HISTORY of Owerri is the capital city of lmo state

History of Owerri
Owerri is the capital city of Imo State, often referred to as the town located in the heart of Igboland. Owerri is situated in the south- eastern part of Nigeria.

Owerri, which is made up of three local
governments-Owerri Municipal, Owerri North, and Owerri West. According to oral history, Ekwem Oha, a man recognized as the founding father of Owerri, is credited with establishing the city in the 14th century. Arugo was the name of his mother. His younger brother Ndum threatened to k*ll him, so he escaped from Umuori Village, Uratta in Owerri North. The conflict over who would get to keep the funeral cow that had been k*lled when their aristocratic (and representative of royalty)
father Oha passed away became a threat to his life.

According to tradition, the funeral cow had to be provided by the first son (Opara
in Igbo), Ekwem. He lacked the resources to do so. He urged his younger brother Num, also known as Ndumoha, to purchase the cow, and he

According to tradition, Num requested the cow's head, heart, and other parts that are typically given to the first son. However, his justification was that he had Num purchase the funeral cow. His plea was denied by Ekwem, and an argument

To resolve the conflict, the elders (Oha Uratta) were consulted. They achieved this by letting custom rule. Being the first son, Ekwem was entitled to the aforementioned parts of the cow.

This infuriated Ndum, who then plotted to have Ekwem k*lled in order to get his way. After word of the scheme spread, Ekwem and
his family escaped in the middle of the night to Egbu, a nearby community, bringing with them some supplies and domestic helpers.

According to history, his sister lived in Egbu. His sister
begged him to continue his trek to an uncharted and desolate place for protection and to make a permanent home there out of concern
that dum could search for him.

They set off during the night and eventually found and settled on a hilltop now known as Ugwu Ekwema. They exhaled a breath of relief and said, "Owerela lhe
Maraya," which means, "He's taken what's rightfully his." He signalled his location by sounding the drum as instructed by his sister.

The next morning, when his sister found him and his family, she was overjoyed. She then went back to Egbu.
Owere was anglicized to Owerri with the arrival of the British. However, it was still pronounced as Owere. Before Owerri was created and existed for many years or centuries, all of its nearby cities (communities) were founded. The Owerri Divisional Headquarters were first established by the British Colonial Government as Provincial Headquarters.

Meanwhile, in 1969, Owerri served as the third and
final capital of the Republic of Biafra. The breakaway state's capital was constantly being relocated as the Nigerian military took control of the previous capitals. Before Owerri, the other capitals were Enugu and Umuahia.

While several statues commemorating the war may
still be found in Owerri today, especially in areas that were heavily b*mbed, the museum in Umuahia, Abia State, has the majority of the conflict's artefacts and history. The video below shows the unique culture of the owerri people which includes heavy presence of their youth

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