeka Ugwuonye: My brother, Remy Ilona, I bet that your assessment above is quite biased and even unfair. First, what you describe as women getting divorced is actually better that what you consider women remaining married in Nigeria. 80% of what you call marriages in Nigeria are no marriages. They are situations where women are forced by economic and cultural forces to remain in abusive environment. Why is it that over 70% of Nigerian married men have girlfriends openly, and could actually marry a second wife and expect their wives to remain in the marriage? Rather than focusing on divorce, the outcome of failed marriages, let's focus on the causes of divorce. In America for instance, adultery on the part of the man would lead to divorce 60% of the time. In Nigeria, it never ever leads to divorce. The difference between the two is that in one women have the right to refuse to stay in an abusive marriage, while in the other, women do not have that right. It is that rightless situation that you view as being better than the west. In fact, in Nigeria adultery by the woman would lead to divorce 99% of the time. Yet, women lack the reciprocal right to reject an adulterous marriage. It is important that we know what we are celebrating. What you celebrate as few divorces in Nigeria, as compared with the west, is nothing other the lack of rights and freedom by women October 22 at 10:36am · Edited · Like · 2
Perpetua Akaolisa-Ibeh: @ Remy, women in Nigeria don't enjoy marriage, they endure marriage. Like Emeka Ugwuonye said in his comment above our women don't get divorce because they don't have the freedom to do so, most of them are financially restrained. Your mum will tell you that "di bu Ndidi" ( meaning that marriage is patience) therefore you should take everything that comes. Many men I Nigeria will bring in their girlfriends home and order the wife to treat her with respect or leave. When the woman complains she will be asked what else she want from the man who puts food on her table, clothe her and her children? She will be told that if she loses this one she won't be able to get another one therefore she should stay put and never leave her home. October 22 at 10:49am via mobile · Like · 1
Remy Ilona: Emeka my brother you actually did not get many things right here. If you are observant you must have noticed that I focused exclusively on the Igbo society here which I can say that I know to an extent. Do you honestly think that the Westerner's and the Igbos notions of marriage and expectations are the same? You also ignore that the West and many societies here have different cultures. Many societies here are polygamous. The West is monogamous and more promiscuous, if you really know the Western culture. And what you casually refer to as 'rights' can also be viewed as insanity and licence if looked at mildly. We had men like Tyson wasted in prisons because they 'raped' their wives. Did rape actually occur? In America it occurred because Givens had 'rights'. Nwanne nku di na mba na egheru mba nni. American rights for Americans, but I'm not convinced that they got everything right. I think that you err when you use the standards of one society to judge the other. October 22 at 10:56am · Edited · Like · 2
Chukwuemeka Anthony Ezenwugo: @Remy nwannem. It looks like we have deviated completely from the crux of the matter. Chinweike Nwosu in his characteristic blunt and direct manner pointed out some regrettable harmful cultural attitudes/practices prevalent in parts of the world including Ana Igbo. I was only saying we need to honestly accept the facts. Culture can and should be challenged. I am not talking about marriage or divorce per se. You sighted America and the west. It is interesting to note that not too long ago women could neither vote nor own property in these societies. Who would have contemplated Ike nwunye na mba? As we speak 'traditional' igba nkwu is now done in Houston,Abuja,London,Joburg etc for fear of kidnapping and other financial considerations. For many of us in the diaspora if your spouse is foreign born and you live in her country especially in the West you have for all intents and purposes become another Duke of Edinburgh. October 22 at 11:21am · Like · 2
Remy Ilona: Perpetua inu di na nwunye successfully anywhere, even in the West, requires tons of ndidi. You know this. October 22 at 11:37am via mobile · Like · 2
Remy Ilona: Ezenwugo nwannem thanks for being so gracious. The thing is that we want Chinwike to adduce sufficient evidence that justifies his positions, to satisfy us. October 22 at 11:40am via mobile · Like · 1
Moore Black Chi Mmadike: This kind of discussion will be good in IAM. Chinwike Justice Oke-Nwosu, bring this to IAM and lets discuss it. October 22 at 1:09pm · Like
Chinwike Justice Oke-Nwosu: Moore Black Chi Mmadike I purposefully put this on an open thread so that it reaches Igbos who are not in IAM - it is something that transcends the limit of IAM as a body! I have been on-call so my brother Chijioke Ngobili I am now here to respond to my brother Remy Ilona. I do not know what further evidence my brother Remy wants me to adduce. I mentioned that I am a witness where kinsmen defrauded a woman of her father's inheritance, sold the property and just managed to "offer" the lady paltry sum! There are also case similar to that where the man had only a daughter who married, the man died, the daughter and her own children kept looking after the mother (wife of the deceased) until she too died. The daughter died too after sometime! Two years later the "umu efulefu" in name of kinsmen gathered and swooped like vultures on the man's estate and drove the "nwadianas" out and took control of estate. Their argument just like I intently was reading Remy was that "nwadianas" were from another town! There mother married to a man from another town and cannot come back to inherit the dad's property after marriage! The issue here being that when the man was ailing, it was the daughter and her husband (who was from another town) that were carrying the burden. After the man died, the daughter and the children were carrying the burden of her mother. This "umu efulefu" called kinsmen were no where to be found! They did not tell the lady and the husband not to care for the man because she was married to a man from another town! They only appeared to claim property! Remy tell me how you can justify this greed and atrocity under any culture? Similar to this is a situation where a man and his wife work hard to train their daughters and no so called kinsmen care to ask them how they are getting on! Then at 25years of age when the lady has been well trained with millions of Naira and tons of sweat, kinsmen come around with long list that lengthens from Nkwo Igbo-ukwu to Trafalgar Square in London. They will put on the list things that can empty the Bank account of the prospective husband to the young lady! Some go as far as vetoing the marriage if some of the cruel demands as listed are not met! I find it curious that Remy believes that the right of a female child