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History: How Relationship Between Ebira and Igala Started

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Ebira and Igala

Here is the history of Ebira and Igala Relationship, how they hustle to survive and their achievements so far.

Igala were Slave from Old Kwarafanu Then Sold to Junku King around 6th century The Jukun king settled them in Idah around that period, Abutu Eje Founded Igala Kingdom in the 7th Century.

The first ” Ata was Ebulejonu, a woman; she was succeeded by her brother Aganapoje, the father of Idoko. Idoko would later succeed him as Ata, and had two children Atiyele and Ayegba om’Idoko (Ayegba son of Idoko), Atiyele the first son of Idoko migrated eastward of the kingdom to establish Ankpa kingdom ( ÈJÈ of Ankpa) while Ayegba the second son of Idoko succeeded his father as Ata’IGala of Idah. He led a war against the Jukun , which resulted in victory.

Meanwhile Ebira is a Prince Of Junkun of the Kwararafa state north of the Benue River in present-day Taraba State. Ebira relics of trace from Junkun, Kwararafa is the Apete stool, their symbol of authority and identity as a group within the kingdoms of Kwararafa.

They brought along and kept in a place in Opete Till date. their Major occupation is (Warrior, Hunter, Iron Bender, and Farmer ). The Constant Invasion of Igala Kingdom by The then Benin Kings, The Igbo’s and other Kingdom around Make the Atta of Igala Invite a Very Brave Warrior Named Ebira (Positive Character) who came with the Group of his Men From Jukun Kingdom. That was how Ebira migrated to Idah around 1248-1272 AD.

The Ebira are Warriors, Hunter, Iron Bender, and Farmers They came to Make The rise of Igala Kingdom became a mega state. That disrupted and contributed to the shift of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade from the Bight of Benin to the Bight of Biafra.

Also that was decline period of the Benin Empire between the fivteenth centuries. The Idah-Benin war (1515-1516) was a war of mutual independence because Igala was not Alone in the Battle Field This time .

After The war, a Non fulfilments of Promised by Atta Igala to The Ebira Group led to a Land dispute between the two groups in Idah. This led to a parting of ways, and the Ebiras moved southwest.

Ebira and Igala Population

Ebira left Idah After Idah-Benin War Around 1519-1521, They had a stop by at Itobe The Remaining Ebira Group That left Idah are ITAAZI (Ebira tao) IGU (Ebira koto), PANDA (Ebira Nasarawa,) AGATU (Ebira Benue the Father of Ebira MOZUM) that chose to Settled Among Basa and Finally (UNO Ebira Ètè-Uno) who chose to Across the River Benue with ITAAZI.

UNO settled in Present day Edo State. Before Ebira Brothers Separated at Itobe River, They all had Misunderstandings Among them self on where to settled since they are all Brothers with different occupations, IGU who has great passion for fishing decided to settled at the river bank.

Ebira and Igala

While ITAAZI who Married Atta Igala Daughter was a hard working man, He considered fishing a lazy work so he moved southward into the forest Across the River with his wife and started Hunting and farming. He had his first Daughter (Ohunene at the present day Ohunene Junction in Ajaokuta, She later formed Egayin District.

All Members of the various clans in Ebira Tao are descendants of the children of ITAAZI. ITAAZI had five (5) son’s named (Adaviruku/Ohizi, Ododo, Obaji, Uga, Ochuga/Onotu). Ohizi (Adaviruku) had five children who are progenitors of the five traditional Adavi clans named after them. They occupied the present day Ajaokuta, Adavi, Okene, Okegwen, Okehi, Ehika, Ihima, Osara, Osisi Among Others.

Ebira and Igala

Most Ebira tao Clan is associated with Great Animals they Killed during Era of Hunting. During the conquest of Hausaland by the armies of The religious and Political leader Uthman Dan Fodio, 1786-1809 Ebiras came under a state of conflict with Fulani warlords to the north and west.

In the middle of the nineteenth century, two major communities, Igu (Koton Large) as it was called by Hausa, it means strong land because they fought to conquest them but never succeed and were not conquered Ebira was never Conquered by Any Kingdom.

Between 1865 and 1880, Ebira battled under the leadership of a warlord, Achigidi Okino with jihadists called Ajinomoh who were from Bida and Ilorin. However, the Ebiras were not conquered by the Fulanis helped in part by security provided by their hilly environment.

Before Ebira left Idah The Igala Kingdom influenced and has been influenced by the Ebira, Yoruba, Edo, Idoma. Igala already copy part of Ebira language while sojourning in Idah and also have Lingual mixed with Yoruba and Igbos because of inter language communication during Translactic Slave Trade. Ebira are the warrior that help Igala Kingdom when Igala was paying Homage to old Benin empire and Junkun, Ebira warriors Help Igalas Conquered Many of the northern Igbo state.

Most Northern Igbo settlements have lineages with Igala names, cultural practices with marked Igala modification and adaptations. The use of Igala circular basket in contrast to the Ibo rectangular types persists till this day. By the turn of the 18th century, After Ebira have helped The Igalas, the Igala empire was too large for any reliable and robust central control.

After The Ebira left, The religious Jihadist started contracting the Igala imperial power, conquering Igala territories in the north around 1768 -1785.

Bassa-Igala war added more pressure to Already war-weary Igala empire and The abolition of slave trade brought in untold economic recession to Igalas Land, In 1914 the British burnt down Ibagwa and Obukpa as a punitive measure.

Ebira and Igala

By the 1920s, Igala empire was a spent force and a limping shadow, the British easily took over control of both Nsụka and the Igala territories.

Igala Language is 60% Yoruba and 40% Igbo, Benin, Ebira, and Idoma. After the Abolish of Slave Trade, Atta Igala wrote Series of Latter to the British to Continue the Slave Trade, Then Haiti Already Declared an Independent State.

Ebira and Igala

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