ODINALA MAGAZINE PUBLICATION…The Success Story

By: Atueyi Ifeanyi 

The Center for Igbo Arts and Culture (CIAC), in its effort towards the strengthening and growth of the Igbo language and culture, in December, 2010, commenced bi-annual publication of ODINALA, the first bi-lingual English/Igbo Resource Magazine assembled to advance the fight for resuscitating our dying Igbo language. The magazine is dedicated solely to the arts, culture and essence of NdiIgbo, striving to ensure their place in our national cultural heritage.

 

ODINALA is not only packaged to awaken interest in Igbo, but also serves as a handy tool for the learning of the language and understanding the people, while sustaining same among our children and people in the Diaspora, who are eager to rediscover themselves and stay in touch with their heritage.

 

ODINALA is usually some 80 to 90 pages long and covers areas of special interest to both NdiIgbo and other communities. In addition to an appropriate cover story, it presents sections on Igbo Festivals, Heritage, Lessons, Foods and Special Dishes; Traditional Communication among NdiIgbo, Sports, Igbo Proverbs, Interviews of Prominent Igbo Personalities, Igbo Word Search and Crossword Puzzles, while addressing numerous other interests.

 

In ODINALA maiden edition, Igbo-Ukwu Historic Artifacts & Significance to Igbo Untold Civilization & Technology as well as the Poor State of the Museum were captured as the cover story. Also presented were Mmemme Omumu Nwa (childbirth ceremony), Omumu Igbo, Igbo Cuisines, Osi ite, Endangered Igbo foods, and other key features including Traditional Information System in Igboland & Sports. Our Icon was Engr. Philip Emeagwali.

 

Under the second edition, a section was devoted to Igbo Foods, ranging from their preparation to the Clarion Call by Dr. Maikel A.N. Ejiofor for NdiIgbo to return to the consumption of our indigenous dishes which, over time, have provided wholesome nutrition and medicinal protection to our people. Other features included Love & Courtship in Igbo marriage, and a write-up on Chisom Mildred Okpala who was ranked number one in the world among all the applications for Harvard University scholarship, herein presented as the Igbo Maiden of the year, while the Icon was Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

In the cover story of ODINALA 3, Dr. Uche L. Igbokwe, discussed the various Threats to our Igbo Heritage while Igbo Language Summer Lessons was the subject of the Special Reports. Igbo Cultural Events showcased in Abuja, particularly during the Anambra State Day Celebration on November 12, 2011, was reported to be an encouraging dimension towards projecting the Igbo Race. Under Features, Law Mefor wrote on Overcoming the Nshiko Mentality among NdiIgbo while Nduka Nzedinma, through Native Stranger, exhorted NdiIgbo to forgo the garb of pretending to be Oyibo and accept Igbo as what God has created them to be. Dr. Sam Mbakwe was then featured as our Icon.

 

In ODINALA 4, the cover story on Facial Scarification by Prof. E.C. Orji, discussed the ancient custom and form of recognizing dignity among some Igbo communities. Also covered was Igbo Language in Trouble, a lecture delivered at Abuja entirely in Igbo by Prof. Pita Ejiofor on the numerous challenges facing our Language. Other articles included NdiIgbo and Economic Nationalism by Chiemeka Iwuoha, NdiIgbo and the Lost Ark of Covenant by Ali Ibrahim, Igbo in Fading Shadows by Ikenna Emewu, Traditional Multi-Door Courthouse by Egnr. Edward Ihemebiri, and other topical issues, with Sen. Uche Chukwumerije as our Icon.

 

Under ODINALA 5, the magazine presented such subjects as Where The Rain Began Beating Igbo Values, NdiIgbo, 2015 & Nigeria Power Game, Igbo Masquerade Festival, NdiIgbo and The Plight of The Girl Child, A Traditional Multi-Door Courthouse, New Yam Festival in Igbo-Ukwu, Sen. Ken Nnamani as the Icon, amongst other presentations.

 

The cover story in ODINALA 6 was NdiIgbo In Nigeria: A Quest for Survival and Prosperity by Chieke Ihejirika. A Special Report on Dr F. C Ogbalu was also featured. Other articles included Igbo Nation: Not an Impossible Dream by James C. Aguzie, Tears for My Culture by Ezeibe Emeka, What Went Wrong With Igbo Leadership? by Victor Uzoma Nwankwo and A Rebel With a Cause by Kamarudeen Ogundele and Kehinde Ore. There were write-ups on Ogbono Soup and Omumu Asusu Igbo. Under Interview, Nze Raphael Ozoekwe Udeze bared his thoughts on some aspects of Igbo culture and tradition.

ODINALA 7 captured Dr. Emma Enekwechi’s Sorry State of NdiIgbo in Nigeria.  The Special Report covered the burial of Professor Chinua Achebe and Igbo Heroes symposium held at Cana House, Awka. Together with Igbo Foods, Arts and Language, this edition covered the recipe and process of preparing Ofe Ora (Ora Soup). Professor Chinua Achebe and Dr. Akanu Ibiam, men of honour and integrity were the Icons, respectively, under ODINALA 6 and 7.