or her entitlement or share from family wealth should be "idu uno"! From what i know of "idu uno" - this entails, items like fridge, mortar, yam, few clothes and so on; at extreme end may be a car from well to do family! How do you equate this to landed property - houses and other ancillaries the male folk or more disturbingly the distant relatives want to covet! I agree totally with Oba Emeka Ezenwugo that in Igbo land, umunwoke na emekpa umunwanyi aru! Further evidence, let me tell Remy, I am the tower block stopping similar case happening in my kindred where I block gangsters trying to take over a poor lady's inheritance on the ground that she had no brother and she is a woman married to another town and therefore has no right over her dad's house and property. I have blocked the kinsmen's access to the lady's inheritance and dare the "vultures" to take me on despite threat from the hoodlums that their "head will role!" - One told me, "over my dead body will you stop us!" and I told him clearly "Amen for over your dead body the lady must possess her inheritance". I am not here to pontificate on this illegality, immorality and antiquated cultural practice! It stinks! Women were born free just like men! Without women there will not be human race! Each gender was created for particular purpose! There will not be continuity of life without women! Men then decide that men's role is more important and then bestride the world subjugating women in name of culture! What is culture - way of life of a people, in that is imbedded grid engineered by the powerful to serve their particular interests. That is what men have done over time! Practices that will serve the interests of the powerful and men were inserted and handed down to us. Culture is adaptive, retentive, and cumulative my social science subject taught me! We are not meant to be static! We move with changing time and with education and knowledge and understanding! That is progress! It amounts to retrogression to keep harping on antiquated beliefs and practices and perpetuating them simply because our forebears practised such and handed them to us! I want us to read Emeka Ezenwugo, Emeka Ugwuonye and some of our daughters properly! Any culture that makes a particular gender lower in class or status is anachronistic and must be debased and deprecated! Dalunu! Yesterday at 1:49am · Like · 1
Remy Ilona Chinwike a popular transporter gave half of his empire to his daughter, & half & his ana obi to his son-according to Igbo culture. You didn't read my positions, b/c from what you wrote you didn't address them. A woman that has become a part of Awka through marriage cannot reasonably be expected to come & own land in the family she has left in Amawbia. If there is an invasion she'd be in awka & not at amawbia to defend the land. I applaud your 'fight' against wicked people howexer, but know thee that its not Igbo culture that they are drawing from. And that not only men are wicked. Many women are too. Yesterday at 2:53am via mobile · Like · 1
Chinwike Justice Oke-Nwosu: @Remy if a man buys land in Amawbia and has one daughter and no son, are you saying because this daughter is married to an Awka man distant relatives should take the father's land? What invasion? I own a land in Nsugbe - I do not need to be Nsugbe man to own a land there! Similarly a daughter from Amawbia who is married to Awka man does not need to live in Amawbia to be entitled to ownership! You are looking at this matter from ancient prism! That manner of thinking is what led to evil of "abandoned property" in River state where hoodlums and lazy people there believe in "son of soil" business! Who is talking of invasion and from who! You used invasion figuratively but that will not support position that you will hand over a man's property to an outsider because the outsider is a man and the true blood of the owner of the property is a woman. By the way it may even turn out that the man who wants to inherit the property may not even have blood relationship with the man he wants to defraud the daughter of her inheritance! The case I quoted is where a "bastard" (if i may use the word) conceived out of adultery is the one championing the case that our daughter is a woman and not entitled to her dad's estate. Bearing this in mind is even the motivation that made me to come out! I told the man that we first need to establish his genetic make up with the man he is fighting over his property to determine whether he should be in the vicinity in the first place! Remy that is my position Yesterday at 4:31am · Edited · Like · 1
Remy Ilona: Chinwike, I was specific about ana obi, which you don't seem to understand what makes it different from other 'lands' that a man may own or have possession of in Igboland. What distinguishes the ana obi from other lands? Who inherits it? You need to find the answers to these two questions. If my answers may help you, the ana obi is the ancestral land of a family or families. Kindred live on it. First born sons live on the 'core' of it, and give portions to their younger brothers to live on. Living together on the 'land' helps the family to keep the bonds of brotherhood alive. This was the ideal that our ancestors sought to maintain. Daughters don't inherit it because Igbos expect their daughters to marry, and share the 'inheritance' of their husbands. Also our ancestors want their daughters to focus on making their marriages to work. You would need to look at some of the surrounding cultures that give women part of the core property traditionally (not that Igbos don't). (Surprised that you could argue that some Igbo families don't give even houses to daughters, by your summing up what people get idu uno---pestle.....). The truth is that people give what they could afford to give. The divorce rates of your 'enlightened' peoples that don't mekpa umu nwanyi ahu are far higher, because the women have far higher stakes and interests in their maiden homes, and so seize any available opportunity to jump out of marriage. If a married daughter inherits ana obi, would she and her off-springs live on it? If they do, would they be contributing to the togetherness of their own families,i.e the ones they married into? Is the ideal that motivated the custom worth protecting, in spite of changing circumstances? Is it even worth the trouble to remain Igbo when you Chinwike can become British? You need to answer these questions. I do not think that the panacea for management of decline of a civilization, i.e 'wickedness by distant relatives' for example, is to wreck, and bring further divisions, more enmity etc, on an already sick society. And to suggest wrongly that distant relatives are always up to no good. People that bring meaningful development 'discuss'. They adapt and modify. They use moderation. Without a sound knowledge of anything, people tend to just become wreckers. So many persons that felt that they were enforcing change had ended up harming the fabric of the society that they thought that they were changing. 22 hours ago · Edited · Like · 3

