Christmas is a day Christians over the world celebrate the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ, who came to the world for the salvation of those that believe in Him. So, many Christians travel to their towns to celebrate with their loved ones.
Among the ethnic groups that mostly travelled to their towns during Christmas is the Igbo people of southeastern Nigeria – an African ethnic group that could be found inhabiting all parts of the globe.
Often referred to as the Black Jews of Africa, most Igbo people see annual travelling during the Christmas holiday as a sine qua non to felicitate with the relatives that depended on them, improve their welfare, and foster brotherhood.
Many may be unaware of how Nigeria/Biafra Civil War affected Igbo Christmas thought. The dreadful war, which lasted between 1967 and 1970, brought Igbo people of respective social standings sandwiched together in a land of rising Sun – sharing in common cruelty of inhumanity.
When the war ended in mid-January of 1970, crippled with 20 pounds punitive exchange, and strengthened by oneness cultivated, Igbo people living within and outside Igboland have made the Christmas holiday an annual journey to their various towns to celebrate oneness.
Unfortunately, Igbo transporters have not done much to make the annual pilgrimage joyful and worthwhile. The mindless hike in transport fares are sapping the travellers majorly. Added to that is the long hours of the journey caused by boring checkpoints and unprovoked harassment, which culminated in the Asaba gridlock – a snail marathon race. A journey that could have taken five hours would turn into nine hours because of the barriers and poor traffic control. In all these, Igbo masses remain focused on the exodus to their fathers land.
Basklifenews is praying that all those that have travelled for the Christmas holiday will return hale and hearty.
Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.