The funeral rites of the late Oba of Benin, Omo N’ Oba N’ Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba Erediauwa, by the Crown Prince of Benin Kingdom and Edaiken N’ Uselu, Prince Eheneden Erediauwa, continued on Sunday with the performance of the Isoton rite.
Accompanied by 201 Chiefs from the Iwebo group, who walked in a single line and carried ‘Ekpoki’ on their shoulders, the Crown Prince in a colouful procession, trekked from his palace at Uselu in Egor Local Government area to the Palace in the city centre, Oredo Local Government Area, to perform the Isoton.
The performance of Isoton rite which is part of the 15 days funeral rites, enables the Edaiken to formally take over the position of his transited father.
The ceremony is important to Edo people because it indicates that a child has played his proper role in the funeral rites of his late father and makes the soul of the departed move to the land of the dead.
During the procession, four Palace Chiefs carried an elephant effigy while Prince Eheneden dressed in red was held by two Chiefs as he danced through the streets.
At the Palace of the Queen mother at the popular five junction, the Edaiken made a brief stop over and paid homage by spraying grounded white chalk on the gate of the palace.
He also stopped at Emotan Shrine where he paid homage before he moved to the Palace.
Women who covered their hair were asked to remove their hair-ties while nobody was allowed to stay on any storey building on the route to the Palace to see the Crown Prince.
Heavy vehicular traffic was recorded during the procession, as motorists came down to watch the Benins perform their ancient tradition.