imagesize = 300px
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pushpin_map_caption =Location in Nigeria
subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_type1 = State
subdivision_type2 = It is composed of 19 villages.
government_footnotes = One of the few kingdoms in Nigeria, practices the monachical system of government.
leader_title = The leader is called Eze Aro.
Ibibio, and Akpa
Christianity, Traditional religions
latd=5 |latm=23 |lats= |latNS=N
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Arochukwu (sometimes referred to as Arochuku, Aro-Okigbo)) pronounced aruchukwu is the third largest town in
Abia State(after Aba and Umuahia) in southeastern Nigeria. Arochukwu is one of the few kingdoms in Africa, it practices the monarchical system of government.It is composed of 19 villages with an overall leader called Eze Aro. As of 2005, the population of the area was 97800 and it contains convert|130169|acre|km2 of land. Arochukwu is a principal historic town in Igboland. It was also one of the last towns in the Southern protectorate conquered by the British colonial government. Several historic tourist sites exist in the city. The educationalist Mazi Alvan Ikoku (1900-1971), the football star, Kanu Nwankwo are sons of the kingdom. The mystic Long-Juju shrine, the slave routes and other relics of the slave trade era are frequently visited by tourists. It is also in the food belt of Abia state where most of the staple foods are produced.
Arochukwu is believed to have been the homeland of the
Ibibioas they arrived in 300 AD from the Benue valley and founded early states like Obong okon Ita and Ibom. Many years passed as Igboimmigrants came along and pressed into the Ibibio occupied territory and founded several states. The first Igbo group were the Ezeagwu group. As Aro-Ibibio warsoccurred, Igbo leaders were unable to turn the conflicts in the favor of the Igbo. In reaction, one Igbo Priest named Nnachifrom Edda clan, invited some allies from the east of the cross river through his son Oke Nnachi. These people were identified as the Akpapeople as there firearms attracted their Igbo allies. Akpa forces led by Osim and Akuma Nnubi, they helped the Igbo forces capture the area and settled in the Aro region. This formed the alliance of 19 new and old states in the area known as the Arochukwu kingdom in a time around 1690-1720. The first king (or EzeAro) was Akuma but after his death, Oke Nnachi tookover and his descendants has the throne to this very day. Slave trade hit the hinterland around the same time.
Slave trade formed the
Aro Confederacywhich was an alliance of the Aros and their related Cross river neighbours (mainly Igbo) which was led by the powerful Eze Aro (king of the Aros), other chiefs, and agents of Ibini Ukpabi. After the confederacy evolved, more Aro businessmen left their homeland to settle in hundreds of settlements mostly in Nigeriaand claimed Cameroon, and Equatorial Guinea. The confederacy was very influential as it monopolized trade in Eastern Nigeria, Deltaareas, southern Igala areas and perhaps even beyond the borders of Nigeria by oracular and economical forces. Some slaves were captured by fierce Aro slave raiders and warriors were feared and backed up by allies such as Ohafia, Abam, Bende, Abiriba, Afikpoand other warriorlands that supplied recruiters and mercenaries.
Tensions rose between the Aro confederacy and Europeans in the late 19th century leading to the power to decline and eventually the
Anglo-Aro warin 1901-1902. Constant British invasions by men with advanced and superior weapons defeated Aro forces who fought gallantly. The legendary Ibini Ukpabi (known as the Long Juju) shrine was destroyed as the Aro dominance and power was overpowered by the British foreces with their superior firepower.
The language in Arochukwu is Igbo and Ibibio.
Arochukwu is one of the only towns in Igboland named after God. Though named after God, it was named this before Christianity ever came, implying a belief in one "Supreme Being". 'Aro' translates as 'Spear' and 'Chukwu' as God.Put together this could imply Spear of God.
* [http://www.aronetwork.org/geography.htm Arochukwu Network geography page] (http://eabuja.com/index.html)
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