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Barrister Val Iwuchukwu's comments about 'Studying The Jewish 'Tribe' of Nigeria

    Val Iwuchukwu
    I've read Remy Ilona's latest book STUDYING-THE JEWISH TRIBE OF NIGERIA. Revealing and convincing, it set aright distorted concepts of Igbo origin in simple narrative English and leads readers to clear knowledge of origin of Ndigbo. With this book the controversy of the origin of Igbos is put to rest. Thanks to the force that moved this illustrious Igbo son.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Igbo Origins- The pathway

The Igbos have began to take charge in this area. Careful studies have been settling the question. Our origins was deemed difficult to situate because while our neighbours contented themselves with creating myths, and stating that the myths were the accounts of their origins, we were contented to say that Gad's son Eri fathered the Igbos, and leave things like that. Myths are sexier, more attractive and complex than facts, so what we said did not attract many 'scholars' approval; Igbos and non Igbos alike. Should this be surprising? It shouldn't be, because of obvious reasons. The scholars were scholars but they were not trained to understand Igbo culture and history.Also because of afro-centricism many were loth to look at the evidence lying around everywhere, because in their thinking; the Igbos-a 'black' people, couldn't be related to the Israelis-'a white' people-not minding that not only are there no people that are black or white,but that there are Ethiopian Jews, Lemba Jews of Zimbabwe who are also dark-skinned, and that in Nigeria the Igbos are noted as ndi nwekariri ndi na acha ocha. Evidence that proves the origin of the Igbos is readily available. In the culture-Omenana, a concept that is even locatable in the Hebrew Bible. In the language. In the lore. In the history. And in many other accessible things.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Part of the 8th Review/Comment made about 'The Igbos and Israel: An Inter-cultural Study of the .....Largest Jewish Diaspora'-to be on AMAZON tonight------

