On the auspicious Saturday of August 26th, 2023, the 7th edition of Ghigho Aghofen unfolded, marking a momentous occasion in the Warri Kingdom. The timing of this event synchronized seamlessly with the second coronation anniversary of His Majesty Ogiame Atuwatse III CFR, infusing an extra layer of vibrancy into the ongoing celebrations.
Distinguished dignitaries, including Mr. Christopher Tarka, Chief of Staff to the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, and a representative of the Jaja of Opobo, graced the occasion. The air was filled with excitement as Ijala Ikeren, Ajaetan, and Ifiekporo communities paraded around the palace walls adorned in elegant dresses, their dance steps breathing life into the flag symbolizing unity and fraternity as inhabitants and custodians of the royal land.
In a symbolic gesture, the flags of the three communities were gracefully lowered, making way for the ascent of the Ikpisan flag. Founded by the warrior Ugwo and migrants from the Benin Kingdom who followed him, Ikpisan is positioned en route to Ode Itsekiri, sharing boundaries with Aladja. As with many riverine communities in the kingdom, Ikpisan’s economic life revolves predominantly around fishing and farming.
As with other Ghigho Aghofen, there were dance presentation from Ijala Ikenren, Ajaetan and Ifiekporo communities as they exited the Palace, this was followed by dance presentations from Ikpisan community, alongside other tribes resident in Warri Kingdom.
Chief Brown Mene, the bearer of His Majesty’s words, expressed gratitude to the Almighty for the prosperity of the kingdom under the reign of Atuwatse III. He extended heartfelt thanks to the sons and daughters of Iwere land for their unwavering love, sacrifices, devotion, and loyalty to the Olu of Warri. The presence of esteemed guests such as the SGF and the Jaja of Opobo was acknowledged with deep appreciation.
Chief Mene concluded his address by announcing the 16th of December as the next significant date when the Okere community will assume the responsibility of watching over the palace. This symbolic passing of the torch continues the tradition of Ghigho Aghofen, reinforcing the bonds of community and the rich heritage of the Warri Kingdom. The echoes of this celebration reverberate, leaving an indelible mark as the community looks forward to the next chapter in its storied history.