by our correspondent
The Calabar Union in the United Kingdom, UK held their Annual Cultural Night last Saturday, September 13, 2014.
The occasion was intended to draw Efik indigenes across the UK to a cultural reunion and reawakening.
The occasion was also used to raise an undisclosed amount of money in aid of a Leper Colony in Akpabuyo LGA back home in Cross River State.
Dr. Lawrence Bassey Umo-Eto-Nkpe. A Cross River born medical doctor who spoke to CrossRiverWatch about the event said it was a time to unwind and enjoy typical Calabar hospitality,
He noted that Calabar people are not in the United Kingdom by accident. “We are here as a matter of right, as citizens of the world.” He said.
“Even though we keep calling where we are Host Country, Calabar people arrived Great Britain in the early eighteen century. Earlier than any other people of color. Earlier than the Indians, the Jews, and any other black tribes in the world. Calabar people are the first non-white tribe to communicate both in spoken and written English language. Efik Language is the first written African tribal language.”
He encouraged the people to be optimistic about the future of the Calabar nation by investing in the children and giving them proper direction and cultural orientation.
“The future will be in investing all our efforts in the new generation of Calabar people; that is, our children. To make them see themselves as Calabar people as well as British, (which is not very difficult, judging by our common cultural backgrounds and standards). To make them work hard to support the aspiration of both peoples, and integrate in both places as much as is possible.
“This can be achieved by the Union investing more time and resources to bring the young ones together at very regular intervals, to learn about each other and about Calabar culture. The parents could reinforce this by ensuring that the children before the age of sixteen visit Calabar and possibly attend the children Carnival in Calabar yearly, participating if possible.
“This would create a childhood memory and sense of identity that might endure for a life time.”
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