- Holidays and Celebrations»
- African & Caribbean Holidays
This is a festival that attracts people both from within and outside Nigeria. It is a tourist attraction with beautiful sights to behold. This occasion is done to remember Vunon the mother of Nzeanzo, a demi god in Bachama land. According to Bachama myth, Nzeanzo was the last born of his mother whose prowess out-shined that of his brothers who eventually became the greatest of them all. He was also believed to have delivered his brothers from the evil plan of "Won" (Death) his uncle and defeated him.
The Festival comes of every May to signal the beginning of farming season. In the olden days, the people cannot put seed on the ground no matter how much it rained until this festival has come and gone. The time has now come for the people to go and clear their farms and should be ready for the farming season..
Youth also gather and wrestle between villages. The wrestling takes place as drums are played while spectators watch in admiration, it is always a beautiful sight to behold! Among spectators are tourists who come to quench their thirst for sight others come to buy various wares that ordinarily they cannot find in the market that easily: All this is because of the gathering, others would be seeing themselves since after the last festival.
It should be noted that civilization has brought a lot of development in Farei village as opposed to the belief that used to hold sway that no zinc house is to be erected there, now we have a lot of big and beautiful houses built on that soil. Another myth is that, no one is allowed to snap pictures or even using a tape recorder to record the proceedings. They can seize you camera and tape recorders and destroy them, but today the story has changed. Looking at this picture is a testimony to that fact. I personally went there myself, I not only took pictures, I also videotaped the event. We are hoping that our government will eventually see this as a means of generating revenue through tourism. Not only that, we expect that the government will liaise with the traditionalists in order to improve the way it is done especially the wrestling part in order to conform with the current civilization.
It is interesting to know how dear these traditionalists hold dear their tradition! Old men, old women dancing for hours as the euphoria fills the air. This was an occasion that people look up to in order to attend. Just like Christians do celebrate Christmas, so is this occasion. Some Christians too despite professing Christianity still identify with this as part of their culture, they are so attached to it so much so that they travel from far and near to attend this event.
The Wrestling Bout
The wrestling bout is usually preceded by presentation of various gifts ranging from generating sets, televisions, motorcycles and monetary gifts etc. This is to encourage the youth and to also empower them more so as not to partake in the evils of the society. The wrestling too is a thing of pride to the youth especially to those that participate in it. It symbolizes strength, courage and manhood. Young women would be there too to cheer their preferred candidates.
During this moment, various parties are being organised by various groups to keep themselves busy especially at night. Big corporations as part of their social responsibility do organize games to the participating youth with mouth watering gifts. In short, it is a place to be: You need to see it yourself than when told.