9/09/2017

They Were Called Ikuku or Wind -The Ekumeku Warriors


The strength and wonders of the Igbo society had terrified the colonial masters, for they had never imagined such tireless strength and resilience of a people whose communities sat around the Niger River. 
The fearful shock of the colonial masters had emanated from the fact that prior to invading the Igbo land, they had been given easy and free access into territories of other tribes in Nigeria they had taken over.
The community men fought with might and charm. They had invoked at most times, the help of the spirits which enabled them to disappear and re-appear.
This amazed and frightened the colonial invaders and they in their usual manner, gave the local warriors the name "IKUKU/ WIND." 
Unlike in other parts of Nigeria, the engine of British colonization faced especially, stiff resistance in the lower Niger. Since the mid 19th century, the Royal Niger Company, a nationalized British trading corporation, had been creeping slowly along the banks of the Niger, leaving in its wake a trail of deceit, humiliation, intimidation, and glaringly one-sided treaties. In 1870, after much conflict, Ndoni, a powerful Igbo-speaking trading kingdom and naval power whose formidable fleet of war canoes virtually controlled trade in the lower Niger, was conquered by the Royal Niger Company, forever tilting the balance of power in the region. By the 1880s, the British and their Christian missionaries had established a regional stronghold at Asaba.
In the 1890s, radical local leaders, who had formerly held power in native politics, but had become disenfranchised in the new British-organized colonial structure secretly convened throughout the Anioma region (western Igboland) and shared their collective fears regarding the loss of their independence and the growing influence of European intruders. They organized a secret militia comprised of ordinary young men from all segments of society united in their hatred of Westerners, Christianity and European influences and laid the foundations for what would become an over twenty year struggle known as the Ekumeku Movement.
The Ekumeku, or Silent Ones, united the western Igbo and allowed them to overcome the disadvantages of their fragmented political systems and operate with a single military muscle. Unlike a conventional war, the movement was mainly underground and was spearheaded by secret-society members who were experienced in law administration, war, and policing. Employing guerilla tactics, under the cover of darkness they attacked colonial officials and their local sympathizers, burned and destroyed colonial buildings and posts owned by the Royal Niger Company, and disappeared back into their forest hideouts by daybreak. The manner of impunity and ferociousness with which the Ekumeku operated struck fear in the minds of locals and Europeans alike, earning them the nickname Ikuku  or Whirlwind.
In 1898, the Ekumeku attacked Igbuzo (Ibusa), a town under British occupation, and forced the Royal Niger Company and its employees to flee back to their headquarters at Asaba. In various raids conducted around Asaba, which was not directly attacked because of its fortifications, countless numbers of missionaries, Europeans, and their African supporters were slain, and the movement grew in popularity as increasing numbers of young men swelled into its ranks. It was particularly difficult for the British to combat the Ekumeku mainly because of its faceless and discrete nature; since it had neither public representatives nor a physical headquarters, no no one could be arrested, blamed, or held responsible.
In 1902, stirred into action by rumors of a fresh Ekumeku offensive, the British launched a preemptive strike and arrested dozens of local leaders, chiefs, and elders, who were suspected Ekumeku agents and razed numerous communities to the ground. In that same year, the Ekumeku were defeated at Ubulu Uku and over three hundred men were captured and sent to prisons in Calabar, where many committed suicide or died of disease. Of this number only five were said to have survived. By 1909, the Ekumeku had reorganized at Ogwashi Uku and liberated the town from British occupation. After months of siege, the town once again fell and the Ekumeku were once again dispelled. In the following decade, countless arrests, trials, and hangings eventually signalled the end of anti-colonial resistance in this region.

2 comments:

  1. Do You Need A Powerful Africa Native Doctor? I Mean A Spiritual Herbalist
    With Great Spirit Connected To Ancestors. Call+2348071470242 Dr Otubor
    James Is A High Voodoo Priest Master. He is a Spell Caster, Native
    Doctor, Spiritual Herbalist, Powerful Sickle cell Healer, Spiritual
    Astrologer, Psychic Reader, Multi Guru, Witch Doctor, Priest Of Africa
    Money Ritual.

    Have You Been To Native Doctor to Native Doctor Without Any Solution To
    Your Problems Or Rather Add To it? Have You Been To Place To Place In View
    Of A Powerful Native Doctor That Can Solve All Your Predicament, You Must
    Understand That There Is A Native Doctor That Supersede All Native Doctor
    Among All Native Doctor, If You Are In Search Of A Powerful Native Doctor
    With Great Spiritual Powers, Then You Must Be In Search Of A Native Doctor
    That Derives Power From The Marine World. That Is The Spirituality Of The
    Greatest Africa Native Doctor Otubor
    Dr James Is Recognized All Over The World Of Marine Kingdom, As One
    Of The Top Fortunate And Most Powerful Native Doctor Of Charms Casts From
    The Beginning Of His Ancestors ship Until Now Dr o lives Strong
    Among All Other Native Doctors, There Have Never Been Any Form Of
    Impossibility Beyond The Control Of Dr Otubor . It Doesn't Matter The
    Distance Of The Person With The Problems Or Situation, All You Have To Do
    Is Believe

    In The Native Otubor charms Casts That Works, He Always
    Warns Never To Get His Charms Casts If You Do Not Believe Or Unable To
    Follow His Instruction.
    It Is The Assignment Of The Native Doctor Otubor To Offer
    Services To Those In Need Of Spiritual Assistance Not Minding The Gravity
    Of Your Situations Or Distance As Long As Water, Sea, Ocean, Lake, River,
    Sand etc. Are Near You, Then Your Problems Of Life Would Be Controlled
    Under Your Foot.

    If You Need Any Spiritual Help On Any of These:
    Get Your Lover Back
    Fruit Of The Womb
    Fibroid
    Business Boom
    Financial Breakthrough
    Get Rich Without Ritual +2348071470242
    Do As I Say
    Bad Dream
    Promise And Fail
    Epilepsy
    Spiritual Attack
    Land/Court Case
    Mental Disorder
    Political Appointment
    Visa Approval
    Cancer
    Examination Success
    Spend And Get Back
    Good Luck
    Natural Health
    Hypertension
    Diabesity (Diabetic+Obesity)
    Stroke
    Sickle Cell
    Impotency
    Win Court Case
    Promotion At Work
    Commanding Tone
    Protection Ring
    Marriage Success
    Love Ring
    Favour Ring
    Recover Lost Glory
    Spiritual Power For Men Of God
    Travel Success Ring
    Job Success
    Lotto/Pool Win And Many More.

    Make Haste To Call Dr Otubor On +2348071470242. Or Mail Him to
    babaotuborpower@gmail.com For Spiritual Problem Today And
    You Will Surely
    Get Solution To All Your Predicament.

    ReplyDelete