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Akwa Ibom State (History & Culture)

Akwa Ibom State is located in the South-South region (Niger Delta) of Nigeria and its famous capital is “Uyo,” which holds a significant meaning of “The Land of Promise.” for its natural resources of crude oil, iron, gold, clay, and limestone that is prominent to them. It was established from the origin of Calabar, Cross River State on September 23, 1987 (YAY! for 34 years and counting or as our native people would say “AKWA IBOM ISONGO!”)

Akwa Ibom people interestingly speaks five different dialects: Ibibio, Annang, Oron, Eket, and Obolo. The Ibibio language is the common language that the native people speak. The vegetation is characterized by three easily distinguishable types namely the saline water swamp forest, the freshwater swamp, and the rain forest

Akwa Ibom state is “highly” gifted in culinary culture as it is reputed for salivating a variety of standard cuisines. Because the state lies in tropical rainforest zones, vegetables, seafood, and domestic animals are resources that dominate their traditional diets. Akwa Ibom is well known for its mouthwatering, irresistible soups, and fufu (a wheat grain or flour that is boiled in hot water).

Here are some dishes to try if YOU ever visit the state: Edikang Ikong, Afang, Ekpang Nkukwo, Abak, Afere Ikon, Otong Afere Atike, Anyan Ekpang, and Pepper Soup with white rice. One special ingredient that an Akwa Ibomite cannot do without is MEAT!  A favorite traditional dish is coconut rice. The ingredients to prepare this meal are natural coconut water or milk (whichever option you prefer), goat meat, smoked fish, shrimp, prawns, pepper, salt, and crayfish. 

Our culture features folk songs, Ikon (xylophone), Uta (guard horns), Ekpo/Ekpe Masquerades, and many more.

Some of the famous dances are Ekombi (an Efik traditional dance among our sister state, Calabar, Cross River state, which shows a woman’s grace, beauty, and femininity), Asian Ubo Ikpa (means “the pride of a maiden, it shows the youthful innocence and purity in their beauty), Oko (is the male dance that is linked tow “war” because of it ferocious displays of machetes and firing themselves), Nkerebe (means “looking for a husband” and it is performed once a year by young girls who prepare for their ceremony), Asian Mbre Iban, Ndok Ufok Ebe, and Ebre!

Ref: Odyssey Online