•    Sunday
Ken Okafor
Remy, I will give my book review on Amazon is currently
being proofread by my friend. Shalom
Remy Ilona
What's your overall view of the book my brother?
Ken Okafor
Remy, this is a different review to the one I submitted for
proofreading, but overall, your book is absolutely brilliant to read.
Your book should be in every Igbo family home across the world because
this would bring Igbo people together and it is obvious that Omenena
is the catalyst for unity and pride within us.
This helped me to understand what Igbo culture is all about, due to
the similarities between Omenana and Judaism -  I highly recommend
your book, more than the likes of ………and……….. I found it harder to
relate to ……… and ………, as both brought excellent analysis of our
culture that featured in the Torah, but lacked practicality as to how
Igbo people perform traditional Omenana. On the other hand you
described different types of Igbo traditions very effectively and
articulately describe the spirituality, i.e, the reasons for many of
the traditions.  And on Omenena via Chukwu Abiama, ie how He’s
perceived in the Igbo religion – that’s the best part of the book.
I believe your book can help Igbos to restore faith in our culture and
language especially because of the association with Jewish philosophy.
This is the book for younger generation Igbos to understand what our
culture is all about, and its detailed comparison with the Jewish
tradition can help us to be proud Ndi Igbo.
Also, it provides an easy approach to read Omenana with Judaism
(especially your work on the book of Deuteronomy) that easily
described our culture. Hitherto I found it very complicated to
understand our culture. But with our connections to Israel it became
clear - .........................................................................
but they are currently reading your book with high interest as well as
……… and ……….’.
Overall, your book is eventually our last hope to make Igbo culture
alive and well. Also, I believe you are following the footsteps of the
great Jewish philosophers, your work is for all Jews, not just for
African Jewish communities.
Remy Ilona
My brother I can't thank you enough for your very kind words. Chukwu gozie gi.
I can't wait to see and read your review. I know it'll be un-put-downable.
Ken Okafor
No worries...sorry for the lateness of my review as I have been
working, but I do hope ……….. documentary will be selected because that
will help your book to be promoted during the …….. Jewish Festival
later this year.
Have you recently posted the small monograph?
Also, do you know when Daniel Lis is releasing his book regarding the
Igbo Jewish connection?
Remy Ilona
Nwanne I had it put in the mail last Thursday.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Explaining most clearly and concisely how Omenana is Israelite culture.

............................................ many thanks for your questions. Pondering over how to summarize 22 pages which was what I allocated to explaining this in I came up with the following. Now-the Torah are the 'things' that HaShem commanded us through Moshe to do, in the Land of Israel. G-d promised us that as long as we do those things, that we'll keep the Land, and get thrown off the Land, if we do not do those things. So we can say that the heart of the Torah 'are the things we'll do in the Land (of Israel)'. Omenana which is actually the phrase 'ome na ana' or 'ife ndi aya adi na eme na ana' is the phrase we use to identify the Igbo religion and or culture. Translated into English this means 'things that will be done in the land'. And now here it comes; every Igbo cultural practice and belief has been located in the Torah, and other Jewish instruments, and it is an Igbo belief that if one violates Omenana, that ana (the land) throws out or vomits the person (from the land). In the book the work is arranged in these sections-----------CHAPTER TWO: COMPARATIVE STUDY OF THE IDEAS UNDERLYING OMENANA AND JUDAISM OMENANA AND JUDAISM IGBO PERCEPTION OF GOD SOME IMPORTANT MATTERS IN OMENANA……………………………………………………

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Positions of the elder and priest in Igbo culture

In my part, that 'governing council' was made up of the males who have started to pay utu umunna. And the first among them is the onye ihi (okenye). The chief priest, and men of high title are not as important as him, because in Ozubulu, its our custom that okenye ka nze (the oldest man is more important than the wealthiest, strongest, most powerful and influential person). The eze Mmuo commands respect as the priest that he is, but he stands up, like we all do, when okenye anyi enters. Never seen a better or richer culture than Omenana.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Discussions on Igbo Religion and culture

