igedecarnival © I am Benue 2023

Your Benue Root, Does It Really Matter To You?

Inspirational, Stories 8/01/2023 by iambenue

I miss Benue, especially my native land of Igede, the people, my relatives, the cultural dances, the traditional music, the special delicacies, and the serene atmosphere of village life which can be compared to non-other.

robert ekpeme © I am Benue 2023

My name is Robert Ekpeme, I am Benue – a resident of Jos city of Nigeria. You might want to ask me how I feel about home as a Diasporan. It would be interesting to note that the feeling I get being born and bred outside Igede, my home town would relatively differ from the feeling one who was born and bred in Igedeland would get when away from home, though with close similarities. I was eight when my parents took my siblings and me to the village for security reasons, actually in response to the June 12 political tension of the early 90s. Fortunately, for especially the kids, our stay at home got stretched long enough to coincide with the new yam festival (Igede Agba). This was the first Igede Agba experience for me and my siblings, and we no doubt seized the moment. Of course, other shorter visits followed thereafter.

From the home experiences I’ve had and the fact that I’m based outside Benue, I can’t help but say I miss home so much that I get homesick most time.

Personally, I miss Benue, especially my native land of Igede, the people, my relatives, the cultural dances, the traditional music, the special delicacies, and the serene atmosphere of village life which can be compared to non-other.

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When you love your root and hold strong affection for it, you won’t help but think homewards irrespective of how long you’ve been away from it and where ever you might be in the world. Some Benue people by virtue of the fact that they were born in the Diaspora do not think it is necessary to visit home for any reason. The truth is that you can’t miss something you never had. How would someone who has never stayed at home, visit home or experienced village life before miss home? Anyways, this should serve as a call to change our attitude towards how we regard our roots as Benue people in the Diaspora, our thoughts towards where we originate from really matter.

 

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