Abbi is a hamlet in the Uzo Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State. It consists of seventeen communities Abbi is a hamlet in the Uzo Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State. It consists of seventeen communities


Abbi is a hamlet in the  of Enugu State. It consists of seventeen communities, most of which have their ancestral roots in Nri, Njikoka Local Government Area, Anambra State, and Igala, Benue State. Ozo titleship was established in Abbi by an Enugu Abbi resident known as “Ezikembosha”.

When Agu Ukwu Nri was being crowned, Ezikembosha visited them and saw how they did things. On his return, he started the process of acquiring the Ozo title, and to this day, Enugwu Abbi is revered and renowned for being the village that introduced the Ozo title to Abbi. Ezekembosha supported everyone instead of being self-centred. Before bringing it to his village, he first made a man from Isiama village a coronation. Currently, Enugu Abbi has the second position while Isiama village is revered and recognised as the first village to gain from the title. Before the Ozo title was instituted in Abbi, the people of Abbi used to adopt the titles of Ogbuefi and Ogbuanya for men and loloanyi for women who had distinguished themselves in the functioning of the village democracy.

The taking of the Ozo title is a long-standing custom in the region; the free-born and well-to-do members of society are the ones who bear the title. The initiation process was laborious and involved a complex ritual celebration with an abundance of food and drink. With the advent of Christianity, the Ozo title has lost its ceremonial character and is now open to anyone who wishes to join; the people’s regard for an Ozo title man was once great and well-known, but in more recent times, Christianity and Western civilization have altered the status quo. The traditional customs and rituals associated with the Ozo title have slowly faded away, replaced by a more modern and inclusive approach. Despite these changes, the historical significance of the Ozo title still holds a special place in the hearts of the community. While the reverence for Ozo titleholders may have diminished over time, the title itself remains a symbol of prestige and honour among those who still uphold the traditions of the past.

Christianity is opposing the ceremonial component of the title, which served as the foundation for the requirement that people who assumed it act sincerely and truthfully in all of their interactions. This led to the Ozo title men, who are renowned for their integrity and tranquillity, losing the respect of their people because of their violations. Generally speaking, the Ozo Title Society is not just strong but also has the last word in all civil cases falling within its purview.

The holder of an Ozo title is praised with “otuji,” and assimilating into Ozo culture is a complex and time-consuming process that takes their entire lifetime. The recipient of the title is bestowed with nobility and possibly royalty. This means that to be eligible for initiation, a person must be a free-born member of the community that bestows the title upon him. Based on information gleaned from group discussions, the Ozo title is both an embodiment and a hub of Igbo traditions related to art, music, drama, ceremonies, and the embodiment of power, represented by the word “Ofo.” In this instance, “Ofo” refers to the employees of the office, who are obligated to constantly maintain the truth.

By revitalising their communities’ cultural legacy and enabling the yearly extraction of its most attractive elements, title holders operate as a bridge between their communities and the past. He made the argument that the Ozo title is crucial to portraying and showcasing the cultural legacy of the populace. Along with upholding public and private morality, leading a holy life, and adhering to all taboos, religious ceremonies, and rituals honouring the community’s gods and goddesses are also required of the person assuming the title. Regardless of age, the holders of the Ozo title are considered to be of noble rank and are given preference at all public feasts and entertainments. An Ozo title used to be a banker of the community because the community has enormous trust in him and they are seen as a symbol of justice; the title is a revealer of a person’s status in the community and anyone with questionable character or whose paternity is in doubt is carefully excluded. It would be an insult for anyone to address him in public other than his title name.

The Ozo title being the highest ceremony in Abbi has the capacity of attracting crowds from far and near. It is usually a great occasion and highly valued especially during traditional celebrations in the community. The title holders are always seen as first-class citizens.


Written by Jideofo Okibe,(Obinwannem News correspondent Enugwu State)
Date: April 17, 2024
Ubochi Ori Mmiri
Published by Ngozi Odoh (Obinwannem Nsukka Office Secretary)

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