Wonderful work nwanne m Alfred! This work of yours should be read and re-read by every Igbo. So much to gain from it. I agree with many of your positions, but I also have a few points that I have questions on. In pure Omenana does ani or ana as we would say in Ozubulu mean the 'earth', or the 'land'? When the late Sir Warrior sang 'ala Owerri...' he clearly meant the land/country/territory of Owerri. Nso ana in my locality means what the land, country, people forbid. If I say ana Ozubulu I may mean the earth of Ozubulu. I may also mean the land, country or territory of Ozubulu. I'm trying to discover when some Igbos deified the 'earth', and today in the Igbo religion ana is believed to be a deity. What's happening now helps me to understand how ana became an Igbo deity. What I'm still trying to figure out is when this happened, and where it began. An Igbo began a year or so ago to say that the Eri whom the Igbos that live in Aguleri, Umuleri, etc, have always recognized as one of their ancestors, was a god, a spirit being. This claim was made to back up another claim, and posted on the Internet. In time a person who wants to form a religion may read this, set up a shrine for Eri, forge and concoct some stories, even fabricate 'miracles', draw followers and adherents, and in the future Eri would be described as a deity of the Igbos. I have also seen Igbos claiming that the sky is an Igbo deity, and that the earth, another Igbo deity is his wife. I mentioned recently, how an Igbo added that Amadioha is the son of Chukwu. In my research I saw only one Deity among the Igbos. That Deity is Chukwu.

Examining wrong conclusions on Igbo Studies with Emeka Maduewesi

Its up to us to correct a lot of wrong conclusions reached by 'authorities' who were not really qualified to be authorities on the Igbo. He was hinting that the character was a mixture of Negros and North Africans, because of the lightness of his complexion. To him because the man was light complexioned, he must be a cross-breed-a mixture of Moors and Negros. But not only has evidence been found that Negroes once lived in even places as northerly as present day Iraq (alongside other groups/ peoples of other colors), but also that no group has just one color. Caucasians or Europeans have different colors. The differences may not be as clear as the differences between the colors of the Negroid (sub Saharan Africans), but still the blond, and the brunette have different colors. Nwanne Emeka Maduewesi thanks for bringing this up.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Religion on Igbo Culture 2

And in Ozubulu, if one saw exposed faeces, Omenana demands that one has to perform a minor purification-by breaking an egg, smearing the egg on the eyes, and exclaiming-'anya afuo m aru'. You can see again, how religion came in to enforce hygiene and decent sanitary conditions.

Religion in Igbo Culture, Hygiene and Disease Control

Nwanne Alfred I do not know why every or many aspect[s] of our culture have 'religion' in it. But my observation is that it is so. I had a talk about typhoid and other disease control, water supply in Igbo culture, and the Ogwui River in Amakwa, Ozubulu, 'ikwu nne m'; with nwanne Moore Black Chi Mmadike recently. Moore suggested that typhoid was not very common when we were growing up in Igboland. It occurred to me, and I mentioned that probably our ancestors, who received and handed over Omenana to us knew about disease control better than we do-I then recalled that in my locality, that folks were barred from fishing in many of the rivers, and streams that the people got their drinking water from. Till today people do not fish in Ogwui uno-I presume to keep the stream/river clean, and free from diseases. And how did our culture ensure that the stricture should be obeyed? Religion came in. Our ancestors said that the Mmuo that own the river would be angry with anyone who fished in Ogwui. You can see how religion came into something as secular as ensuring that the water supply of the community is clean.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Ruminations by Hebrews