In ODINALA 8, the cover story was NdiIgbo Think Home by Sixtus Chibueze Ezennaya and our Icon, Cyprian Odiatu Ekwensi, one of the great African writers of our time.  Two different ways of preparing Abacha or Biafran Salad, a delicacy in most areas of Igbo land were laid out under Igbo Foods. In the Arts section, was featured The 1015th Annual Festival of the Recognition of Eze Nri in Anaocha LGA of Anambra State, the Administrator of the oldest Kingdom or holy city in Igbo land. As in all editions, twenty Igbo proverbs were provided together with their English translations and meanings.  Our interview with Professor Chinyere Ohiri-Aniche, President of the Linguistics Association of Nigeria and an enthusiastically active member of CIAC was presented.

The cover story of ODINALA 9 was Prof Okey Ndibe’s write up on Biafra, the Ostrich Mentality & Nigeria’s Tragedy, detailing why Nigeria as a Country would continue to be haunted unless government addressed the sore of the Biafran War. International Colloquium on Igbo Question in Nigeria was the subject of the Special Report, and under Features, Sabella O. Abidde pictured NdiIgbo as a people staggering for a leader. Our Icon was Dr. Innocent Chukwuma (C.E.O, Innoson Motors), while Azuh Amatus presented a piece on DSTV and the Politics of Igbo Channel. The magazine drew the curtain under the Interview Segment with Chief Mbazuluike Amaechi, an elder statesman and first Republic Minister of Aviation.

 

ODINALA 10 presents various topics and subject areas. The cover story on Reason The Presidency Still Eludes NdiIgbo by Azuka Onwuka serves as a critical appraisal of NdiIgbo regarding the just concluded 2015 general election. Under Special Report, were presented the Seminar for Igbo Women in FCT and a paper delivered by the Center’s Chairman, Ezeani Dr J.K Okoye during a meeting of Ohaneze NdiIgbo in Suleja, Niger State, titled: Igbo Culture & The Need To Uphold It. Writing on NdiIgbo, Guinea Pigs & Bashing in Lagos, under the Features Section, Clement Udegbe focuses on the high level hatred of the Igbo man by the Yoruba. Our Icon was Richard Iherigbo Ihetu, a.k.a Dick Tiger, one of the greatest boxers from the African continent and the one who brought the first world championship match to the continent of Africa. Under People and Town, our search light beams on Ogbunike Cave and Its Untapped Potential.

In ODINALA 11, the cover story addresses Vanishing Igbo and NdiIgbo wherein Victor Anyaegbuna advises that rather than embrace English, NdiIgbo should make Igbo the first language of our kids. The Seminar for NdiIgbo 2015 is the subject of the Special Report, and under the Features Section, where several papers are presented, Prof Okey Ndibe believes that night has fallen on Nigeria now passing through a trial period. Gowon, Jos Crisis and the Nemesis of Biafran Blood by Obinna Akukwe recounts the tragedies of the Nigerian/Biafran civil war. Under People and Town, Okey Maduforor beams his light on Imo Awka Festival, a cultural outing of the people of Awka community and a popular annual celebration in Awka Town.

ODINALA 12 comes with various topics on topical issues. The cover story on Biafra the Federal Government Genocide Against NdiIgbo by Dr Emma Enekwechi, strongly refutes the assertion with facts, that Nigeria’s 1966 coup was Igbo putsch. The Need To Teach Three Major Nigeria’s Indigenous Languages in FCT Primary Schools, statement by Ezeani Dr J. K Okoye, is the subject of our Special Report. Our Icon is Emeka Anyaoku, former Nigeria’s Foreign Minister and Commonwealth Secretary General who served in various capacities in the world affairs. The recipe and process of preparing Ofe Achara with Akpụrụakpụ Egusi is presented under Igbo Foods. The magazine rounds off with the Interview Segment featuring Chief Pete Edochie, Nigeria’s veteran actor cum broadcaster.

In our usual format, ODINALA 13 presents various topics on burning issues. The cover story on Nigeria Cannot Survive Without The Igbo by Femi Aribisala, admits that NdiIgbo are the bedrock of Nigeria but they need to speak with one voice for them to actualize their dream of getting presidential position in Nigeria.

The Need To Teach Three Major Nigeria’s Indigenous Languages in FCT Primary Schools, a statement by Ezeani Dr J. Kanayo Okoye, is the subject of our Special Report delivered at a Press Conference held at CIAC Headquarters on February 22, 2016, Ezeani used the medium to charge the Federal Government to reinsert the study of indigenous languages in the Country’s education curriculum.

