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Osu Caste System In Igboland Ends Today

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All is now set to abolish the age- long practice of the Osu caste system in Igbo land.

The epoch- making event will take place today in Nri, the acclaimed ancestral home of the Igbo nation, in Anaocha local government area of Anambra State.

According to the Personal Assistant to the Nri Regeant, Prince Ifeanyi Onyeso, the pronouncement which will abolish the practice of Osu caste system will be made in Ikpo Eze Nri ( a place where Nri Royal treasures are kept), and, the ceremony will be witnessed by top traditional rulers from across Igbo land, and, other traditional title-holders, community leaders and other  prominent Igbo leaders.

Osu caste system is a practice in Igbo society where some people are tagged second-class citizens as against the freeborn, and, therefore, are denied certain privileges enjoyed by those who are freeborn. In this sense, a second class citizen is not allowed to marry a freeborn, and, are not qualified to take certain traditional titles which are exclusive reserve for the freeborn.

Prince Onyeso who denied that the practice of Osu caste originated from Nri described the practice as inhuman and primitive, and, therefore should be abolished.

He stated that a punishment will also be pronounced from the Nri throne today against “whoever that might call any body Osu, or practice Osu caste system, be it a community, traditional ruler, individual or group. When a punishment is visited on such person, it is only Nri man that can come and carry out a cleansing before the curse that befalls such person can go,” Prince Onyeso stated.

Meanwhile, the traditional ruler of Nawfia, Njikoka local government area of Anambra State, Igwe Chijioke Nwankwo ( Osuofia 11) told LEADERSHIP that it was wrong for any person to be tagged a second class citizen, adding that such practices should not be encouraged.

He confirmed that he was aware of the efforts by the Nri royal family to mobilise traditional rulers in the state to attend today’s event, stating, “In Umunri clan there is nothing like Osu, we don’t recognise it, and, the practice should not be encouraged”.


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