  Remy Ilona
Ndi Igbo (Hebrews), I'm penning down the following with all sense of responsibility, with the hope that many will read between the lines, and get the real import of my words. I'm doing so to let everybody know my opinion, and how I see things about the parlous conditio
Most times its easier for a group to loose their freedom than to regain it. We lost our freedom when the British subdued us, and imposed a foreign way of life on us,(which a few Igbos at the time accepted as better). They also brought foreign institutions, and imposed them on us. Did we resist these? There is historical evidence that there was resistance; but the resistance was puny. In a few short years; actually less than 60 years majority of Ndi Igbo had accepted the foreign way of life as better than ours which had sustained us for thousands of years. Many did not just stop at declaring that ofe onye ozo ka nke nne ha tere uto, but progressed; I'd say retrogressed to doing everything possible to make sure that ofe nne ha should not be seen anywhere among the Igbos. We abandoned our culture and became enslaved. A people that still have their culture are free. If you don't wipe out a people's culture, but destroy all their physical structures, and even kill off most of their population, you've not dealt a mortal blow to the people. The people can be relied on to rise. Japan was on its knees after World War11. Today we know what Japan is, and its not because of American aid. A people without a way of life, goals and objectives would have received even greater aid, and mismanaged it. A few fellow benei Yisrael from Europe, who survived the Holocaust repossessed the land of Israel, and managed to set up a viable state in the ancient homeland of Israel. Not well informed people like to claim that Israel is strong because of American support. My counter is that the Jews did/do 99% of the work, and used the received support well, because those Jews who reconstituted Israel have a program. And they have a program because they have a way of life which gives Jews an objective to work for. I do not see us (Ndi Igbo) as having a well thought out program. What do we as a people want? Where do we want to go? What do we want to achieve and show to the world? We have a 'homeland' (Igboland), (my elder brother Reuven Kossover, says its rather a way station, and I know why he says so), but today what are the feeling, emotions and nexuses between even that land and the Igbo? Truthfully, many Igbos feel less secure in that land, than in non Igbo parts of Nigeria. Why???????????? Why are we simply incapable of making Igboland attractive to at least Ndi Igbo? Are we holding ourselves down, or are there external forces holding us down? I want to believe that we are holding ourselves down. When we agreed that our way of life was bad, and agreed that a foreign one which made Ndi Igbo slaves was better, we began what has led us to where we are today. We can get our freedom back, but we can only when we become free culturally. When we begin to think like Igbos (Hebrews), and for Igbos (Hebrews), much energy, resources, etc, that are being wasted will begin to be put to good use. We just have to rediscover who and what we are, and what our goals and objectives as a people ought to be, or are. If we don't take necessary steps, our children will see what we are seeing, and more, perhaps without even a land that they can call their own in Nigeria. If I say that more than 4/5th of Igbos live outsode Igboland presently, I won't be exaggerating. Persons following this should look at their families, and check who and who are still on the land, and as for those outside, who and who still comes home. I'll pause for now with a submission by an Igbo whom I see as a good thinker:

“It is not the responsibility of the governors in the East alone. It is the responsibility of all individuals and all communities to begin to create conditions that will secure and sustain the security of lives and property. Government is a mere abstraction if there are no people or systems to organize and govern. The sheer economic, cultural, and social implication of what is happening now in Igbo land must be clearly placed before everyone - and let us decide whether to live with or die trying to change it. It is better to die than to live without freedom. But the core important questions are these:
A) Who is driving the Igbo, especially its elite and middle class out of Igbo land?
B) Why? To what end? There seems to me to be a real situation here in which the Igbo, once again unwilling to safeguard their own unique personal and collective interests will allow the massive evacuation of the Igbo people from their homelands into the margins of the urban ghettoes where they will live in fear and at the edge of culture. Perhaps the true equivalence of the "Jewish exile" is happening right before our very eyes, and we
are busy complaining and wringing our hands. Two hundred years from now, when a new people have resettled Igbo land, and become more dominant, and we would have ceded the greatest gifts of our heritage -land and its culture - the Igbo would then be fully the rootless, homeless people of the future. But may our ancestors never permit that we allow this”.
Like ·  ·Unfollow Post · Share · about an hour ago
Obinna-nwobi Obinwanne likes this.Flowing Rivers Of-Peace I asked my dad once why he "escaped" from Igboland to settle in Lagos n he sid it was "juju" and "wickedness" of the people of the land? I probed him further and found out that it was just a misconception n age long misundestanding. I've been home and I can tell u that there r nt more than 1000 pple living currently in my village and they r mostly the aged. Infact my village is so backward that u can count the number of brick houses there with most of them made of mud and so far placed from one another that u can walk a full 30mins before u get to someone else's mud house. Funny tin is that the pple that came out of that place r mostly abroad with many houses scattered in big cities like lagos. Infact I heard that someone from my place has 5000 houses in Abuja and he sells each one for 20million naira yet he has just one small house at home. Too bad. Funny tin is that the "jazz" they r so scared of and that mad we all run away can be found more abundantly in the West yet our pple are trooping down to these places in their droves. Its unbecoming of us. And that is why they will keep hating us because they feel that we left our land to come and struggle with them for the limited natural resource in their place.
about an hour ago via mobile · Like · 1Flowing Rivers Of-Peace I think another serious problem is that the great river Niger has not been dredged. Once it is dredged, we would come back home.
about an hour ago via mobile · Like · 1Flowing Rivers Of-Peace I spoke with Prof Catherine Acholonu and she adviced me that I shd make sure I go back home and develop my place and I wud do my own share of the work at the rite time.
about an hour ago via mobile · Like · 1Reuven Kossover Remy, look at your Ethiopian brethren. In Ethiopia, they were called "falasha" - Amharic for stranger. HERE, they wear the uniform of the IDF, sling M16's or Tavors over their shoulders, open restaurants and speak the language of the land - HEBREW. Most of them do it better than I do. When you stop looking at the Eastern Region of Nigeria as "home" and stop saying "Igbo" and say instead, "Ivri", MENTALLY you will direct yourselves northeast - towards your TRUE HOME - ISRAEL. Time grows short. Gog strides on the stage of History NOW. And History is like a train. It does NOT wait for passengers to board beyond a certain time.

