Written by J Duke Anago
The popular TV presenter Ebuka popularly known as Okija married the beautiful, smart, humble and intelligent daughter of Anambra State billionaire, Chief Vincent Obianodo, CEO Rockview Hotels, Young Shall Grow Motors, Vineegas LTD and other business interests.
The wedding was adjudged as Anambra state equivalent of the royal wedding with its pomp and circumstance. Numerous dignitaries graced the occasion with Chief Alex Ekwueme, former Vice President leading the way. Flavor N’ Abania performed live. Most Lagos entertainment stars were present.
Ordinarily, I don’t write on weddings. I leave that for Ovation magazine and Bella Naija. This is because Renaissance Reporters is an opinion based news media with its unique selling proposition being people’s views, interpretations and opinion of happenings in the local and global polity. However, two reasons motivated me to do an article on this: first, the wedding held in my town, Neni. Secondly, the power of rainmakers. Non-Igbos may not understand the second reason above about rainmakers. Let me explain.
Organizing a public event in Eastern Nigeria without seeking the blessings of local Rainmakers is tantamount to buying Iceblock for an occasion the next day and leave it under the sun to melt. These rainmakers are like gods with supernatural ability to bring down rain from the heavens. Their men and women have what it takes to make rain fall precisely at your compound while your neighbors enjoy the real sunshine if they are not settled well enough in advance. Although it is becoming less fashionable for modern youths not to seek their blessings since some feel it is a fetish or succumbing to devilish power, most people (my humble self inclusive) see it as African cultural astronomy.
Against the above backdrop, most families in Igbo land go and settle these rainmaker(s) and at times it may involve paying both father and son if they are equally powerful. They usually accept cash donations ranging from N10,000 to N1,000,000 depending on one’s social status so that your occasion may be rain free. Else they will brag to you that “mmiri ga ezo” meaning rain will fall on your day.
However, rainmakers vary in power as some are said to be more powerful than others and at times there are just many of them one have to pay so they won’t scuttle the event with a heavy downpour. Paying some and not paying the other will signal you are neglecting their efficacy. Woe betides anyone that pays the weaker and ignored a more superior one with stronger rainmaking capacity. Mmiri ga ezo surely.
This was exactly the situation on the day of the wedding as it rained cats and dog on Saturday 3rd October 2015 which nearly impede the event that would showcase exceptional and colorful Igbo traditional marriage in full display. My personal investigation as a local revealed that one of the most powerful rainmakers in the neighboring town, a young teen of about 16 years of age was upset that he was neglected hence decided to bring down the rain. A 16 years old boy with such power to bring down that heavy downpour? I was dazed and equally amazed by the power the kid controls.
When I retired to my hotel room that Saturday, I was thinking of the science behind this supernatural power. These guys have some supernatural power, and when they laugh, it rains for a good purpose, when they cry, it rains that which can disturb one’s event. How can this power be transformed into something positive and not the current crude way it is applied? I have scheduled a meeting to interview this boy. Hopefully, he will agree to speak to Renaissance Reporters and allow us to publish his views.