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Cultural Heritage: National Monuments And Sites …The Etsu Nupe’s Palace

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Nigeria has two UNESCO world heritage sites, namely; Sukur Cultural Landscape in Madagali in Adamawa State and Osun-Oshogbo Sacred Grove in Osun State. There are 65 national monuments and sites managed by the National Commission for Museums and Monuments. Palaces, the residence of traditional rulers are among the fewest documented, yet, they constitute the most visible artefacts that are socially, culturally and politically significant and worthy of historic documentation. A good example is the Etsu Nupe’s palace.
The Etsu Nupe is the traditional title for the most superior Emir of Nupe land. The Etsu Nupe is a first class chief. Nupes are found predominantly in Niger State, which lies in the North Central geo- political zone, signifying the extent of the Emir’s influence. They are also found in Kogi State.
The Etsu Nupe’s palace is located in Bida West in Niger State, along Wuya-Bida Road next to Bida Local Government Secretariat. The Etsu Nupe’s Palace is referred to in local dialect of Hausa as Hakorin Giwa, and Yikan Dagba in the original Nupe language, interpreted in English as elephant’s tusk. It serves administrative, cultural and social purposes. The Etsu Nupe’s palace (Ekan Dagba was constructed in about 1935 by Sarkin Gini Muhammad Egba. Perhaps, Etsu Nupe’s palace, among other traditional palaces holds a rich cultural heritage in the North Central region of Nigeria.
These are the past events that brought about the present and future of the Nupe Emirate which are called ‘Etsu Nupe’.
The ruling family of the Nupes are all sons of Mallam Dendo , out of seven sons, the ruling families are  three in number , namely; Usman Zaki, Mama Saba and Umaru Majigi also known as Ena-Gpyazhi (Dauda 2013). The genealogy began in 1856. Since then, 13 Emirs have reigned successfully, except Etsu Nupe Usaman Sarki who was sent on exile. The reign of each Etsu commences by appointment and is terminated by death. The longest serving Etsu was Etsu Nupe Umaru Sanda Ndayako who reigned for 28 years. The shortest was Etsu Nupe Usman Zaki who reigned for three years. The current Etsu Nupe, Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar has been on the throne for 15 years now.
The Hakorin Giwa, a symbol of the Nupe Emirate’s administrative dynasty is significant for its socio-cultural and political activities where major decisions are taken by the Emir and his councils. It serves as Nko, a venue for the royals and title holders converging every Friday to discuss central issues to the Emirate.
The palace occupies about 500 metres. The main entrance has a height of 5ft with the thickness of the wall of 2ft 33″ and the Arch entrance at 4ft 57’. The main entrance has a wooden door panel called “Kpako Cigban”, This is the door to the walk way for the Etsu known as “Dyadya”, and it leads to Etsu Katamba called the sitting room/reception for attending to visitors and his subjects.
Hakorin Giwa like other traditional buildings in the North are glossed by Makuba and Dan Gangaje to smoothen the wall to show the architectural and artistic mastery. The Makuba is also used as an insect repellent. This cultural heritage is a single round palace comprising four rooms and one cell “Katagi” for offenders, two entrances, with one door from the front view. The back view has three Archs with an exit door.
It serves as conference/meeting “Nko”, venue for the royals/title holders on Fridays to discuss the way forward for the Emirate. Among the socio-cultural activities of Hakorin Giwa is the royal marriage of princesses. Both maternal and paternal princess marriage rites are conducted in the Katamba. The union known as Yawo- Gitsu takes place at Shaba Palace. The couple are brought to the Hakorin Giwa at evenings as a mark of royalty heralded by sounds of flutes called Khakati. Other weddings of course take place in the palace but sometimes without royal blessings. Funeral rites known as “Ekunso” and Suna, naming ceremonies all take place in the Hakorin Giwa in the Nupe Emirate.
Customarily, women enter the palace only at dawn before morning prayers to tend to immediate issues. Though, the Emirate holds and recognises the contributions of women to the society in high esteem. The Sagi Nupe and Niwoye are high ranking women who hold titles in the emirate and are restricted to the royal family alone. Soniyan Nupe is one in charge of the market women, the Etsu’s maids and midwife to his wives. The women in their respective designations foster unity and coordinate the affairs of women in the land. These are the women allowed in the Hakorin Giwa. Remarkably, the Nupe nation is known for its historical antecedents of the Nupe reign and has held the Hakorin Giwa, as a significant cultural heritage of the people.
Every nation that has a future has a history and that can be said of the Nupe dynasty. The Nupes hold in high esteem the “Hakorin  Giwa” , which is of great importance for administrative, cultural and social purposes for the ruling class.
Abosede resides in Abuja.

