Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Ayitos (Divisive Elements) Of Manyu In The USA Part:5

Part 5. Entertainments in Ekpe
Perhaps I should lecture the people of Mgbe Manyu USA on general principles concerning consultation in the Manyu culture. Most of the things we do in our culture like marriage, initiation, asking for a plot to build we used to ask Ekpe because Ekpe was the village and the village was Ekpe. Since Ekpe was the village all the land belongs to Ekpe though it is your land. Just like today; we need land titles and building permits to build on our own land.
To consult we must bring kola nuts and drinks. If the matter is dear to the consulter they add food to the kola nuts and drinks. If he is affluent he adds dry gin or whisky. Even if we already know the reason we do not ask for the reason of the consultation. The food is usually eaten first. In those days the food was shared on plantain leaves on bare floor though there are plates. Surprisingly I saw the Video on Sesekou Ebini Christmas when he went for his initiation that the people still continue this practice of eating on plantain leaves. Sesekou Ebini you are talking about Ekpe of reformation please, buy them plates to say the least. They used to eat like that because there were not enough plates so they used plantain leaves but now that the Chinese have flooded our markets with some fragile plates you and each of this Sesekou should buy breakable plates and send to your Ekpe Houses as soon as possible. If I see any Ekpe house eating on the floor again during a visit of someone from America I will write a song for you.
Back to the narration, the food is eaten first. After the satisfaction of each member since Ekpe does not plough back or save anything for tomorrow, they eat and clean the basins and pots. Then they will invite the donor to brief them on the reason for the entertainment. The reason is presented. Ekpe could give a negative or positive answer not minding of your food, drinks and kola nuts. Even with a negative answer nothing that enters into Acha Mgbe leaves the Acha Mgbe.
That is why Christmas Ebini cooked a goat to entertain Ekpe especially because his father wanted him to learn the ways of Ekpe. The neophyte was in his initiation process or the way to reawakening. Since Ekpe is neutral anyone could entertain Ekpe. That is why you see even non Ekpe members will cook, buy drinks and kola nuts to entertain Ekpe. The fact that you cook does not mean that you have been initiated or you are on your way.
Many people have given requirements for initiation into certain ranks in Ekpe but they have never been initiated if they are not qualified for such initiation. That is what makes Ekpe supreme and powerful. Nobody will dare ask for refund for their consultation expenditures in our culture.
Ekpe entertainment could also be mandatory or optional. Mandatory entertainment is usually in the form of fines like the ones I asked all the defaulters to pay. Optional entertainment can become mandatory when it is overdue.
Let us say you left from the USA and went to Mamfe or Cameroon and acquired your Sesekou title you must come back, cook and invite the people to introduce your title before you can screech Hi Ghoh; the last stage of the ululation for a Sesekou. Unfortunately, those Sesekous (they know themselves) have not offered any food and drinks not even a kola nut to Ekpe. Ekpe is eating and drinking. If you knew you did not have money to entertain Ekpe why did you enter then? Though this is optional but Ekpe is also a Club with mutual commitments we call Njangi in our jargon.
Since Eke entertainment is Njangi when you enter you have to entertain because you have been entertained by others in the group. So you are bound to entertain. Take note, if you have been entertained by one group when your turn to entertain comes you must go back to that group and entertain them. Manyu people am I spewing out history here? Is this good stuff? I am recounting your history in the present tense.
Therefore, when Christmas Ebini wanted to entertain Ekpe as his father ordered, it was wrong for Sandys to say that he cannot entertain Ekpe because he is not a member. How do you become a club member? Is it not by being sponsored by a member and that member here was his father who was giving him new converts classes.
If Sandys felt that he was challenged by a junior Ekpe member he would have ordered that the entertainment be brought to him rather than say that it could not be done because Ebini is not a member. That is not Ekpe! Even a non Ekpe member can entertain Ekpe as I have told you before. Even during their entertainment they (outsider) provided, they still do not have a voice (permission) to speak. A member must clap to take the floor before ceding it to the outsider to speak. I have been given such opportunities several times when I visit the village or places when Ekpe is going on.
It was wrong for Sesekou ArreyMbi to order Sesekou Akwo to entertain Ekpe when he himself has not done so since three years that he bought his own title. I know those who have entertain Ekpe in the DC area. These are their names:
1. Sesekou Ojong Orock (Paramount Sesekou) with seven goats
2. Sesekou Joe Mbu with six goats
3. Sesekou Akwo with five goats
4. Sesekou Solomon Egbe with three goats
5. Sesekou Ebini with two goats
6. Mfor Mgbe Joe Eyong with two goats.

Until then, he that eats from others must provide when his turn comes.

Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk

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