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Meaning of Akpa in Igala

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Akpa is an Igala word, and also a name for male Igala people. The location of the descedants of Akpa is mostly called Abo-Akpa which is always shortened to Abakpa just like Ibo-Ida which became Bida. Till date, hundreds of Igala bear the name Akpa. One of sons of Attah Ayegba Oma Idoko (one of the previous Attah Igala) was called Akpa.

He had Alago mother, and his descedants are in Doma LGA of Nasarawa State till date. Some Akpa descedants from Idah are the founders of Abakpa Nike in Enugu state. The traditional ruler of Abakpa Nike just like many rulers around Nsukka area always visit Attah Igala during Igala meetings or feast in the palace in Idah.

An Igala man also founded Abakpa in Kaduna south while that in Benue was founded by Idoma of Igala ancestry. Akpa people are also found in Cross River State, Bayelsa and Rivers State but all share some similar vocabularies and names including a festival called Etangala festival (which is a variant of Attagala festival) with Igala people of Kogi state and other states in Nigeria.

But what exactly is Akpa. Akpa is a special stool used by kings, priests, gods, Egwus. Akpa Ayegba is a special throne of Attah Igala. Attah Igala Royal Masquerades and some other aged spirits or Egwus have Akpa used by their priests to talk or make incarnation to them while sitting on.

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Can you see a boy carrying Akpa on the head in the picture? But Akpa is not an ordinary stool, it has a hollow made in it for keeping some traditional materials. It can’t be touched by the person not qualified as many have suffered various consenquences on trying to sit on, touch it or take something from it.

As a result of this safety of things kept in it, it was named Akpa from Akpati which means box. In other words, Akpa is from the Igala word, Akpati. This Akpa is a respected, special and sacred form of Akpati. It denotes honour, safety and royalty. Although Igala bear both Akpa and Akpati, Akpa is more common than Akpati due to its royal attachment.

Are you of Akpa person in Nigeria? Akpa is a variant of Akpati but the first is more of spiritual, royal and sacred than the latter but both have Igala origins. But do you have another origin of the word as an Akpa person?

Please tell us the origin and the meaning of Akpa is your area. Thank you.

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