4 Proofs That The Igbo People Are The Aborigines Of Ile Ife

We have heard many historians and scholars speak of Queen Moremi a beautiful Yoruba woman from Offa, and how she used her beauty to win the heart of Obatala Oreluere, the King of the aborigines of Ile Ife who was forced into exile when The Great Oduduwa led the Yorubas to dislodge the Ife Aborigines of Ife and create the present civilization of Ile Ife.

But the interesting thing these days is the great efforts being made by some to hide the Igbo identity of the aborigines of Ile Ife. When you point out to them that the aborigines were Igbo they tell you, they are ‘not the same Igbo with the present day Igbo’. One is forced to smile and ask how they know they are not the same Igbo.

Apart from the fact that the Igbo aborigines share the same name with the people called Igbo today, here are a few pointers that the Igbos of today and the aborigines of Ile Ife (today’s Oluyare, Igare, Anioma and Olukwumi people) are one and the same people.

  1. Obatala’s title of Oba Igbo: One of the titles of the aboriginal King of the Igbo in Ile Ife (Obatala) was Oba Igbo, which means King of the Igbos. Many don’t know that Oba is an Igbo word for king. For instance, the title of the traditional ruler of Ogba in Rivers State (not the Ogba in Lagos o) is Oba.

Interestingly, in a visit to Cuba, Professor Catherine Acholonu discovered a statue of Obatala erected by the Lucumi (Olukwumi) people that had the inscription, ‘Obatala, King of the Igbo Nation’.  The Lucumi people know. What nation are they talking about? Not the Igbo kingdom of Nri- from where the Obatala’s originally came from.

They were talking about the aboriginal kingdom of Ile Ife, which was Igbo, were the Obatala’s went to for an Ilu (journey) after a problem with the king of Nri, an Igbo priest-king who was their relative.

  1. Obatala’s title of Obi Osere Igbo: Another title of the King of the aborigines of Ile Ife was Obi Osere Igbo. Note the three words that make up the title: Obi (another Igbo title for king); Osere, a traditional title for the traditional priests in Oguta in today’s Igbo state of Imo; and Igbo (the name of an ethnic group).

From this, we can deduce that the Olukwumi (the subclan of the Igbo aborigines of Ile Ife) called the Obatalas Priest-King of the Igbos. So the title Obi Osere Igbo simply means Priest-King of the Igbos.

Today many kingdoms in Igbo land still use the title Obi. For instance, the Obi of Onicha Ugbo. Yes you read right, Onicha Ugbo. Orisha Ugbo- Onistha Ugbo. Are you thinking what we are thinking?

  1. Ugbo Towns In Igbo Land: If you look at Igbo Land, you will see several kingdoms that have the name Ugbo. For instance, Onicha Ugbo. Let’s take another example the town of Ugbo-Obi, whose name means Ugbo of the King. Or should we take another? Ani Ugbo, which means Land of Ugbo, or Land of the Ugbo People.

In today’s Yoruba land, you also have a kingdom called Ugbo. Now the question is: is this town an ancient kingdom that existed even in the period of the great exploits of Oduduwa, Obatala, Moremi, and Eze Chima (first king of Onitsha and a Prince of Ife and Benin)?

In other words, did it exist during the time of the aborigines of Ile Ife, or is the town a more recent creation?

I would prefer to think that the town is an ancient civilization that existed in that great era when one great empire fell and another great empire took its place. If that be the case, then it is the same people that named that town Ugbo, that also named the three Igbo towns of Ugbo that I have mentioned, namely Onicha Ugbo, Ugbo-Obi and Ani-Ugbo.

4. Ugbokko Araba And Idi Araba ‘Coincidence’: Do you know that deep in the Igbo part of Delta State, there is a forest area called Ugbokko Araba? Yes. Now compare the names Ugbokko Araba in Anioma part of Delta State and Idi Araba in Lagos State in Yoruba Land and the truth will spark somewhere in your mind that Igbos were the aborigines in the Ile Ife area.

Otherwise, why the 2 similar names, if not that some ancient people who stepped on Idi Araba also stepped on Ugbokko Araba? And don’t mention coincidence, because if you take all the factoids we have placed up here -that are easily verifyable- you just cannot tell us that they are a result of a confluence of coincidences.

By OzoIgboNdu1 of Igbo Defender

Digital marketer and Marketing analyst


  1. Am from onicha igbo eze. I want to know d similarities btw all onichas accros d niger in igboland. Am an english student Al Qalam university, katsina

  2. If the aborigines of Yoruba lands were Igbos from Eri Kingdom, it can then be concluded that the whole of the west and all Yoruba lands are Igbo lands, which Oduduwa, the father of the Yorubas took by force!

    Oduduwa by the way is an Igbo name and could have been an Igbo warrior!

    And since his family intermarried with the Obatalas, it can equally be concluded that the Yorubas are Igbos and Yoruba language are corrupted Ibo!

    They can deny everything but historical facts are facts!

    Even Hausa people are Igbos!
    Look at Hausa names! Even the name Hausa is Igbo!!

    Fulanis are igbos who have mixed with Arabs and the Spanish people!

    Above all, Caucasian people are Igbos who were born as albinos and moved out of Africa!!!

    So in the end, this world is an Igbo world! Igbo is supreme!

    Now boys and girls you may begin to argue among yourselves!

    WORLDIGBO Igbology Igbonism Empowerment!

  3. Igbo was the original language and so everybody once spoke it. Yorubas and the Other groups you mentioned are not igbos but they all once spoke Igbo.

  4. @ WORLDIGBO Igbology And Igbonism Empowerment

    Igbos need to research their ancient history, which is filled with mysteries.
    But without research, we cannot accurately claim that any tribe was originally Igbo.
    Igbos and Igbodefenders should intensify historical research and cultural outreach with other cultures.
    For instance, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Enitan Ogunwusi, has invited Igbos to Aje Festival. We need to make sure that if the atmosphere is conduaive Igbos attend with an official delegation.
    Igbos can also attend as private tourists.
    Also, the Ooni has called on Igbo historians to intensify research on Igbo links to Ile Ife through Obatala. Igbos need to support institutions that research these issues like the University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN), the Obi of Onitsha, Ooni Ogunwusi, Igbodefender.com and others in their quest to unravel the ancient mysteries of Igbo.

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