Under the Features Section, Are South East Governors And Leaders Cowards? asked by Steve Oko is the first paper seeking why South-East governors and po­litical leaders have maintained silence in the face of the perceived persecution of their people and on issues affecting the general well-being and welfare of NdiIgbo, contrary to reactions in other geo-political zones. Dr Emma Enekwechi rounds off his Biafra the Federal Government Genocide Against NdiIgbo. He condemns United Nation’s silence as Britain and Nigeria unleashed the worst pogrom on NdiIgbo during the Biafra war, and appeals to the world to lend a helping hand towards actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra. More Biafra To Come, by Theodore Nnachi, frowns at Biafra groups cropping up just to make money rather than fighting the cause of NdiIgbo. He believes that if Igbos do not rise to speak as one united family, the agitation for new Biafra groups as money ventures becomes inevitable. For him, unless Igbo land is developed, there will be no peace but more agitation in the South East.

 

Need To Preserving Dying Igbo Customs And Values by Okechukwu Onuegbu, chides NdiIgbo for having little regard for their culture.  He cautions Igbo in Diaspora to soft-pedal in their title-taking bastardization which has reduced the authority of the once revered kingship institution. Acho Orabuchi comes with his rhetoric question: NdiIgbo What Is Your Fate? He laments the deplorable state of the South Eastern States in Nigeria. According to him, NdiIgbo are suffering all kinds of dis­criminatory actions by the Federal government and have been consistently and systematically marginal­ized simply because they fought a civil war.  He is optimistic that a lasting peace will come among NdiIgbo but advises the Federal government to shun tribalism, nepo­tism and corruption because they are in­imical to economic growth.

 

Our Icon is late Uche Okeke, renowned Nigeria’s Artist, Painter, Professor of Fine Arts and the Uli master, born on 30 April 1933 in Nimo, Njikoka Local Government Area of Anambra State. He earned numerous honours and international awards. Prof Okeke bowed to mother earth on January 5, 2016 after a protracted illness. Under People and Town, Omabe Masquerade Festival of Imufu Community, Enugu State is presented. The community is known for celebrating its rich culture, the Omabe Masquerade, in grand style every five years, witnessed by thousands of tourists from far and wide.

 

ODINALA 13 presents our usual coverage of Igbo Foods. In this edition, the recipe and process of preparing Ofe Nsala are enlightened.  Under Arts, CIAC beams its light on the Osu Caste System. Generally, three classes of people are recognized namely: the “free born” (Diala), the enslaved outcasts (Osu, Ohu or Oru) and those prone-to-die (Ume). The widespread discrimination directed against the Osu in the past has now ebbed as a result of civilization and Christianity. In fact, many communities have abolished the osu caste system altogether.

 

Other features herein covered include Igbo Proverbs, Igbo Lesson, Straight From the Dailies, Igbo Word Search, Readers’ Reactions to previous ODINALA editions, Photo Fiesta, Igbo Fashion, ODINALA Magazine Success Story and the CIAC Agenda for year 2017.

 

The magazine wraps up with the Interview Segment featuring Chief Chekwas Okorie, former Presidential candidate and National Chairman of United Progressive Party (UPP) after his departure from his other co-founded party, the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA). He is the fourth Nigerian to launch two political parties in his life time. Chief Okorie was a close friend of late Biafra leader, Chief Odimegwu Emeka Ojukwu.

 

ODINALA magazine no doubt, has been a success story since 2010, and one of the avenues for promoting our language and culture as a major force not only within the Nigerian state but also on the international setting. As we charge all to join hands in making this publication stronger, we are ever grateful to those whose support and promotion have constituted the instrumentality towards the success of this enterprise.

To God be the glory!!!

PAST EDITION COVERS

ODINALA TEAM

 

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF/PUBLISHER
Ezeani Dr. J.Kanayo Okoye
KSM,KSS, FNSE
EDITORIAL TEAM
Ezeani Dr. J. Kanayo Okoye
Dr.(Chief) M.A. Njide Ejiofor
Chief Pat Chidolue
Engr. Edward Ihemebiri
Mrs. Cordelia Uboma
MANAGING EDITOR
Atueyi Ifeanyi
ACCOUNTANT/LOGISTICS
MANAGER
Mrs. Josephine Okeke
RESEARCH
Atueyi Ifeanyi
IGBO TRANSLATOR
Okwy Francis
PRODUCTION MANAGERS
Atueyi Ifeanyi
Obiora Nwadinobi
ADVERTISEMENT SOURCING
EXECUTIVE
Nelson Ndefo
Tel: 08151605442
GRAGHICS/DESIGN
Solomon Ugochukwu
(Solomedia International)
Tel: 08038670947, 09071136515
CENTRE FOR IGBO ARTS &
CULTURE, (CIAC), ABUJA.
42 Tunis Street, Wuse Zone 6,
FCT – Abuja.
www.igbocentre.org.ng
www.odinalamagazine.com
igbocenter@yahoo.com

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