Written by Odigiwe Maureen, Ekweozor Ifeoma, Agina Gloria, Udogu Ogechi, Obi Chikaodili, Peter Blessing, Mgbadugha Vivian, Ebeledike Ifunanya and Okeke Ezinne
Awka (igbo:oka) is the capital of Anambra State with a estimated population of 301,657 people. The federal high way links Lagos, Benin city, Asaba, Onitsha and Enugu state. Several other road links to other important towns. The city is located midway between Onitsha and Enugu.
Awka is the oldest settlement in Igbo land. The earliest settler of Awka were the ifeana people which means “people who sprouted from the earth” it was populated by elephant with a sector of the town called ama-enyi chault of elephants”), the elephants were hunted for their husks. Where it was kept as symbol to the god Okunabe in every Awka home. Awka’s also made up of two major markets which include Eke Awka. The largest market in the town is Eke Awka, name after one of the four market days. The market is famous for causing tremendous traffic chaos with a medley of shoppers, busses, wheelbarrows all jostling for the limited amount of space available. The second largest market in Awka is Nkwo Ama-enyi located further down on the busy Zik avenue business district.
The city has a large Federal awarded university which has two primary and secondary schools in the university. It is located in Ifite Awka. The second university found there is the Paul University which was founded in 2009 by an Anglican church.
Awka developed an enlightened tolerance and kindness towards guest and strangers. It has become a center of hospitality in Anambra state adapting to the needs of hosting a wide range of visitors. It maintains a very good
environment and has also become a home away from home.
The imo-oka festival is a weeklong festival of masquerades. It starts with the Awka people visiting the community Umokpu with masquerades and ends with a visit to the Imo-oka shrines. The masquerades are believed to represent the spirit of Awka ancestors coming from the land of the dead.
Today, Awka people can be found all across the globe, many working as skilled professionals in a wide range of fields.