20 injured at initiation into manhood in Anambra State

20 injured at initiation into manhood in Anambra State

About 20 people reportedly sustained serious injury during the initiation of 150 youths into manhood, as part of the Ogidi, Idemili North Local Government area of Anambra State annual Nwafor Festival.
This was in spite of the fact that the community put up monitoring team all through the one week festival period to ensure peace.
Mr. Peter Agbogu, from the community said Nwafor festival was a period of interaction amongst relations, friends and well-wishers and attributed injuries sustained by some people as resulting from youthful exuberance.
He said the monitoring team included the police, DSS and elders to checkmate the activities of the youths during the festival.
Pat Agbata, also from the community, expressed satisfaction with the Nwafor Festival and said the injured ones must have been drunk and acted under the influence of alcohol.
“Prior to the festival, the President-General, Chief Chuka Onubogu ensured that there would be no casualty as he put security in place. The Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in charge of Ogidi Police Division, Mr. Hassan Musa and the Commander of Cultism Squad, Mr. Baco Gado and elders led by their chairman, did all they could to ensure no life was lost,” Agbata said.
Samuel Amobi Sidney Pote, from the community, said the festival is not associated with death.
“Any death during the festival is like every other death that can be accidental and at anytime, but not associated with Nwafor Festival as some people believe it to be spiritual. It is a festival for resting after cultivation and people of Ogidi should allow peace to reign by doing the will of God,” Pote said.

A youth leader and proprietor of Global Resources Nigeria Limited, Chief Akunwata Cletus Onwuzurike, said Nwafor Festival “is the only festival that binds us together as a people and should not be a violent period but merriment and resting time after cultivation.
“We must go back to our culture and avoid acts capable of tarnishing our image and untimely death,” Onwuzurike said.
The Chief Priest of Iwelle Ogidi, Chief Felix Obika expressed satisfaction with the festival and urged the youths not to overdo things in order  to avoid untimely death.

The Chairman of Traditional Medicine Practitioners Association in the state, Obumneme Agwuebue Okoye said the period was for resting after cultivation and to thank God for his mercy.
The Ogidi DPO said proactive measure was put in place which helped to forestall criminal activities during the festival.

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