Every ceremony conducted by the Igbo’s indulge in the breaking of Kolanut, it is an ancient tradition that has a tremendous impact on Ndigbo.
Kolanut in Igbo land is regarded as a sacred fruit. It is revered, respected and almost adored. It plays an important role in the celebration of Igbo culture and tradition.
Indeed, it serves as harbinger of peace. It has taken an unparallel position in the cultural life of Ndigbo.
It, however, must be clarified at this point that there are two species of kola nut known to Ndigbo. The one grown in Igbo land which bears ‘oji Igbo’ and the one grown in Western part of the country but consumed mainly by the people from the North.
It is referred to as ‘oji Hausa or gworo’, which is not used to perform any traditional or cultural ceremonies in Igbo land.
It is merely consumed sparingly here in Igbo land just for consumption sake. It is only ‘oji Igbo’ that is used in Igbo traditional or cultural ceremonies.
Kola nut has been so elevated in Igbo land that no marriage ceremonies, installation of traditional rulers, resolution of disputes and cultural festivals, among others, are ever done without performing the kola nut rituals which must be done in Igbo language.
So for Ndigbo of the South East geo-political zone of Nigeria, kola nut means a lot of things to them. It is the first thing to be served to a visitor as they believe that it is part of culture to do this.
Oji Igbo is important in Igbo Iand because:
- We use it to call our ancestors in prayer (OFO)
2. It is the used to welcome visitors
3. It serve as a mediator between the ancestors and the living
4. Kolanut symbolizes unity.
5. It represents good omen, love and togetherness
6. It is the most important cultural fruit in Igbo land
7. It symbolizes life and good health, reconciliation, and integrity.
Lolo Ijeoma Njoku Obinwannem News writer Oct 25, 2021