 

Olaniyan Oluwabukola Abosede

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Inflation: Govs Meet Buhari Over Economic Woes, Insecurity, Today

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Worried by the economic woes in the country, the 36 governors would, today, meet at the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa in Abuja, to discuss the way forward.
In a statement, yesterday, the Director, Media and Public Affairs of Nigeria Governors’ Forum Secretariat, Abdulrazaque Bello-Barkindo, declared that the state of the nation’s economy would dominate conversations during the meeting.
According to the statement, “several governors reasoned that it is high time to tell each other the bare truth by confronting each other on the situation and brainstorming on it.”
The statement noted that: “This formed the basis for resorting to an in-person meeting which since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has been relegated by the states’ executives.
“Two things will feature prominently in the conversation: the economy and security. This will be the first time in the year, contrary to media reports that governors had collectively advised the president on the weeding of fifty-year-olds from the federal civil service and other spurious suggestions meant to impose further hardship on the people, that governors will collectively meet to consider a total overhaul of the nation’s economy.
“The meeting which, according to the invitation issued by the Director-General of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, Mr Asishana Bayo Okauru, will commence at 2pm. It begins with the launch of the Primary Health Care Leadership Challenge Fund, followed by the launch of the World Bank SFTAS charter before the real conversation on the state of the economy begins.
“There will also be such regular updates as the CARES programme and the chairman’s remarks. All governors are warmly welcome.”

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2023: Momodu Urges Atiku To Sign Peace Pact With Rivers Gov …Says Fear Of Wike, Beginning Of Wisdom In PDP

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A former presidential aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Dele Momodu, has suggested a solution to the rift between the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, and Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike.
Momodu suggested that a close-door dialogue between Atiku and Wike would resolve the rift between the two politicians.
There has been a rift between the pair after the PDP presidential primaries in Abuja.
Weighing in on the face-off, the veteran journalist said both politicians should possibly sign a pact and agree on deliverables.
Momodu said the fallout of the PDP post-national convention crisis has shown that Wike was a force to reckon with in the party ahead of the 2023 presidential election.
According to Momodu: “What I would advise Atiku Abubakar to do today is to sit down one-on-one without no other person present with Governor Wike and agree on deliverables, if possible, sign an agreement.
“The situation in PDP shows what Wike is in the equation of things in Nigeria. If you have a man who is your best governor across the board, across party lines, Wike stands out as a fantastic performer.
“Today, the fear of Wike is the beginning of wisdom in PDP, there is no question about that. Wike is smart, he knows the game he’s playing, and what he wants to do is to force a deal with the party. That’s my own reading of the situation.”

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Wike Labels Disgruntled Elders As Traitors …Says He’s A Fulfilled Leader …He Was Best Performing LG Chairman In Rivers -Odili

