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Traditional Rite of Passage: Rivers Community Celebrates Iria Festival

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The annual Iria festival in Ogu kingdom, a community in the Okrika Local Government Area of Rivers State, has once again gained attention on social media due to its ceremony that marks the transition of young virgins into womanhood.

According to a report by PUNCH, the Iria festival, which is a celebration of womanhood, is an ancient tradition of the Okrika people and is organized by various towns, particularly during the months of December and January.

This event, which has its origins dating back to the 16th century, continues to generate excitement among locals and outsiders alike, as people eagerly anticipate the last three to four months of the year to witness maidens being initiated into womanhood.

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More than just a form of entertainment, the Iria festival is also viewed as an annual competition, providing families in Okrika with the opportunity to showcase the chastity of their daughters as they present their virgin daughters and prepare them for the “fattening room,” where they are nourished with meals such as pounded yam mixed with pounded plantain and fresh fish.

Photos from this year’s event have become viral on social media.

 

Credit: X|AskPHPeople, PH_Socials

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Appeal to Soun: Farmers in Ogbomoso Seek End to Herders’ Attacks [PHOTOS]

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Farmers in Oriire Local Government in the Ogbomoso geo-political zone of Oyo State are raising alarm over repeated attacks on their farms.

During a protest at the palace of the Soun of Ogbomoso, Oba Afolabi Ghandi Olaoye, the farmers sought the traditional ruler and other stakeholders’ intervention to protect them from incessant farm attacks.

Chief Aremu Ogundare, the spokesperson for the protesters and head of Kedo Arigbeyo, representing three villages in Oriire Local Government – Kedo Arigbeyo, Kedo Salami, and Mosunmaje, expressed their plight.

Ogundare lamented about the persistent destructive activities of the herders and the adverse impact on their livelihoods. He stated, “Cows have become a menace to us, and the problem escalated about four or five years ago. We no longer enjoy farming; all the cassava we cultivated were destroyed by them, and no one has any cassava on the farm again. Then, the cashew farms we thought of falling back on, they would take their cows there in the night to eat them off. To feed our families now is hard; we can’t train our children in school, and those in higher institutions have returned because we couldn’t raise funds to sponsor them any longer. Feeding is also a problem. That’s the reason we came here with a save-our-soul message.”

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He added, “We discussed it several times; we were at the police station; we reported to the local government chairman; none yielded any solution. They persisted. They macheted us, and oftentimes they would kill anyone who resisted them. Women can’t go to the farm any longer; even we men venture out in fear, out of compunction, because we must feed our families. We are fed up; we are helpless; that’s the reason we have come to seek the assistance of our royal father.”

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The plea from Ogbomoso farmers to Soun to halt recurring herders’ attacks [PHOTOS]

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In the Ogbomoso geo-political zone of Oyo State, farmers from Oriire Local Government have raised concerns about continuous attacks on their farms.

They expressed their grievances during a protest held at the palace of the Soun of Ogbomoso, Oba Afolabi Ghandi Olaoye, on Thursday.

Appealing to the traditional ruler and other stakeholders, the farmers sought assistance in preventing ongoing attacks on their farms.

The protesters’ spokesperson, Chief Aremu Ogundare, who also serves as the head of Kedo Arigbeyo, indicated that the protesters represented three villages in Oriire Local Government: Kedo Arigbeyo, Kedo Salami, and Mosunmaje.

He lamented that they had to seek the monarch’s assistance due to the persistent destructive activities of the herders.

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He stated: “Cows have become a menace to us; the problem escalated about four or five years ago. We no longer find farming enjoyable; all the cassava we cultivated were destroyed by them, and no one has any cassava on the farm again.

“Then, the cashew farms we thought of falling back on, they would take their cows there in the night to eat them off. It has become difficult to feed our families; we can’t afford to send our children to school, and those in higher institutions have returned because we couldn’t raise funds to sponsor them any longer. Feeding is also a problem. That’s why we have come here with a save-our-soul message.

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“We have discussed it several times; we went to the police station; we reported to the local government chairman, but none of these actions yielded any solution. The attacks persisted. They have injured us with machetes, and at times they have killed anyone who resisted them. Women can’t go to the farm anymore, and even men venture out in fear, out of compunction, as we must feed our families.

“We are frustrated and desperate, which is why we have sought the assistance of our royal father.”

The post The plea from Ogbomoso farmers to Soun to halt recurring herders’ attacks [PHOTOS] appeared first on NewsNow Nigeria.

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Gov Radda instructs unwilling recently recruited Katsina teachers to step down

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Recently, Governor Dikko Umaru Radda of Katsina State has urged public school teachers who were unwillingly posted to promptly resign. This call came as N4.05 billion grants were disbursed to 150 selected primary schools as part of the “Transforming Education System at State Level (TESS)” program.

The initiative, launched at Shagumba Primary School in Batagarawa Local Government Area, demonstrates Governor Radda’s dedication to addressing education sector challenges.

Governor Radda clarified that the selected schools were chosen based on specific criteria including the extent of disrepair, the number of students in nearby communities, and the lack of water, sanitation, and hygiene facilities.

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Under the TESS program, School-Based Management Committees (SBMCs) are responsible for overseeing the prudent use of allocated funds. Governor Radda urged these committees to ensure transparency and efficient utilization of the grants for their intended purposes.

In response to concerns about the recruitment of public school teachers, the governor’s directive mandates those who rejected postings to resign, creating opportunities for eager candidates waiting for appointments. He stressed the importance of teacher punctuality and urged the education authorities to ensure teachers attend lessons promptly.

Governor Radda issued a stern warning against insubordination and emphasized a zero-tolerance approach to teachers and staff neglecting their duties without valid reasons.

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To further engage the community, the governor encouraged education stakeholders, especially community members, to regularly visit schools, monitor lesson delivery, assess teacher attendance, and report incidents of truancy or absenteeism.

Binta Abdulmumini, the coordinator of TESS, expressed confidence in the program’s potential to reintegrate out-of-school children in Katsina back into the educational system. She noted that the governor’s multifaceted approach signifies a determined effort to improve the quality of education and address issues hindering the state’s educational progress.

The post Gov Radda instructs unwilling recently recruited Katsina teachers to step down appeared first on NewsNow Nigeria.

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