OFO in Igboland - Origin, Types, Significance, All You Need To Know

Ofo is an age-old symbol, the staff of God, which was in place even before the time of Moses among Ndi Igbo (the Igbo Nations) as stated by Igbo History. It is a symbol of truth and justness (Equity)

 

Ofo is the central symbol of Igbo spirituality. It is a sacred staff of authority, and an emblem symbolizing the links between Chukwu Okike (the Creator of all) and man, the dead and the living, the living and the unborn.

Ofo symbolizes justice, righteousness, and truth. It plays many important roles in the social, political, and spiritual life of the Igbo. No serious rite of ceremony can be performed without Ofo.

Ndi Igbo are extremely ethical. Morality comes to them so naturally that it is a part of their daily living. Ethics is such a part of their life that the Igbo vernacular has no word for it. Morality is not enforced (by the law enforcement group), yet, everyone is considerably moral because every action is either rewarded or punishable by the ancestors. Every unethical behavior has pancosmic effect on one’s children and on one’s children’s children. A book on Igbo metaphysics by Fr. Mph Edeh stated that morality is such an integral part of Igbo cosmology that the Igbo word for man is “Mma du” which means, “Let goodness be.”

TYPES OF OFO

1.     OFO UKWU\OFO OBODO: is an ofo made only one not two in the same area. It will be in control by the holder till his death. It permits only the son of the soil to be in control.

2.     OFO UMUNNA: is made for the head of the Umunna. It permits only the head to be in control of the ofo, he will be a son of the soil not from the lineage of slave or outcast either by parents or ancestor.

3.     OFO OBI: is made for the head of obi. It will be incontrol of the head of obi. He will be the son of the obi.

4.     OFO NNA: is for the father of the family. It may have symbol or not depending the choice of the family. It permits everybody to hold it.

5.     OFO NKE ONYE / OFO NKE ONWE: This Ofo is made for everybody both male and female, adult and children, slave and outcast. It does not have any symbol. It is spiritual that was why the Igbos says “Uka di na Obi” (Worshipping God is in your heart.

6.     Ofo Chi:

 

     NAMES WHICH EXPLAIN THE DUTIES OF OFO

1.     Ejim ofo                                    I am with Ofo

2.     Oji Ofo ga-ana                           He with Ofo will go free

3.     Ofoma                                      Ofo Knows

4.     Ofomaonyejie                            Ofo Knows with it

5.     Ofomata                                    Let ofo Know

6.     Ofojekwu                                  Ofo will talk

7.     Ofokwuoeziokwu                       Let Ofo talk the truth

8.     Ofodumana                               Ofo is leading me home

9.     Ofozobam                                 Let Ofo protect me

10.   Ofobuike                                   Ofo is the strength

11.   Ofodile                                      Ofo is the active

12.   Ojobueze                                  Ofo is the king

13.   Ofobundu                                  Ofo is the life

14.   Ofokansi                                   Ofo is powerful than poison

15.   Ofoezie                                     Ofo has shown me the way

 He who uses the Ofo for unjust purposes faces the repercussion as the Chi (god) behind the Ofo retaliates or avenges its cause.

Dalu Nwafor Igbo!

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