Ultimately, people with white skins like me will find themselves in the minority in the revived HEBREW nation of Israel that is to come. You outnumber us. So do the Pashtuns. EVEN AMONG JEWS IN ISRAEL, white people are a minority. So, in spite of the racism of the present Ashkenazi ruling élite, war will break that élite's power. And you will find open arms here in Israel - AS HEBREWS. Serious identity change is on the way, Remy.
53 minutes ago · Edited · Unlike · 1Remy Ilona Big Brother Reuven Kossover, I know and understand what you mean. I know that I'm ha Ibri. I know that I moved from ha Ibri to Igbo/Ibo. But many of my people need this knowledge too, and the only way to get them to the necessary awareness is to take ...See More
41 minutes ago · Edited · LikeRemy Ilona Flowing Rivers Of-Peace (this your name is very funny)ndi Igbo run away from home because ndi Igbo believe that Igboland is filled with wickedness, idolatry, poverty, sinfulness and other evils. In time; at this present time this belief which was not based on facts has actually brought in wickedness, idolatry, poverty, sinfulness, and other evils. If you believe long enough that you are a pagan, be sure that you'll become one. Igbos who know next to nothing about Igbo history and culture have become 'great scholars', and they specialize in manufacturing gods, spirits, etc, for a people who have only one God in their culture. The 'Igbos who convinced you that you have deities created your problems. Non Igbos and Igbos who are illiterate on everything Igbo, have no holiness in them, but are addressed as men of god by contemporary Igbos now move around Igboland declaring that everywhere in Igboland is filled with demons, witches, wizards, principalities and powers. Too sad that our people have refused to take our history seriously. We all here are old enough that we met many of our forebears that many modern Igbos now believe that they were evil idolators. We know that many were perfectly holy men and women, (my mother said that my grandfather Eze ofido did not utter a falsehood from when she entered his family as a young bride till he died full of years). That he touched his mouth with his ofo during his prayers to Chi ukwu in the mornings, and said, 'may falsehood never issue from my lips. My grandmother whom I spent many of my vacations with was holy. She made sure that all the orphans in her kindred never went to bed hungry. So, as perceptions are at-times as strong as realities, your father has 'good' reasons for fleeing. I recommend that the serious and interested study Igbo history and culture, from the books written by scholars, verify what they read by on the spot investigations, and catch up by getting a J.H.Hertz Pentateuch and Haftorah.
32 minutes ago · Like · 1Obinna-nwobi Obinwanne Cultural revival...we need it so badly.
18 minutes ago via mobile · Unlike · 1Remy Ilona I was talking recently with some of the ablest Igbos that I've met in my life. Ndi Igbo have enormous capital. Ndi Igbo practically built/are building Nigeria. So, the problem is not dearth of resources. The Igbos have tremendous manpower. Many non Igb...See More
17 minutes ago · Like · 2Remy Ilona Obinna-nwobi, yes cultural revival, and it'll be started by dissemination of information about Omenana-which you know that its what we do here. You should boost the work by bringing in your serious friends so that they can learn. We don't like sleepers. If you get them aboard, get serious and active, they'll follow you.
12 minutes ago · Like · 1Obinna-nwobi Obinwanne You are right brother.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Harry if I am to say, the 'tithe' should still be applied in spite of whatever we still give, to charity, as tzedakah, etc. Perhaps I feel this way because I witnessed what trying faithfully to apply Torah principles achieved in a society that hadn't much wealth. We (the Igbo society) generates billions of $, not naira now, but because most don't follow the Torah principles, we have hungry and destitute Igbos at last. When I was growing up I did not see a beggar in Igboland. Now we have them. I stand to be corrected. The Torah is too perfect. The best that can be done is to follow its dictates as closely as possible wherever one finds himself or herself.