Popular Nigerian businessman and socialite, Obi Cubana, his friends and sympathizers held Anambra state of Nigeria to a standstill on Friday, writing a bold statement of Nigerian’s love and support for one another, as well as a display of the Igbo culture.
In what is considered one of the country’s biggest funerals, the burial of Cubana’s mother which was held in Oba, a town in Nigeria became an online buzz due to the numbers that trooped into the state to celebrate with him, the enormous gifts among others.
Influential Nigerians and sympathizers from other countries ranging from Businessmen, entertainers including the likes of Davido, Phyno, Kanayo O kanayo, among others, flooded Anambra state with about 67 private jets, fleets of over 500 luxury cars.
The Nigerian media reported that the socialite received over 300 cows, 70 goats, 23 rams, diamond pendant worth $100,000 and millions of Naira in cash. Series of videos show friends of the socialite spraying money on him and also among the crowd.
The show of affluence and wealth attracted mixed reactions online; however, the Igbos have their own reason for celebrating the dead. According to their tradition, death is not the end of life, rather a mere transition to a different realm hence the massive celebration.
Similar to a sect of the Jola tribe in The Gambia, Guinea Bissau, and Southern Senegal, the Igbo’s rite of passage called “Ikwa Ozu” which translates as “celebrating the dead” is necessary to allow the departed soul take their rightful place among the ancestors.
The celebration of death among Igbos differs from community to community; however, the commonality is that Igbo funerals are usually ceremonious.