A Career Beyond the Onitsha Kingdom

Onitsha Town situated in the east of the River Niger (original nomenclature: Onicha Ado n’Idu) is an ancient Kingdom of a most unique Nigerian people evolving since the 14th century with very rich culture and customs strengthened by the clear hierarchy and demarcation of responsibilities among traditional administrative cadres. At the apex of these cadres is an Obi whose majesty is levered by the able support and collaboration of distinct institutions led by chieftains called Ndi-Ichie.

Consequently, the various levels of administrations help to provide guidance to the Obi-in-Council in offering wise counsel while providing exemplary participatory democracy cutting across institutions of socio-cultural settings and other stakeholders like the Agbalanze-Onitsha (for the male gender), the Otu-Odu (for the female gender), and the Age-grade societies.

The compendium of rich Onitsha cultural heritage and unique institution of kingship is jealously held in MINDFUL perspective by the people who invariably arouse today the envy of many because, extraneous factors and pressures of present day modernity have not been able to diminish the importance and respect attached to the unique Onitsha Monarchical Stool.

From the foregoing therefore, it is no wonder that the Onitsha indigene is always distinguished and proud in their respective areas of endeavor no matter the place. That is synonymous with the lifestyle of one conscious of his heritage and core values. Such a person endeavors always to stand-out in the crowd.

Having said this much, it is pertinent at this juncture, to relate the prodigious Onitsha issues with the present concerns especially the topic of this paper: ‘A Career beyond the Onitsha Kingdom’.



The choice of this topic was made out of especial passion to positively impart my humble quota to the body of existing knowledge in child and youth development with emphasis on career. Furthermore, owing to the title given to this maiden magazine of the Onitsha-Ado Students Association of the University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, I couldn’t help but make effort to present a paper in line with their VISION which in the present circumstance is, in my candid opinion, plausible.

Presently, two questions may come to mind. First is: what is a career? The second is: what is a career beyond the Onitsha Kingdom?

Very well then if you are as curious as I was when trying to put this paper together. Now let us try to make some clarifications.

2.1 A CAREER – there are different definitions of the term career ranging from that in the Chambers dictionary that expresses career as one’s professional life, progress in one’s job or progress through life generally. However, for the purpose of this paper, I would rather look at career from the UNESCO perspective thus:

“the interaction of work roles and other life roles over a person’s lifespan

including both paid and unpaid work in an individual’s life”.

The above definition by UNESCO suggests that People are apt to create career patterns as they make decisions about education, work, family and other life roles. Recall that it has been established that the Onitsha people have over the years jealously held on to their rich cultural heritage and unique kingship institution with a MINDFUL perspective that generally influence the interaction of their work roles and other life roles to the extent that envy is aroused in many a non Onitsha indigene.

The use of the term ‘MINDFUL’ is deliberate and pedagogical with a view to having the word expatiated in its alphabetical and adverbial contexts as an enumeration of guard-points to inform the choice of a career that will potentially accord prestige, pride and altitude beyond one’s kingdom’s borders. For example, the need that informed the conceptualization of a life beyond the Onitsha Kingdom can only be satisfied when every Onitsha youth (Undergraduates/Postgraduates alike) is able to mindful (ly) engage in interaction of work roles and other life roles based on some carefully created career patterns resulting from valid decisions made about education, work, family and even recreational roles.

To be mindful(ly) engaged in the preponderant analogy is therefore to be able to perform on consistent basis a self-assessment of one’s position in relation to