The Ugoani of Okpanam kingdom in Oshimili North Local Government Council of Delta State, His Royal Majesty, Michael Mbanefo Ogbolu, has said that nothing will make his subjects to abandon their rich cultural heritage.
Speaking in his palace on Wednesday when he celebrated his Iwa-ji festival, the traditional ruler stated that the annual event has come to stay, adding that the scope of the celebration will continue to be expanded in the future.
He congratulated the people of his kingdom for a very successful harvest noting that with the celebration, the season of hunger is over.
The Ugoani of Okpanam charged his subjects to continue to live in peace and be good hosts to people from other parts of the country who reside in the kingdom.
Also speaking during the ceremony, the Delta State Commissioner for Information, Mr. Patrick Ukah, stated that once nothing fetish is involved, the culture of the people will continue to be celebrated.
Mr. Ukah, who is from Okpanan, advised Nigerians to always distinguish between tradition and culture, stressing that culture is what makes a set of people different from another.
The ceremony, which was witnessed by indigenes and non-indigenes resident in Okpanam, featured traditional dances by different groups and paying of homage to the traditional ruler.
The Obi of Akwukwu Igbo, His Royal Majesty, Obi Azuka 11, chiefs from other kingdoms and representatives of various communities were in attendance.