Abiriba, colloquially known as small London, is a close-knit community in Abia State, Nigeria. Founded on matrilineal kinship, they share ancestors with Cross -Riverians and the people of Arochukwu. All in the southeastern part of Nigeria.
Uniquely, each Abiribarian belongs to an age grade. Age grades are mandated to serve the community, and at the end of each tenure, they pass the mantle to the next grade of indigenes.
The Ime-Uche ceremony symbolizes an Abiribarian’s retirement from active communal services. Most indigenes who are civil servants reconcile this traditional rite with their meritorious career retirement.
The Celebrant, Julie Lekwuwa is one of them. She had a teaching career that spanned almost four decades. So she chose to celebrate her professional and traditional retirements in style.
The Celebration is marked by the presentation of gifts by family and friends. Cars, monies, portraits, clothes, real estate, or gifts of any kind. It is to each its own. It is a time for family and friends to show affluence, in their know-how.
As a socialite and the president of the most prominent women’s group in the community (Abiriba Women’s Cultural Organization a.k.a. AWCO), it is no wonder that the people paid homage in numbers.
To every man whom God has given wealth and possessions, he has also given the ability to eat from them, to receive his reward, and to find enjoyment in his toil. These things are the gifts from God [to the celebrant, Julie Lekwuwa].Ecclesiastes 5:19.
Long live Abiriba! The Small London for giving her this unique opportunity to party in style.Congratulations to her on such a colourful occasion.