Ibu Afo Festival

Ibu Afo Festival

On or near March 20
The Igbo people of Nigeria celebrate their New Year's Eve around March 20 with a solemn ceremony marking the end of the old year and heralding the arrival of the new. The council of elders who fix the annual calendar determine the exact hour at which the year will end. When it arrives, a wailing noise signals the departing year, and children rush into their houses, lock the doors to avoid being carried away by the old year as it leaves, and bang on the doors to add to the din. As soon as the wailing dies down, the doors are thrown open and everyone greets the new year with spontaneous applause.
CONTACTS:
Embassy of the Federal Republic of Nigeria
3519 International Ct. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20008
202-986-8400; fax: 202-775-1385
www.nigeriaembassyusa.org
SOURCES:
BkHolWrld-1986, Mar 18
FolkWrldHol-1999, p. 213
(c)