Evidence Of Igala Migration From Ancient Egypt ( Egyptian Origin of Igala People )


By Amb Ayegba Abdullahi Aduojoh (General Igala Ambassador of Igala Kingdom)

At a certain point, many people had to migrate from Egypt due to several invasions by external people including the Arabs, Hyksos, Persian, etc. Igala was part of the people that migrated from Egypt then. The following are some evidences to proof the Egyptian origin of Igala or Igala migration from the ancient Egypt.

1. Numerous similar words between Igala and ancient Egyptian word and their similar or related meanings and a few are given below:

 1. Spirit or breath in English is Em/Mi in Ancient Egyptian and Imi in Igala 2. To go away in English is Feh in Ancient Egyptian and Fe (like in lo kefe) in Igala 3. Black/Dark in English is Dud in Ancient Egyptian and Edudu in Igala 4. Settlement in English is Dor in Ancient Egyptian andDo/Odo in Igala 5. To knowin English is Ma in Ancient Egyptian and Ma/Uma in Igala 6. To create/make in English is Se in Ancient Egyptian and Che in Igala 7. Deep water in English is Omijere in Ancient Egyptian and Omijiji in Igala 8. Talk in English is Ro in Ancient Egyptian and Ro (as romiolo)inIgala 9. Children in English is Amu in Ancient Egyptian and Oma in Igala 10. Grond/land in English is Ani/Ren in Ancient Egyptian and Ane in Igala 11. Open in English is Fa in Ancient Egyptian and Fa (as in pull) in Igala 12. Leader in English is Isi in Ancient Egyptian and Uchi/Eneuchi in Igala 13. Dawn/Night in English is Utcha in Ancient Egyptian and Ich/Idu in Igala 14. Yes in English is Ehn in Ancient Egyptian and ehi in Igala 15. Rise in English is Wu in Ancient Egyptian and Wu (ajiwu or Garriwu) in Igala 16. Hill in English is Oke in Ancient Egyptian and Oke in Igala 17. Rejoice in English is Hoo/Yooin Ancient Egyptian and Yo in Igala 18.Head of a city in English is On in Ancient Egyptian and Onu in Igala 19. Confess in English is Beka in Ancient Egyptian and Ka/Ka aluwe in Igala 20. Boat in English is Oko in Ancient Egyptian and Oko in Igala 21. Not Known in English is Amon in Ancient Egyptian and Aman in Igala 22. Finish in English is Tan in Ancient Egyptian and Ita/Itakpa in Igala 23. Sarpent in English is Edjo in Ancient Egyptian and Ejo in Igala 24. Fire in English is Unas in Ancient Egyptian and Una in Igala 25. Evil in English is Ubi in Ancient Egyptian and Ubi/Ejunubi in Igala 26. Pluck in English is Ka in Ancient Egyptian and Ka in Igala 27. Fear in English is Eru in Ancient Egyptian and Ailu in Igala 28. Worship in English is Se in Ancient Egyptian and Che (like in Cheebo) in Igala  29. Walk in English is Ren in Ancient Egyptian and Le in Igala 30. Divide in English is Penka in Ancient Egyptian and Kpe in Igala 31. Invocation in English is Ash in ancient Egyptian and Ache in Igala 32. Python in English is Ere in ancient Egyptian and Ere in Igala 33. Male in English is Ak in Ancient Egyptian and Ekele/Oko in Igala 34. Chant in English is Ged in Ancient Egyptian and Igede/Ogba in Igala 35. Die is English means Khu in ancient Egyptian and Ku in Igala 36 Water in English means Omi in ancient Egyptian and Omi in Igala 37. Mouth in English means Aru in ancient Egyptian and Alu in Igala 38. Moon in English means Khonsu in ancient Egyptian and Ochu in Igala 39. Person in English means On in ancient Egyptian and One in Igala 40. Sell in English means Ta in ancient Egyptian and Ta in Igala 41. Buy in English means Ra in ancient Egyptian and La in Igala, etc

2. Did you know the origin of lion (Idu) as part of Attah Igala’s greetings (Agaba Idu)?

Well, it began in Egypt where Igala migrated from. In ancient Egypt, lion symbolises Power and Kingship. It also means Majesty, Courage, military might. Some seats of Attah Igala have the head of a lion carved on them. Other Igala traditional rulers have this similar seats with lion head carved on them too.

3. When a Pharaoh passed on and a new one is to be taken, the pharaoh to-be will be the eldest son of the late Pharaoh except there were certain issues. This is the same with the selection of new Attah Igala.

4. When the Pharaoh to-be is selected by the king makers, he passed through various traditional stages including rituals and sacrifices, and this activities can last close to a year before his coronation as the Pharaoh. This is the same in the case of any new Attah Igala. After the Attah to be is selected by the king makers (Igalamela), he would pass through various stages ranging from trekking from Ugwolawo in Ofu LGA to Idah, visit to Ajaina (the resting ground of any Attah that transited to the other world), visit to his traditional father, visit to his traditional mother, ritual of becoming a “woman”, …. until his final coronation as Attah Igala.