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Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has accused some elders of ganging up against him because they did not scale through the primary to be the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state.
The governor explained that some of them, on his 2021 birthday, who indicated interest to fly the ticket, but failed at their bid to clenching it are now in Abuja plotting against him.
Wike spoke, last Monday, during the 74th birthday reception organised to honour the former Governor of Rivers State, Dr. Peter Odili, at the private residence built and donated to him by the state government in Old Government Residential Area, Port Harcourt.
The governor said those elders came to him in their own accord and showed a commitment that they would stay to see through what they came to convince him about.
“On my last birthday, 12midnight, some of our elders called me that they want to see me. They came to me and said they came to wish me happy birthday.
“Then, they presented me a letter that I should run for president. All of them including Dr. Abiye (Sekibo) signed the document.
“I say okay, you people too should go and give me someone who will be governor after me. They all sat there, looking left and right.
“I asked them, those of you who are interested to be governor should raise your hands. Everybody raised his hand. One person didn’t raise his hand, Senator Bari Mpigi. I asked why he was not interested, he replied, sir, let me hold what God has given me. I don’t want to lose the two.”
Wike noted that the elders also signed to a document that they would abide by whatever becomes the outcome of the governorship primary.
But governor expressed the regrets that since they were not successful, they have turned around now to allege that he was pursuing a third term bid.
“Some persons don’t know the history. They go and tell all kinds of story. But the truth is this; all of them (elders) signed the document prepared by O.C.J. Okocha that whoever I will bring, they will abide by it.
“But now, they went to Abuja that I must not be vice president. I also read, yesterday, when I was in Paris, one of them saying that I told him that if they do to me what they did to Dr. Peter Odili; that I will collapse the system.
“I am not an ungrateful person; and I will never be ungrateful in my life. What’s important is that I have done well as a governor. I am happy and I am leaving office a happy man.”
The Rivers State governor recalled that when Dr. Peter Odili was to run for the office of the president, he had a large crowd following, happily.
He noted that when the issue of governorship of Rivers State was to be decided and he did not give those who wanted it, they all left him, ran to Abuja to thwart his presidential ambition.
Wike, however, said he has been holding on to the advise of the former governor, hence he was not surprised at the turn of events and the outcome of the PDP presidential primary.
He described Dr. Peter Odili a true leader of men, who groomed many, and supported a lot of persons to political lamplight, particularly in Rivers State and across the country.
“There was a time every political class abandoned Odili. This is a man who gave us everything. Some people called him ‘Mr. Donatus’. There was no abuse he did not get. Everybody he tried to help their families, at the end of the day, all betrayed him.
“For us, we have used him as a school, and we thank him for making himself available for us to use him to learn so that we won’t be shocked of whatever that is going to happen.”
Wike expressed delight at the opportunity to have known Odili and being able to celebrate him.
He pointed to the several support and the gains from the political tutelage under Odili that had made him accomplish his political successes.
He reiterated that Odili’s benevolence made it possible for Ikwerre sons to emerge governors of Rivers State.
In his response, the former Governor of the state, Dr. Peter Odili said, himself and his wife, Hon. Justice Mary Odili (rtd) were overwhelmed by the birthday gift, courtesy of the state government.
Odili explained that during his tenure as governor, Wike was the best performing council chairman in the state.
He lauded Wike for investing in human capacity development, infrastructure and building the best law school campus in Port Harcourt.
In his goodwill message, Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, harped on the need for all Nigerians to work together to enthrone fairness, justice and equity in all facet of society, which Odili has always stood for.
Also speaking, Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, noted that Odili was a great leader who had impacted on many lives across the country.
Similarly, former Cross River State Governor, Donald Duke, commended Odili for being a role model and comporting himself very well after leaving office.
In his homely at the thanksgiving mass, Monsignor Pius Kii, said Nigeria missed the opportunity of having Dr. Peter Odili as their president because he would have used his farsighted ability, courage and adaptive capacities to solve Nigeria’s many problems.
Similarly, the Rivers State Deputy Governor, Dr. Ipalibo Harry Banigo, felicitated with Dr. Peter Odili, as he celebrated his 74th Birthday, last Monday.
In her goodwill message in Government House, Port Harcourt, Banigo said as the father of the modern Rivers State, Odili has continued to be a great leadership icon, whose leadership style impacted positively on the lives of Rivers people and beyond during his tenure as the governor of Rivers State.
Banigo, who expressed gratitude to Odili for his support to the Wike-led administration, described him as a philanthropist per excellence, a great patriot and astute statesman.
The deputy governor while wising him many happy returns, prayed the Almighty God to continue to bless and keep Odili in good health.

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