The Igala Kingdom And Its Attah's Idoma Ancestry
(c) Dede Chibu, Igala sons & daughters IGALA NATION Indigenous Nupe People Worldwide
The Igala Kingdom is not as old as old as some claim. According to original Igala narratives and the study of archeologists, the Igala kingdom wasn’t established until the mid-1500s, the around 1550s when their first Attah, Ebule Jonu (a woman) formed the kingdom with its capital at Idah.
Ebule Jonu was the daughter of Abutu Eje, who migrated to Amagede in Igalaland from the Doma Kingdom of Nassarawa. Back then, the area the Doma, Keana, and Wukari areas was termed as Kororofa by the Hausa. Abutu Eje migrated with his followers to Amagede around the early 1530s.
Doma is an Arago kingdom. The Arago are a subgroup of the Idoma people. However, a section of Doma migrated from Bida, which was in the Beni Confederacy, assimilated to an extent and produced the ruling dynasty of Doma. It is from this section of assimilated Nupes in the Doma kingdom that Abutu Eje was from. So the current Attah of Igala is an Idoma man with Nupe heritage.
The Igala capital, Idah, is an Arago-Nupe word meaning Cliff/Canyon/Revine, which describes the topography of Idah. The “Jukun” migration claim is false. This belief stems from an assumption by some European authors that Kororofa was a Jukun confederacy when in reality it was just an area of people which the Hausa identified as Kororofa/Kwararafa which means ‘Man who lives by the Kwara river’.
In fact, the Ebira kingdom of Opanda precedes the Igala Kingdom. It is also pertinent to note that just as the Jukun ancestry claim is false and there is no sign of Jukun influence in Igala, there is likewise no Igala influence - whether culturally or linguistically - in the areas misrepresented as once paying tribute to the Attah of Igala. And to add, Attah of Igala/Igara was not his original name. It was Attah of Idah.
Before the coming of the migrant group out of Doma the place now known as Igalaland was a land which consisted of a hybrid group of Yorubas, Idomas (Idoma proper/Akpoto), and Igbos. This hybrid group is your Igala of today. This too was admitted in 2017 by Attah Ameh Oboni in an interview with punch; although today he says Igalas are from Egypt.
It’s important to note that their is no word in the Igala language, apart from those borrowed from the Hausa during the Nigerian regional days or borrowed from neighbor Ebira, Nupe, or Okpoto (not Akpoto), that isn’t either an exact word or cognate of a word from the Idoma, Yoruba, or Igbo language. The Idoma, Yoruba, and Igbo are the groups who formed the Igala linguistic group.
Edited-Posted By Anthony Aroh of The OLAUDAH EQUIANO HERITAGE FOUNDATION, NIGERIA. Telephone: +234-8035653505 +234-8093149929 Email: [email protected]