5. Although, Pharaoh was meant to be a male throne being of a king and not a queen, some Pharaohs were females, example is Pharaoh Cleopatra. So, also in ancient Igala, Igala had a female Attah called Attah Ebulejonu (Amichi), the daughter of Abutu Ejeh.  She was the first Attah after Igala people’s migration from Wukari in the present Taraba state (where they settled temporarily after their migration from Egypt) to Idah. This confirms the continuation of the “Pharaohic” style of rulership in Nigeria (Igala people).

6. When a Pharaoh dies, he will not be buried immediately but his or her body will undergo traditional preservation and some processes until after some months before the burial. This is same in the case of any Attah Igala who joined the ancestors.

7. When a late Pharaoh is to be buried, he or she will be buried along with some servants and belongings. This is same with the ancient Attah Igala.

8. Both the ancient Egyptian and Igala believe that there is life after death, and the dead just transited to the other world. That was why in the burial of ancient Egyptian Pharaohs as well as Attah Igala, servants were buried with them so that the servants would continue to serve the kings in the other world. The case of Prince Inikpi, the daughter of Attah Ayegba Oma Idoko (during Igala-Benin war 1515-1516) was similar as some maids accompanied her to the other world during her voluntary burial.

From United Igala Kingdom facebook page:


Just like in Igala, in ancient Egyptian world, it was believed that anyone who leaves this world will be in another world and life continues. That was why when any ancient Pharaoh died, he will be buried with some servants, some belongings and even pets. This was to allow him or her have some people to serve him or her as a king even in that area. The case of Igala is not different as exact or related culture was done in ancient Igala. And till date, many Igala especially the elders like traditional leaders still see the issue of hell or heaven as “audio” (not real), and that their ancestors are resting in the other world. That is why they call their ancestors during some activities/gathering and give them cola nuts. Some also make sacrifices to them and confirm if it has been accepted or rejected by their ancestors, studies revealed. You no fit call pesin from hell or heaven to come chop cola nut na. Well, that was part of the traditions Igala brought from Egypt and from the palace of Pharaoh in particular during our migration from there. But similar culture showed that Igala was one of the ancient Pharaoh or part of a Pharaoh dynasty or lineage for the similar burial processes to be continued even in this location (Nigeria)   after many centuries of separation.

9. The ancient Egyptians believe that Pharaoh was  God or mediator between them and God. This was the same in the case of Igala as some Attah Igala have the power like “God”, as confirmed by some of them personally.

“… God made me after his image, and I am all the same as God. He appointed me a king”, Attah Ameh Ocheje during the visit of Queen of England’s delegation to him in Idah in 1840, in the book of G. M. Clifford.

“… what happens is that if the Attah wishes anybody well, the person shall prosper. But when he wishes a man evil, it will go with him ”, Attah Idakwo Ameh Oboni II, during an interview with the punch newspaper in 2017 when he was asked “ Why Attah must not place curse on anybody”.

10. While in ancient Egyptian, Pharaoh means the great house, Aat means the great one, and Aita/Atta means father, in Igala, Attah means father, elder, the greatest of all or the great one.

11. In ancient Egyptians, there were various priests in charge of various gods in different temples. These priests give the gods water, food, kola nuts and even sing for them daily. This was to ensure peace, protection and blessings on the people of Egypt. In ancient Igala and still in some communities, it is the same. Some elders serve the gods with water, kola nut and even food every morning or occasionally. Some even sing for them after the incantations or prayers. This can be for the community god or family or personal god.

12. In the entire Kogi Igala land, no other traditional ruler is buried the same way as Attah Igala.  This is same in ancient Egypt, this confirms that Igala was one of the Pharaohs or Igala belonged to the Pharaoh royal clan that the Attah is buried the same way as Pharaoh.

13. In ancient Egyptian world, any man who married a Princess would become a King. This was the case of Attah Ebulejonu (Amichi) Abutu Ejeh and Omepa Ajogu, the husband of Igala female Attah, Attah Ebulejonu who became the Achadu (Achadu Oko Attah) the Prime minister of Igala Kingdom. Another tradition carried along from Egypt

Conclusion: The migration of Igala people from Egypt to the present day Nigeria took place very many centuries ago, but till date, the cultures, traditions and many words or part of the languages for the two  (Igala and ancient Egytian) remain the same or very similar. The similarity between the selection of new Attah and new Pharaoh as well as well the burial process of late Attah and late Pharaoh has crowned the entire evidences to confirm that Igala originated from ancient Egypt.

© Ayegab A. A.

United Igala Kingdom.


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