Otu Odu Society
Most prominent among
women's social organizations in Onitsha is the Otu Odu Society. It is
an ancient institution which provides a pedestal on which dignity of
womanhood is elevated.
A member at all
times wears large ivory bangles on her hands and legs as a distinctive
mark of nobility, although in modern time some members wear the bangles
only on special occasions.
During the initiation
ceremony known as "Ikwo aka Odu', an initiation name or title is
conferred on the candidate , and from then onward, she is expressly
addressed by the title name before her surname. Apart from special initition
title, a member of the society is generally addressed "Iyom".
However, the Otu
Odu Society is not identical with men's Agbalenze Society, for while
the former is purely social, the latter is essentially religious as
it carries the dignity of priesthood. Nevertheless, the two organizations
are highly revered by the body-politic.
Members of the Otu
Odu Society are pre-eminent in women's society generally and more often
than not, it is from among the rank that female chiefs are appointed
to the Omu's cabinet.
During the second
burial ceremonies of a deceased member, a cow and a number of goats
are slaughtered among other things, as in the case of a deceased Ozo
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