“Abon Ibil in Calabar” celebrate Bakor New Yam Festival

“Abon Ibil in Calabar” celebrate Bakor New Yam Festival
“Abon Ibil in Calabar”, a non – political group comprising sons and daughters of Ibil in Nkum Clan of Ogoja residing in Calabar, Cross River State, have celebrated the 2018 Bakor New Yam Festival. The celebration was held yesterday at the residence of Honourable Patrick Uguge, a member of the group and former member representing Ogoja Constituency in Cross  River State House of Assembly.


A cross section of “Abon Ibil in Calabar” at the event

Speaking at the occasion, Chief Patrick Ilok, Chairman of Abon Ibil in Calabar, stated that: “What is happening here today is a sign that there is a lot that we can do together in future, if we remain together. The essence of coming together is to recognize what our fathers held in high esteem. The new yam celebration is the culture of our people. It is our heritage. We are here to sustain that heritage.”

He enjoined members of the group to bequeath that heritage to their children, for the sake of posterity.

Similarly, Mr. Cletus Agboje, a retired Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) who led some sons and daughters of Nkim Clan of Ogoja residing in Calabar to the occasion, commended Abon Ibil in Calabar for organizing the event. He said that plans are underway to organize a larger event involving all sons and daughters of Nkim, Nkum and Ekajuk clans of Ogoja Local Government Area residing in Calabar.

Also, retired CSP Agboje  disclosed that there is a proposal to change the Bakor New Yam Festival’s annual date of September 15th to a convenient Saturday in September, in order to accommodate the needs of Civil Servants and others whose official duties prevent them from fully enjoying the festival whenever it holds on weekdays. He said that the proposal would soon be discussed and agreed upon by representatives of Bakor clans of Ogoja and Ikom Local Government Areas.

According to him, Bakor communities harvest the best yams in Cross River State. Therefore, he enjoined them to unitedly showcase their natural resources to the world in befitting festivals.

Yesterday’s celebration of Bakor New Yam Festival by Abon Ibil in Calabar attracted guests, including Chief Peter Ojie, Special Adviser on Political Affairs to the Governor of Cross River State. Chief Ojie also served as Chairman,  Central Planning Committee of North Fest 2017, a festival that was organised last year by the people of Northern Senatorial District of Cross River State.

The Bakor New Yam festival is celebrated by some clans of Ogoja and Ikom Local Government Areas of Cross River State. Such clans share dialectical and cultural similarities. “Bakor” is a word that translates to “come and take” in English Language. All Bakor communities use that word.

Cornelius Ellah
Twitter: @lin_cornellah
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