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It was the real handshake across the Niger—royal fathers from Igbo land and their counterparts from Yoruba land charging Nigerians on national unity as a path to peaceful coexistence among ethnic nationalities regardless of religious backgrounds. At the historical Eri Festival in Aguleri, Anambra State, and in separate speeches, HRM Eze Chukwuemeka Eri, Eze Eri Kingdom in Enugwu Aguleri and HRM, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ooni of Ife, royal fathers from ancient stools of authority, showed the way forward and identified national unity as the key that will accelerate the pace of peace, development and progress of the country in all areas.
It is certainly auspicious that such occasion was witnessed at the World Eri Festival, held at Enugwu Aguleri in Anambra State, where Eze Eri hosted the Ooni of Ife, Obi of Onitsha, HRM Igwe Nnaemeka Achebe, President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, and other dignitaries. Other dignitaries at the occasion were Igwe of Mbaukwu HRM Igwe Peter Anugwu, HRM, an industrialist Igwe Patrick Okolo of Nsukka Urban, Dr Chile Obidigbo, Chairman of Anambra East Local Government Area Hon Obi Nweke, The chairman of Ogbaru LGA Hon Arinze Awogu, Member Representing Anambra East in the Anambra State House of Assembly Hon Obinna Emenaka among others.
The chief celebrator, Eze Chukwuemeka Eri, the Ezeora 34th and Aka Ji Ovo Igbo, described the Festival as a time when the Igbo world-wide gathered to remember their progenitor Eri, who is believed to have migrated from Israel and settled at Aguleri.“Today, we commemorate and celebrate an African and global historical figure Nna Anyi (our father) Eri. Today I welcome my brother and friend from our brotherly land of Yoruba, the Ooni of Ife, HRM Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja 11, the 51st Ooni of Ife. I use this opportunity to call for peace and unity among the Yoruba and the Igbo and the rest of Nigerians,” he said.